The Results

The results section follows directly after the method section, has a centred bold heading (no underline). It involves specifying what data were collected and the statistics used to analyse them. Presentation of the data is often in summary form to display essential findings for your reader. Begin with descriptive statistics (e.g., demographics, means, and standard deviations) and then present inferential statistics (e.g., t tests, ANOVAS, and correlations). The outcomes of statistical analyses may be presented in a table or a figure with a sentence or two in text describing the findings. Also see Writing the Results for more details on how to write the results using APA formatting.

Reporting Statistics

You should report whether the finding was statistically significant or not, the relevant statistic, degrees of freedom, and the significance level. Statistical symbols are italicised (e.g. M, SD, r, t, p, df, F) but Greek letters and vectors are not (e.g. β and α). Two decimal places should be reported for descriptive and inferential statistics, effect sizes, and other statistics except for p values. When reporting p values report exact statistics to two or three decimal places (e.g. p = .031), however, for values less than .001 (i.e. p = .000) report p .001.

Note You may need to refer to statistics textbooks to ensure correct expression of statistical results according to the analysis used – this will become increasingly important as you progress through your degree program. Do not follow formatting conventions used by journals as they have specific formatting standards. An example of an appropriate results section follows:


….An independent groups t test was used to test the significance of the difference between groups. The mean depression scores for the therapy group (M = 10.12, SD = 3.54) was significantly lower than for the control group (M = 17.52, SD = 4.67) and with a large effect size, t(10) = 4.61, p = .009, d = 1.79. However, the depression group (M = 7.34, SD = 2.13) did not differ significantly from the control group (M = 7.87, SD = 1.98) in anxiety scores, t(10) = 0.45, p = .66, d = 0.26

It is important to note that limited interpretation of the data is offered at this stage. In addition, EITHER a table or figure may be used to display your results, but not both. Choose the one that best presents your findings. Check with your tutor and the marking criteria for specific details on what and how results should be presented in the report.