APA: Tables, Figures, & Math

APA: Tables, Figures, & Math

The purpose of tables and figures in documents is to enhance the reader’s understanding of the information in the document. Be sure to reference and explain every figure and table used in your paper.

Tables and Figures

Tables consist of numerical information or text, usually arranged in rows and columns. Figures are visuals, like graphs, charts, maps, drawings, and photos.

Tables and figures follow the same structure:

  • Give each table/figure a number and a title.
    • Number your tables and figures separately. Your first figure should be called Figure 1. Your first table should be called Table 1.
    • Above the body of the figure or table, include the number and title of the table/figure. The figure/table number should be bolded, and the title should appear one double-spaced line below the number. The title of your figure/table should be italicized.
  • Include notes for each table and figure as needed.
    • Notes provide additional information about the table or figure. Below the figure or table, write the word Note followed by a period. If you are using information or reproducing something from an outside source, you’ll need to include attribution information in a note. Notice that this information does not follow the format for a reference.
    • Make sure that you have permission to reproduce any information or images.
    • For the copyright statement, do your best to find the latest copyright year. Oftentimes, but not always, the copyright year is the same as the year of publication. The copyright holder is usually the publisher.
  • In addition to attribution information in the note, be sure to include a reference for each table and figure on the references page for your paper.

See the examples below for guidance on how to format tables, figures, and math problems in your document.



Please note, these templates may not be translated appropriately in some products. Please be sure the paper you submit adheres to APA formatting standards.

Figure Example

Figure 1

Mathematical reproduction of a portion of Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam

Note. Created using a 12,000 node, non-optimal Traveling Salesperson Problem solution. Adapted from “TSP Art and Simple Closed Curves,” by R. Bosch, n.d., Domino Artwork: The Mathematical Art of Robert Bosch (http://www.dominoartwork.com/tspart.html). Copyright 2015 by Robert Bosch.


Table Example

Table 1

The Four Principles of Sustainability Performance

Note. Adapted from "Improving sustainability performance: Specifying, implements and measuring key principles" by M. Epstein & M. Roy, 2003, Journal of General Management, 29(1), pp.15-31. Copyright 2020 by SAGE.


In-Text Citations for Tables, Figures, & Math

  • A table or figure should fit on one page because it is easier for the reader to view the figure or table when presented as a whole instead of split across two pages.
  • In the body of your essay, refer to any tables, figures, math problems, or equations directly.
  • For example: Table 1 provides more specific information on sustainable performance. OR A number of factors must be considered when employing strategic management (see Figure 1).

Accounting Table Example

Table 2

Clarkson and Associates; Income Statement; Year Ending December 31, 2012

Note. Adapted from Module 4: Introduction to Team Building, by Colorado State University Global, 2020, Canvas (https://portal.csuglobal.edu). Copyright 2020 by Colorado State University Global.