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Citing Sources

Guide to citing sources in APA and MLA styles (more styles coming soon).

American Psychological Association (APA) Citation Style

This guide is a quick introduction to APA style and common citations. Be sure to consult the Publication Manual of the APA and APA 6th Edition Style Blog Archive for detailed standards and procedures. 

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APA Reference List

Basic Format:
Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Year of publication). Title of article. Title of Source, Volume (Issue), page range. Retrieved from [URL web address].

I'm citing a...

 

  1. Author(s) [Last Name, First Initial., Middle Initial., &. If there are more than 8 authors, only list 7 of the authors and include an & and an ellipsis (...) between the sixth author and last author].
  2. Year (xxxx).
  3. Title of the article [Only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized].
  4. Title of the journal [Capitalized and in italics],
  5. Volume # of the journal [in italics]
  6. Issue # (if any),
  7. Page range [xx-xx].
  8. DOI (Digital Object Identifier) (if any; may need to open the .pdf of the article to locate the DOI or check the electronic record)

 

Ashing‐Giwa, K. T., Padilla, G., Tejero, J., Kraemer, J., Wright, K., Coscarelli, A., Clayton, S., ... & Hills, D. (2004). Understanding the breast cancer experience of women: A qualitative study of African American, Asian American, Latina and Caucasian cancer survivors. Psycho‐Oncology: Journal of the Psychological, Social and Behavioral Dimensions of Cancer, 13(6), 408-428. https://doi.org/10.1002/pon.750

 

  1. Author(s) [Last Name, First Initial., Middle Initial., &].
  2. Year, Month, Date (xxxx, Month xx).
  3. Title of the article [Only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized].
  4. Title of the newspaper or publication [Capitalized and in italics],
  5. URL Retrieved from [URL]

 

Kennedy, M. (2018, October 15). To prevent wildfires, PG&E pre-emptively cuts power to thousands in California. NPR. Retrieved from https://www.npr.org/2018/10/15/657468903/to-prevent-wildfires-pg-e-preemptively-cuts-power-to-thousands-in-california

 

Print Book
  1. Author(s) [Last Name, First Initial., Middle Initial., & If there are more than 8 authors, only list 7 of the authors and include an & and an ellipsis (...) between the sixth author and last author].
  2. Year (xxxx).
  3. Title of the book [in italics; only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized].
  4. Edition(# ed.). [if any]
  5. City, State of Publication [Full name of city, abbreviation of state]:
  6. Publisher.

 

Silbert-Flagg, J., & Pillitteri, A. (2018). Maternal & child health nursing : Care of the childbearing & childrearing family (8th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Wolters Kluwer.
eBook
  1. Author(s) [Last Name, First Initial., Middle Initial., & If there are more than 8 authors, only list 7 of the authors and include an & and an ellipsis (...) between the sixth author and last author].
  2. Year (xxxx).
  3. Title of the book [Only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized, and in italics].
  4. E-reader version, if any [Kingle, ePub, HTML. etc].
  5. Edition, if any (# ed.).
  6. URL Retrieved from [URL or subscription database].

 

Lavretsky, H. (2014). Resilience and aging: Research and practice. Retrieved from https://www.press.jhu.edu

 

  1. Author(s) of the chapter [Last Name, First Initial., Middle Initial., &].
  2. Year (xxxx).
  3. Title of the chapter [Only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized].
  4. Editor(s) of the book In [First Initial, Middle Initial, Last Name &...] (Ed.) or (Eds.),
  5. Title of the book [Only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized, and in italics]
  6. Page range (pp. xxx-xxx).
  7. City, State of Publication [Full name of city, abbreviation of state]:
  8. Publisher.
  9. URL, if any Retrieved from [URL or subscription database].

 

McFarland, J. (2017). On privilege, authority, and abuses of professorial power. In E. Knox (Ed.), Trigger warnings: History, theory, context (pp. 165-178). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
.

 

  1. Author or organization [Full name of organization].
  2. Year (xxxx). [or (n.d.). for no date]
  3. Title of page, section, or document [Only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized].
  4. Format description [factsheet, blog post, lecture notes etc].
  5. URLRetrieved from [URL].

