Understanding Walden's New Policy for Formatting the Running Head -->

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Understanding Walden's New Policy for Formatting the Running Head

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As you may have seen in last week’s announcement from the Chief Academic Officer, Walden University recently changed its official policy on running head requirements. Here’s the rundown of what’s going on with this APA formatting requirement, how it will impact you, and the reasoning behind this change.

What’s Happening?
You know that fun (and sometimes irksome) running head? It’s an abbreviated version of the title of your paper that appears along the top header of all pages of your work. Walden has decided to officially no longer require this detail for Walden coursework. You will still need something in the header section of your document, but now it’s only a page number in the upper right corner of your paper. Our templates have been fully updated to reflect this change, so you can see a visual of what the new format looks like.

How does it impact me?
Essentially, you do not have to include a running head on any of your papers for your Walden writing. You will not be penalized for including a running head if you so choose, but use of a running head is now optional. However, page numbers are still a requirement. If you need help with adding page numbers, you can find out more here on the Academic Skills Center pages for MS Word help, or use our templates.

Why the change?
Based on data from Walden’s support services, students, and faculty, it became clear that students were spending a great deal of time and effort formatting running heads. The running head functions to help differentiate stacks of physical papers that could get lost or mixed up on a physical desk, so for Walden’s purposes, the running head is much less important than other formatting details. Because Walden is an online university, once an instructor has a file, the title of the document is always at the top of the screen while reading, eliminating the necessity of a running head.

Also, Walden has never required a running head for doctoral capstones or KAMs, so doing away with this element helps with continuity throughout programs.

Still have questions? Need help? The Writing Center is here for you! Visit our Quick Answers, chat, or review services, or email us at writingsupport@waldenu.edu for additional assistance.

The Walden University Writing Center
constantly reviews and revises its practices and materials to best meet the myriad needs of its writers. The WUWC promotes writing as a rhetorical act, which embraces a changing negotiation between writer, audience, and technology. Walden writers can expect evolving writing instruction that helps them become effective scholarly writers in the 21st century. 

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