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How Do I Cite in APA?

APA Citation

Citing Sources in the Text

  • You must provide an in-text citation when quoting or paraphrasing someone else’s work
  • In-text citations direct the reader to the source’s entry in the reference list
  • When using APA format, follow the author/date method of in-text citations


Author not named in text
One critic of Milgram’s experiments insisted that the subjects “should have been fully informed ofthe possible effects on them” (Baumrind, 2003, p. 34).

Author named in text
Baumrind insisted that the subjects in Milgrim’s study “should have been fully informed of the possible effects on them” (2003, p. 34).

Two authors
One study demonstrates that "non medical needs may be addressed by anyone on the team" (Csikai & Chaitin, 2006, p. 112).


  • If a source has three to five authors, you must name all of the authors in the first citation of a work.
               Example: Pepinsky, Rentl, and Corson (2001), argue…
  • In the second and subsequent references to a work with three to five authors, give only the first author’s name, followed by “et al."
               Example: According to Pepinsky et al. (2001)...
  • For six or more authors, even in the first citation of the work, give only the first author’s name, followed by “et al.”
  • Anonymous works are referred to by full or shortened title.
               Example: ("Study Finds," 1982).
  • When an information source contains no page numbers, just include the author's name and the date of publication in the in-text citation.
               Example: One website describes the side effects of this drug (King, 2005).

Preparing the Reference list

Your reference list should include all the sources you quoted, paraphrased, or summarized in your assignment. This listing appears at the end of your assignment. When formatting your references, follow these standards:

  1. Arrange your sources in alphabetical order by the last name of the author or by title if no author exists.
  2. Double space the entire list (both within and between entries).
  3. Indent the second and subsequent lines of each entry five to seven spaces from the left.
  4. Type the article title in sentence case and the journal title in title case.
  5. Italicize the journal title and volume number.
  6. Include the issue number in parentheses if the journal is paginated by issue.

Avoiding Plagiarism Checklist

  • Is each use of someone else’s material noted in your assignment?
  • Did you reference your sources for graphs, statistics and other borrowed data?
  • Are quotations from another persons’ work exact? Did you use quotation marks?
  • If you paraphrased or summarized someone else’s material did you use your own words and sentence structure?
  • Does your works cited include all the sources you referred to in your assignment?

Citing Print Sources

Speck, D.C. (1998). The pleasure of the crown. Burnaby, BC, Canada: Talonbooks.
2 or more authors
Foster, B.C., & Tisdell, C.A. (1986). Economics in Canadian society. Toronto, ON, Canada: Wiley.
Book with an Editor
Treat, J.W. (Ed.). (1996). Contemporary Japan and popular culture. Honolulu, HI: University of Hawaii
Essay or Chapter in a Book
Keating, N.C. (1992). Older rural Canadians. In D.A. Hay (Ed.), Rural sociology in Canada (pp. 134-154).  
      Toronto, ON, Canada: Oxford University Press.
Academic Journal Article 
Dacey, J. (1994). Management participation in corporate buy-outs. Management Perspectives, 7(4), 20-31.
Signed Article Daily Newspaper
Staples, S. (2005, December 8). A ‘quantum’ leap in communication. Ottawa Citizen, pp. A1, A10.
Custom Courseware
Ford, S. (1996). Doctor-patient interactions in oncology. In C. Sinding (Ed.), Health Studies 4C03 (January
     2004 ed., pp. 125-133). Hamilton, ON: McMaster University.

Citing Electronic Sources

Author (Date or "n.d" if not dated). Title of document. (if given). Retrieved from <URL>
Anderson, D. (2002, May 1). Social constructionism and MOOs. Retrieved from
Online Book
Shotton, M. A. (1989).  Computer addiction?  A study of computer dependency.  [DX Reader version].
     Retrieved from <URL>
Electronic Journal Article (with Digital Object Identifier [DOI])
Herbst-Damm, K. L. & Kulik, J. A. (2005).  Volunteer support, marital status, and the survival times of terminally ill
     patients. Health Psychology24, 225-229.  doi:10.1037/0278-6133.24.2.225
Electronic Journal Article (when DOI is not available)
Wissink, J.A. (2000). Techniques of smoking cessation. Adolescent Medicine2, 15-22. Retrieved 
     from <URL>
Online Newspaper
York, G. (2003, June 9). Chinese waters rising higher. Globe and Mail. Retrieved from <URL>
P. Z. Myers (2007, January 22).  The unfortunate prerequisites and consequences of partioning your mind [Web
     log post] Retrieved from <URL>
Psychometric assessment. (n.d.). Retrieved from The Psychology Wiki: <URL>
Audio Podcast
Van Nuys, D. (Producer). (2006, October 13). Understanding autism [Show 54]. Shrink Rap Radio. Podcast
     retrieved from <URL>
Video Weblog Post (YouTube)
Norton, R. (2006, November 4). How to train a cat to operate a light switch [Video file]. Retrieved from
Course Website/WebCT
Reynolds, W. (2008, September 14). Lecture 1: Sociology and statistics. SOC 1A06 Sociology. WebCT.
     Retrieved from <URL>

Citing Other Sources

Lecturer, A. (Date). Lecture number: Title of lecture [Format]. Retrieved from <URL>
Etches-Johnson, A. (2007). Lecture 1: Library research for communication studies [PowerPoint slides].
     Retrieved from <>
lang, k. d. (2008).  Shadow and the frame.  On Watershed [CD]. New York, NY:  Nonesuch Records.

American Psychological Association (Producer).  (2000).  Responding therapeutically to patient expressions of sexual
     attraction [DVD].  Available from <URL>
Personal Communication
Cite information from your own personal notes from a lecture as a personal communication and refer to it only in the body of your essay.
(P. Smith, personal communication, November, 16, 2002) 


Mills Quick Reference (1st floor), Thode Quick Reference, Innis Reference BF 76.7 .P83 2010




The OWL at Purdue: APA Style and Formatting Guide

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