 

Electronic Frontier Foundation. (n.d.). Net neutrality. Retrieved from https://www.eff.org/issues/net-neutrality

 

  1. Author, government agency, or organization [Full name of organization].
  2. Year (xxxx). [or (n.d.). for no date]
  3. Title of the report or document [Only the first word of the title and subtitle and proper nouns are capitalized, in italics].
  4. Report number (Report No. ## ). [if any]
  5. URL Retrieved from [URL].

 

San Francisco Department of Public Health. (2019). Sexually transmitted disease annual summary, 2017 Retrieved from https://www.sfdph.org/dph/files/reports/StudiesData/STD/SFSTDAnnlSum2017.pdf

APA In-text Citations

Basic Format:
(Last Name, Year).

I'm using...

If you're quoting the exact words of someone else, introduce the quote with an in-text citation in parentheses. Any sentence punctuation goes after the closing parenthesis.

  • According to Shavers (2007), "Direct quote" (p. #).
  • Shavers (2007) found that "Direct quote" (p. #).
  • [Some other introduction] "Direct quote" (Shavers, 2007, p. 1021).

 

If you're directly quoting more than 40 words...

Use a blockquote. Block quotes don't need quotation marks, but are indented 1/2" as a visual cue of a citation. The in-text citation in parentheses goes after the punctuation of the quotation.

Shavers (2007) study found the following:

While research studies have established that socioeconomic status influences disease incidence, severity and access to healthcare, there has been relatively less study of the specific manner in which low SES influences receipt of quality care and consequent morbidity and mortality among patients with similar disease characteristics, particularly among those who have gained access to the healthcare system. (p. 1021)

Pro Tip: Use direct quotes sparingly! Research cited in an APA paper is focused more on the synthesis of findings from a variety of research studies, and less about the exact phrasing or argument of an individual.

Paraphrasing or summarizing the main findings or takeaways from a research article is the preferred method of citing sources in an APA paper. Always include the last name of the author(s) and the year of the article, so your reader can find the full citation in the reference list.

According to Shavers (2007), limitations of studying socioeconomic status in research on health disparities include difficulties in collecting data on socioeconomic status and the complications of classifying women, children, and employment status, among others (p. 1016).

I'm citing...

You only need the author's last name and the year.

(Abrams, 2018)

Connect both authors' last names with & (ampersand), and include the year.

(Wegener & Petty, 1994)

If there are 3-5 authors...

In the first in-text citation:
(Kernis, Cornell, Sun, Berry, & Harlow, 1993)

In subsequent in-text citations:
(Kernis et al., 1993)

If there are 6+ authors...

You only need the first author's name, followed by et al., and the year.
(Harris et al., 2018)

If the work has no author, use a shortened form of the title in parentheses. Note that titles are capitalized in in-text citations.

Book with no author: (Interpersonal Skills, 2019)

Article with no author: ("Understanding Sensory Memory," 2018)

Formatting Your APA Paper

In this section: 

What does the general format of an APA paper look like?

How do I make a hanging indent in Word?

How do I make a hanging indent in Word?

1. Highlight the citaiton with your cursor. 

2. Right click. 

3. Select Paragraph.

4. Under Indentation, select Special and Hanging.

Animated gif of creating a hanging indent in Word. Highlight the full citation. Right click. Go to Paragraph. To to the Special drop down menu, select Hanging. Select Okay.

How do I get my page numbers to start at 1 on the second page?

How do I get my page numbers to start at 1 on the second page? 

1. Double click the header on the second page. 

2. Select Page Numbers and top right. 

3. Right click the page number. 

4. Select Format Page Numbers.

5. Change Start at from 1 to 0. 

Note: Make sure the header is set to Different First Page for the running head. 

Animated gif of starting page numbers at 1 on the second page in Word.

CC License

Creative Commons License CC by NC 4.0 This guide is adapted from a guide created by Tessa Withorn and Maggie Clarke and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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