Sample Observation Essay In Apa Format

How to write an Observation essay?

This type of essay permits the reader “view” the described experience with his own eyes. Here, the essay author becomes a film, which only grabbed the scenery for the reader, and he is the only one to analyze it. The author in this type of essay is nothing but a technical device to deliver the observations. The provided information is ordinarily focused on the main five senses of human beings. A good observation essay makes an imprint in the memory of the reader and becomes his own experience destroying the borderline between real and read experiences.

Observation essay Outline

This rubric is a condensed treatment of the Observation essay writing, this Outline is just a description of the main facts and rules about how to write this type of essay. One should practice as much as possible to become good in writing an Observation essay.

Writing an Observation essay

 It is obvious that good observational skills are crucial for a professional observation essay. In order to achieve a good observational result the author while the process of observation needs to catch every little detail. Knowing all the possible details will convert the essay into a real creative masterpiece and make the reader notice details he have never thought of before. Every sound, smell, touch, glance and taste should be mentioned.

Observation essay structure

An observation essay does not have a certain structure because cannot be written according to a standard essay scheme. This is due to the fact that it more about senses than about arguments. Only certain recommendations can be given:

    • In order to create the atmosphere of the reader’s presence the paper must be written in the present tense.
    • The author is to mention as much details, as it is possible. It is for the details the imagination of the reader start to fully work making the essay a part of the reader’s memory.
    • The main focus as it has been mentioned before should be made on the five basic senses: smell, touch, taste, hearing and sight. This is what makes the essay real in the mind of the reader.
    • The ability of the author to make good parallels and comparisons of the observed phenomenon is crucial for an observation essay.

Observation essay format

This type of essay like all others could be formated in MLA, Chicago/Turabian, APA, AMA. That depends on your essay topic, subject area and the assignment requeirements. Please be consistent following the one style of format of all the essay elements: Title, headings, paragraphs Text pages, Fonts, Indents, Justifications, Spacing, Page numbers, Emphasis, Footnotes, reference list etc.

Observation Essay Examples

A vast collection of Observation essay samples is presented in our database.  Each Observation essay example provided by our custom essay writing service is absolutely free.

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Observation Essay Topics

Observation essays can be written on many different topics which base on the information ordinarily focused on the main five senses of human beings. Delicate approach to the choice of a topic or keen understanding of the one topic is the key element of good essay writing.   
If you hesitate either on choosing the essay topic or the idea for Observation essay please feel free to contact us and we gladly help you any time you need assistance.

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PSYCH 018 Index > Observation Research Paper

Observation Research Project

Read everything before doing anything!

This is one of the two research papers you will be writing in this course. You may work in groups of two, but each of you must write your own paper. The paper must contain all the parts of a research paper:

Title Page
This must be in APA style. Don’t use the words “A Study of” or “An Observation of” in the title.
A very brief summary of the contents of your article. This should be no more than 150 words (the APA style guide recommends 120).
The introduction gives the background of the problem you are investigating. This is where you summarize previous research in the area. You must have at least three references in your paper. Don’t go into excessive detail about the references; as the APA guide says, “Assume that the reader is knowledgeable about the basic problem and does not require a complete accounting of its history.” (American Psychological Association, 2010, p. 28)

After the historical review, explain the purpose of your observation, and give your main hypothesis and any alternate hypotheses.

This can be broken into subsections that talk about the participants, apparatus (if you need any), and procedure. Write this section in the past tense. This doesn’t mean you have to wait until the observation is finished to start writing; you can plan out your method (in fact, you’d better do that before you start observing!) and write it down as if it had already occurred. After all, when you finish the observation, it will have.
Evaluate your results in words (e.g., “The general trend shows that depressed people show more symptoms during the evening than during the day, but the results were not significant.”) Do significance testing on your results and report them in APA style. For a χ2 statistic, either describe the frequencies in words or in a table, but not both. For Wilcoxon, Mann-Whitney, and t tests, you do not need a table.
Evaluate your results in light of your hypothesis or hypotheses. Begin with a clear statement of the support or rejection of your original hypothesis. You may wish to compare your results to previous results in the field.
These must be in APA style. You may not, under any circumstances, use any paper by Milgram, Skinner, Zimbardo, Asch, Festinger, or Bandura as a reference, nor may they be the topic of your reference. Yes, they did groundbreaking work, but much has been done since. You must have at least three references from peer-reviewed journals or books.


Before you start your observations, you will write part of the introduction (your area of research and your hypotheses), the method section of your paper, and the references. Obviously, you can’t include information about the number of participants, nor the results that you obtained, as you haven’t done the observing yet. This pre-review material will be due on the date shown on the main index page.. During lab that day, another student will assess your paper using this scale
Peer Review
observation and paper must be complete by the date showno n the index page. Another student will assess your paper using this scale, and return the assessment to me on that same day. (This will take longer; there’s more to read than in the pre-review.)
Presentations / Final Version
Presentations will start on 6 November 2014. Presentations must a minimum of three minutes and a maximum of five minutes. Each presentation will be followed by a maximum of five minutes of discussion. We will use lab time during those class sessions. I will use this scale to assess your presentations.
Final Version of Paper
The final version of the paper is due on 6 November 2014. Upload the word processing document and Excel spreadsheet with your raw data to Moodle. The word processing documents must have a name of the form (or , or if you’re using LibreOffice) and the spreadsheet must have a name of the form , or , where is your four-digit identifier. If you are using LibreOffice, the file name will end with .

I will use the same scale as the peer review to grade your papers, with the following additonal penalties:

Citation of direct quote without page number 2%
Incorrect citation format


Incorrect heading


Incorrect reference format (penalty depends on
how severe the error is)

Up to 8%

Use of MLA format in reference


Incorrect page break


These penalties are for each occurrence, so if you have three incorrect citations, you lose 15%. If you have two incorrect page breaks, you lose 4%.


American Psychological Association (2010). Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) Washington, DC: Author.

Sample Papers

Here are some sample papers from previous semesters. All of them except one are fairly good.

Note: Some of these were written using the older APA manual, and not all of them follow the APA manual precisely. Do not blindly follow these examples. Instead, if you are in doubt as to the proper way to place a heading or indent a reference, look in the APA manual!


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