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APA Style (7th ed.): References and In-Text Citations

Building a Reference

For full information on formatting author names in your reference list, see sections 9.7-9.12 of the Publication Manual.

  • Authors are listed by last name and initial(s) (e.g. Watson, J. H.).
  • If there is more than one author, use commas to separate their names. 
  • For two to 20 authors, use an ampersand (&) before the last author.
  • If there are 20 or fewer authors, you must list out all of the authors.
  • If there are 21 or more authors, you must list out the first 19, add an ellipsis, and then list the last author's name.
  • If there is no author, move the title to the author position, before the date of publication.

For full information on formatting publication dates in you reference list, see sections 9.13-9.17 of the Publication Manual.

  • Dates are listed in parentheses followed by a period.
  • For books, use the date listed on the copyright page.
  • For journal articles, use the date of the volume.
  • For webpages and websites, make sure that the date applies specifically to the content you are using.
  • If a work has no date, list the date element as (n.d.). 

For full information on formatting titles in your reference list, see sections 9.18-9.22 of the Publication Manual.

The Essentials

  • Use sentence case capitalization for titles.
  • For most titles in periodicals (e.g., journal, magazine, newspapers), omit articles (e.g., "The", "A"). Some exception include The New York Times, The Washington Post,...

More Details

  • For references that have additional title/identifying information (e.g. edition, volume, etc.), place any additional information in parentheses after the title of the reference. Separate multiple pieces of information with commas.
  • If your reference doesn't have a title, put a description of the work in square brackets in the title section.

For full information on formatting source information in your reference list, see sections 9.23-9.37 of the Publication Manual.

  • For books, include the publisher's name as well as any applicable DOIs or URLs.
  • For journal articles, include the journal's information (i.e. title, volume, issue, and page or article numbers) as well as any applicable DOIs or URLs.
  • For social media posts, include the site name and the URL.
  • For websites and webpages, include the website name and the URL.
  • If your reference doesn't have a source, you can't include it in the reference list.

NOTE: If your reference contains a URL, make sure that the URL works and that it points directly to the reference.

Creating In-Text Citations

This APA video (recorded on July 2020) covers in-depth information on how to:
1) Create and format in-text citations for all types of print and online works
2) Integrate source material into a paper, and
3) Cite at an appropriate level

Creating In-Text Citations

Citation Generators:

1) Citation Builder: https://www.lib.ncsu.edu/citationbuilder/#/default/default