Academia Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for academics and those enrolled in higher education. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm about to submit a paper and the format requires a running title in addition to the actual title. What is it for, and is it supposed to be longer or shorter than the actual title? Should I abbreviate the title, or take the opportunity to convey another message that could not be included in the main title?

share|improve this question
up vote 23 down vote accepted

Running title: "the title or abbreviated title of a volume printed at the top of left-hand text pages or sometimes of all text pages"

It allows readers to determine which paper they're looking at just by glancing at the top of the page.

If your actual title is already very short, use your actual title. If your actual title is not very short, use an abbreviated version of it as the running title. (The maximum length is often set by the publisher; for example, APA style sets the maximum length of the running head to 50 characters, APS style allows 55 characters, etc.)

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.