Tables, Appendices, Footnotes and Endnotes
Written for undergraduate students and new graduate students in psychology (experimental), this handout provides information on writing in psychology and on experimental report and experimental article writing.
Contributors:Dana Lynn Driscoll, Aleksandra Kasztalska
Last Edited: 2013-03-12 08:39:20
Appendices: When appendices might be necessary
Appendices allow you to include detailed information in your paper that would be distracting in the main body of the paper. Examples of items you might have in an appendix include mathematical proofs, lists of words, the questionnaire used in the research, a detailed description of an apparatus used in the research, etc.
Format of appendices
Your paper may have more than one appendix. Usually, each distinct item has its own appendix. If your paper only has one appendix, label it "Appendix" (without quotes.) If there is more than one appendix, label them "Appendix A," "Appendix B," etc. (without quotes) in the order that each item appears in the paper. In the main text, you should refer to the Appendices by their labels.
The actual format of the appendix will vary depending on the content; therefore, there is no single format. In general, the content of an appendix should conform to the appropriate APA style rules for formatting text.
Footnotes and Endnotes: When footnotes/endnotes might be necessary
Because APA style uses parenthetical citations, you do not need to use footnotes or endnotes to cite your sources. The only reasons you need to use footnotes are for explanatory (content) notes or copyright permission. Content footnotes contain information that supplements the text, but would be distracting or inappropriate to include in the body of the paper. In other words, content footnotes provide important information that is a tangent to what you are discussing in your paper.
The footnote should only express one idea. If it is longer than a few sentences, then you should consider putting this information in an appendix. Most authors do not use footnotes because they tend to be distracting to the readers. If the information is important, authors find a way to incorporate it into the text itself or put it in an appendix.
If you are including a quote that is longer than 500 words or a table or figure in your paper that was originally published elsewhere, then you need to include a footnote that acknowledges that you have permission from the owner of the copyright to use the material.
See our APA guidelines on Footnotes and Endnotes for more information.
When to use tables
Tables enable you to show your data in an easy to read format. However, you do not need to present all of your data in tabular form. Tables are only necessary for large amounts of data that would be too complicated in the text. If you only need to present a few numbers, you should do so directly in the text, not in a table.
How to use tables
Each table should be identified by a number, in the order that they appear in the text (e.g., Table 1, Table 2, etc.). When using a table, you need to refer to the table in the text (e.g., "As shown in Table 1,…") and point out to the reader what they should be looking for in the table. Do not discuss every piece of data that is in the table or else there is no point in having the table. Only mention the most important pieces of information from the table.
The table should also make sense on its own. Be sure to explain all abbreviations except standard abbreviations such as M, SD, and df. Don’t forget to identify the unit of measurement.
APA style has a specific format for tables. Tables should appear at the end of your paper, after the reference list and before any appendixes. Every table needs a unique title after its label. The title should be brief but clearly explain what is in the table.
I. General Points to Consider
When considering whether to include content in an appendix, keep in mind the following points:
- It is usually good practice to include your raw data in an appendix, laying it out in a clear format so the reader can re-check your results. Another option if you have a large amount of raw data is to consider placing it online and note that this is the appendix to your research paper.
- Any tables and figures included in the appendix should be numbered as a separate sequence from the main paper. Remember that appendices contain non-essential information that, if removed, would not diminish a reader's ability to understand the research problem being investigated. This is why non-textual elements should not carry over the sequential numbering of non-textual elements in the body of your paper.
- If you have more than three appendices, consider listing them on a separate page at the beginning of your paper. This will help the reader know before reading the paper what information is included in the appendices [always list the appendix or appendices in a table of contents].
- The appendix can be a good place to put maps, photographs, diagrams, and other images, if you feel that it will help the reader to understand the content of your paper, while keeping in mind the point that the study should be understood without them.
- An appendix should be streamlined and not loaded with a lot information. If you have a very long and complex appendix, it is a good idea to break it down into separate appendices, allowing the reader to find relevant information quickly as the information is covered in the body of the paper.
Never include an appendix that isn’t referred to in the text. All appendices should be summarized in your paper where it is relevant to the content. Appendices should also be arranged sequentially by the order they were first referenced in the text [i.e., Appendix 1 should not refer to text on page eight of your paper and Appendix 2 relate to text on page six].
There are few rules regarding what type of material can be included in an appendix, but here are some common examples:
- Correspondence -- if your research included collaborations with others or outreach to others, then correspondence in the form of letters, memorandums, or copies of emails from those you interacted with could be included.
- Interview Transcripts -- in qualitative research, interviewing respondents is often used to gather information. The full transcript from an interview is important so the reader can read the entire dialog between researcher and respondent.
- Non-textual elements -- as noted above, if there are a lot of non-textual items, such as, figures, tables, maps, charts, photographs, drawings, or graphs, think about highlighting examples in the text of the paper but include the remainder in an appendix.
- Questionnaires or surveys -- this is a common form of data gathering. Always include the survey instrument or questionnaires in an appendix so the reader understands not only the questions asked but the sequence in which they were asked. Include all variations of the instruments as well if different items were sent to different groups.
- Raw statistical data – this can include any numerical data that is too lengthy to include in charts or tables in its entirety within the text.
- Research instruments -- if you used a camera, or a recorder, or some other device to gather information and it is important for the reader to understand how that device was used; this information can be placed in an appendix.
- Sample calculations – this can include quantitative research formulas or detailed descriptions of how calculations were used to determine relationships and significance.
NOTE: Appendices should not be a dumping ground for information. Do not include vague or irrelevant information in an appendix; this additional information will not help the reader’s overall understanding and interpretation of your research and may only distract the reader from understanding the significance of your overall study.
ANOTHER NOTE: Appendices are intended to provide supplementary information that you have gathered or created; it is not intended to replicate or provide a copy of the work of others. For example, if you need to contrast the techniques of analysis used by other authors with your own method of analysis, summarize that information, and cite to the original work. In this case, a citation to the original work is sufficient enough to lead the reader to where you got the information. You do not need to provide this in an appendix.
Here are some general guideline on how to format appendices, but consult the writing style guide [e.g., APA] your professor wants you to use for more detail, if needed:
- Appendices may precede or follow your list of references.
- Each appendix begins on a new page.
- The order they are presented is dictated by the order they are mentioned in the text of your research paper.
- The heading should be "Appendix," followed by a letter or number [e.g., "Appendix A" or "Appendix 1"], centered and written in bold type.
- Appendices must be listed in the table of contents [if used].
- The page number(s) of the appendix/appendices will continue on with the numbering from the last page of the text.
Appendices. The Structure, Format, Content, and Style of a Journal-Style Scientific Paper. Department of Biology. Bates College; Appendices. Academic Skills Office, University of New England; Appendices. Writing Center, Walden University; Chapter 12, "Use of Appendices." In Guide to Effective Grant Writing: How to Write a Successful NIH Grant. Otto O. Yang. (New York: Kluwer Academic, 2005), pp. 55-57;Tables, Appendices, Footnotes and Endnotes. The Writing Lab and The OWL. Purdue University; Lunsford, Andrea A. and Robert Connors. The St. Martin's Handbook. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1989; What To Know About The Purpose And Format Of A Research Paper Appendix. LoyolaCollegeCulion.com.