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APA Citation: Citations & Reference List

Click through the tabs to learn the basics, find examples, and watch video tutorials.

Citation / Cite / In-text citation

Cite your sources! You will cite when you paraphrase and quote.

Sources? The places you find information: books, websites, magazines, etc.

Citations appear in the body of your paper. Citations point the reader to your references.

Citations are also called in-text citations.

When you cite a source in the body of your paper, you are giving credit to the creator or author of the idea you are writing about, or to the image you have copied. You cite to avoid plagiarism.

In the body of your paper, the in-text citation records the creator's name (author) and date of creation  (publication date). If you are using a quotation, you will also include the page number (if available).

There are different ways to format in-text citations - it depends on the sentence.

Click the tabs in this box to learn: Paraphrase, Quote & In-text Citation.

An in-text citation is brief - it is not a detailed description of the source. The full details of the source make a reference and a reference is located at the end of your paper in the reference list.

 

References

References appear at the end of your assignment with the  heading, References.This is a reference list.

A reference is formatted in this order and with this information:

  1. Author
  2. Publication date
  3. Title
  4. Publishing information (publisher/URL)

A reference list is alphabetically ordered and double-spaced. If your instructor requires, a reference list may also be organized by source type with headings (articles, books, websites, etc).

When you cite a source in the body of your paper you will create a reference in your reference list.

There is an exception, mentioning an entire website does not require a reference. More info? Click tab: Examples.

 

Sample Paper? Need an example?

Sample Paper in APA Style

 

APA Style Blog: References verse Citations

In-text citation explained:

In-text citations are in the body of your paper - AUTHOR, DATE.

In-text citations tell the readers of your paper who is responsible for the ideas and data you are writing about.

An in-text citation is needed when you refer to or mention something you read, and when you summarize, paraphrase, or quote from another source.

For every in-text citation in your paper, there must be a corresponding entry in the reference list of the paper.

The in-text citation does not include all the information about the source - only AUTHOR and DATE. The reference list provides the full details.


YouTube logo Watch the short videos included on this page to quickly learn about in-text citation.

More information: In-Text Citations: The Basics. In-Text Citations: Author/Authors [by Purdue University]


Paraphrase Example

In-text citation with a corresponding reference

.... in the body of a paper... in-text citations - paraphrasing examples:

Eagly and Carli (2003) suggest that the female leadership style is more effective in the contemporary business environment. They also note that due to the glass ceiling phenomenon, women must demonstrate extra competence to reach managerial positions and corporate boards. Rosener (1990) states that female leaders are more flexible and better able to deal with ambiguity than male leaders are. These abilities are essential factors for the success of any modern business in an uncertain context (Eagly & Carli, 2003).


... end of the paper ... the reference list

References

Eagly, A.H., & Carli, L.L. (2003). The female leadership advantage: An evaluation of the evidence. The Leadership Quarterly, 14(6), 807-834. Retrieved from EBSCOhost Business Source Complete database.

Rosener, J.B. (1990). How women lead. Harvard Business Review, 68(6), 119, 125. Retrieved from EBSCOhost Business Source Complete database.

When to use AND or &

APA Style in-text citations include the author and date, either both inside parentheses or with the author names in running text and the date in parentheses. Here are two examples of in-text citation: 

  • After the intervention, children increased in the number of books read per week (Smith & Wexwood, 2010)
  • Smith and Wexwood (2010) reported that after the intervention, children increased in the number of books read per week. 

The "and" in Smith and Wexwood is written as an ampersand (&) inside parentheses and as the word and outside of parentheses, as shown in the examples above.

Source: APA Style Blog: Writing In-Text Citations in APA Style


Quotation Example

In-text citation with a corresponding reference

In your assignment, anytime you use someone's ideas and words you must include an in-text citation.

Every in-text citation has a corresponding reference in your reference list. A reference contains all the information someone would need to go back to the original source you used.


Example: A direct quote under 40 words:

 Esty and Winston (2009) claim, "Careful use of the environmental perspective can help to reduce costs and risks" (p. 282). However, this statement is another example of over-simplification...

References

Esty, D.C. & Winston, A. S. (2009). Green to gold: How smart companies use environmental strategy to innovate, create value, and build competitive advantage. Hoboken, New Jersey: Yale University Press.


Example: A direct quote 40 words or more. Use a block quote format.

Climate change is impacting companies and will likely change how business is conducted globally. Esty and Winston (2009) state,

Behind the Green Wave lie two interlocking sources of pressure. First, the limits of the natural world could constrain business operations, realign markets, and threaten the planet's well-being. Second, companies face a growing spectrum of stakeholders who are concerned about the environment. (p. 8)

The "Green Wave" that Esty and Winston (2009) refer to means......

Variation

If the authors were not used to introduce this quotation in the sentence prior the block quote, the citation at the end of the quote needs to include the author names, as well as the year and page.

...concerned about the environment. (Esty & Winston, 2009, p. 8)

Reference - Book format

Esty, D.C. & Winston, A. S. (2009). Green to gold: How smart companies use environmental strategy to innovate, create value, and build competitive advantage. Hoboken, New Jersey: Yale University Press.

Image result for Esty, D.C. & Winston, A. S. (2009). Green to gold

References

APA Style Blog - Quick Answers - References

References appear at the end of your assignment with the  heading, References.This is a reference list.

A citation in the body of your paper must have a reference in the reference list.

If you read a book or an article while researching, but you do not paraphrase or quote this information in your paper, do not include this source in your reference list.

A reference is formatted in this order and with this information:

  1. Author
  2. Publication date
  3. Title
  4. Publishing information (publisher/URL)

APA Style provides guidelines for different types of sources: book, articles, reports, etc. Click her to open the tab EXAMPLES.


Here are four formatting rules for a reference list

  1. Everything in APA style is double-spaced, including your reference list.
  2. Reference lists have a hanging indent. The first line of each entry starts at the left margin of the page, and each subsequent line of the entry is indented (0.5 inches = a standard tab in).
  3. The reference list is alphabetized.
  4. Punctuation and CAPITALIZATION is important - there are specific guidelines.

If your instructor requires, a reference list may also be organized with headings by type (articles, books, websites, etc).


Do you want to see what a reference list looks like?

View the SAMPLE PAPER


Need examples of references?

Click the tab EXAMPLES and find references for many different sources: books, articles, databases, online...


Reference for a book

Author, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of work: Capital letter to start subtitle. City, State: Publisher.


Reference for an article


YouTube logo APA Formatting - Reference List Basics:

This video teaches how to set up a reference list, and teaches the basics of creating citations.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HpAOi8-WUY4&list=PL8F43A67F38DE3D5D&index=2

YouTube logo APA Reference List: Complex Authors

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AR2ze2oxww4


This video tutorial teaches how to create ARTICLE citations and references.

Produced by University of Vermont: Dana Medical Library

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Sample Paper in APA Style

SAMPLE PAPER

Learn more about this Sample Paper. Watch the video APA Formatting - Basics by Purdue University.

VIDEO. In-text Citation

VIDEO. Quoting

What do I do?

Missing information?

Questions about authors or dates?

Confused about punctuation and capitalization?

APA FAQ