Answered By: Rachel Willard
Last Updated: Aug 13, 2015     Views: 226

A serial comma (often called an Oxford comma) is the comma that is used to separate items in a list of three or more things.

APA uses the serial comma between every element in a list. Thus, APA uses the serial comma even before the words "and" or "or." For example, view the commas in the sentence below:

The interview subjects discussed management, promotions, hiring, and other workplace topics.

Even when the list is made up of longer sentence elements, the same rules apply:

The researcher requested consent forms to hand out, determined interest in the project by asking a few preliminary questions, distributed information regarding the project’s guidelines, and eventually found his population.

 

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