Answered By: Heidi Beke-Harrigan
Last Updated: Oct 14, 2016     Views: 312590

First, see if you can open a template in APA format, which will do this for you. If not, read on.

For Microsoft Word 2016 instructions, watch this excellent video on YouTube. 

Microsoft Word 2013, click here or read on:

  1. From the menu, click on the Insert tab.
  2. On the toolbar that appears, choose the Page Number option.
  3. Select the option you want (usually top of the page).
  4. Go to the menu, at the top of the page, under Header and Footer Tools, click the box that says Different first page.
  5. Your cursor should now be at the top of page 1 in the header box. Set the cursor just to the left of the number 1 and type Running head: and then your abbreviated title.
  6. Use the backspace key to set your title to the left and then use the tab key to move the page number back to the right hand side (usually 2 tabs).
  7. Close the header and footer (red x on the top right-hand side of the page)
  8. Go to page 2 of your document (or if you haven't started writing it, insert a page break) and delete the phrase Running head, leaving just your abbreviated title.
  9. On page 1, Running head will remain in your first page header, and only your abbreviated title will appear on subsequent pages.

It's easier to set up the pages before you start writing the paper.

Microsoft Word 2007 and Microsoft Word 2010:

  1. On the View tab, select the Print Layout document view.
  2. Double click the header area of the document.
  3. On the Header & Footer Tools Design tab, in the Options group, select the check box for Different First Page.



Comments (27)

  1. Thank you so much, it is ridiculous how difficult this was. I don't understand why Word made this so hard to add a header and page numbers on the same line. Thanks for the help!
    by Melissa on Nov 26, 2014.
  2. Thank you so much, this was a giant help!!
    by Caroline on Mar 08, 2016.
  3. thanks for the information I really needed it.
    by Jeffrey on Mar 28, 2016.
  4. Thanks for the step-by-step guide. It was extremely helpful!
    by Shannon on Apr 10, 2016.
  5. This helped me tremendously! It was very difficult for me to figure it out until i found this
    by Rachelle on Apr 24, 2016.
  6. Thank you so much. I have to come back to this for every paper because it is so ridiculously difficult and I can never remember these steps!
    by Meaghan on May 06, 2016.
  7. Thank you for your help. You are a life saver!
    by Roger Slawon on Aug 30, 2016.
  8. Thank you. I always forget a couple of the steps and then i'm stuck. Thanks for the step-by-step help.
    by Mr. Tim on Sep 04, 2016.
  9. This was excellent. I was able to set paper up quickly. Was struggling terribly prior.
    by Kat on Sep 11, 2016.
  10. Just switched from having to write MLA papers to APA and this is so much help. You win the internets.
    by Crystal on Oct 01, 2016.
  11. Lifesaver! Thank you so much!!!
    by Shana on Oct 03, 2016.
  12. I searched templates in word and chose apa. This automatically sets up the running head/page number/template for you.
    by stef on Oct 08, 2016.
  13. A million thanks. Why can't they make it simple?
    by Amy on Oct 12, 2016.
  14. Thank you so much! you don't understand how much this helped me.
    by Tiffiany on Apr 10, 2017.
  15. thanks. you are a life saver!
    by Linda on Apr 19, 2017.
  16. Thank Goodness for Google, and everyone else who commented and said they could not figure this out. Why was this so hard?
    by Bree Hart on Jul 14, 2017.
  17. Yes indeed, thank you! The directions in my APA The Easy Way don't work for this issue, and it took numerous Google searches before finding this.
    by Gretchen on Jul 24, 2017.
  18. I can't tell you how grateful I am for this solution. I even had to make one change to your directions work for me! You're wonderful!!!
    by Judith on Aug 03, 2017.
  19. Thank you so much. I had trouble with running heads and page numbers on all pages of the document, and your instructions applied to that too.
    by Elise on Aug 15, 2017.
  20. Thank you for this. I have always had issues with this seemingly simple task, and now I feel like I truly know how to do this forever due to your instructions :)
    by Sami on Aug 30, 2017.
  21. HUGE help! Thank you! It only took me over an hour to figure how to do it, but with this I got it in no time!
    by C Mayor on Sep 13, 2017.
  22. Thank you! This helped so much. I have been trying to do this for over an hour and a half!
    by Diane on Oct 09, 2017.
  23. Omg!!! Thank you so much! What a night mare this was trying to do the Header and page numbers !
    by Carla on Oct 14, 2017.
  24. I've looked all over the web trying to figure this out! Very helpful!
    by Brat on Oct 28, 2017.
  25. Thank you, it was very helpfull
    by Lidia on Oct 30, 2017.
  26. Thanks so much. I had points taken off my last paper for this. I couldn't seem to get the page numbers in the corner and the running head on the line at the same time. It seemed like it was so difficult, yet so easy. Thanks for all the help. I did have to redo the steps on page 2 cause it didn't automatically do the running head but the page number was there but it was good after I redid the steps for the header. You are AWESOME!!!!
    by Kim on Nov 10, 2017.
  27. Thanks a million! I have been struggling to format my paper. It was not displaying the header and page number at the same time in Word 2010. Your explanation saved me. My paper is due today!
    by Sandra B. on Mar 05, 2018.

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