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Other APA Guidelines: Seriation


If you have a series of elements in the body of a paragraph, separate each element with lowercase letters enclosed in parentheses. Although only necessary for more complex elements, here is a simple example: (a) lions, (b) tigers, and (c) bears.

Only use numbers to separate elements in a series if in a vertical list.

  1. One element.
  2. Two element.
  3. Three element.

This would be appropriate when you need to show a specific order of elements, such as in steps in a procedure or conclusions.

Sixth edition APA now allows for bulleted lists. Bulleted lists are appropriate when presenting a list of items in no particular order.

  • I like apples.
  • I like bananas.
  • I like oranges.

The bullets indicate that I like apples, bananas, and oranges equally.

Knowledge Check: Seriation