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This guide is based on the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th edition. It will assist you by providing examples for:
Not all of your questions will be answered here, as we have focused on commonly used sources and formatting.
For more detailed information and other examples:
Note: The ebook version of the Publication Manual is not available for sale to libraries.
Why we cite
When we write a paper, we gather background information and build arguments drawing on the work, knowledge, ideas, expressions, and reportings of others.
This information is found in many places -- journal articles, books, YouTube videos, blogs, maybe even in an email. Whatever the source, we are required to acknowledge who or what that source is when we refer to the work in our own.
We may refer to another person's work for many reasons. These include:
When we cite
Citations create necessary links, directing your reader to the source you're crediting. We make an in-text citation that links to our reference list at the end of our document, which then links to the original source.
For this reason, when we talk about citations, we're talking about two different instances, once in the body of our text -- In-text citations -- once at the end of our text -- the reference list.
DOI. A digital object identifier, a persistent and unique number set to link back to that one resource located online.
URL. A uniform resource locator, a link to a resource located online. It can be updated over time and often not considered to be persistent, although examples of permanent URLs do exist.
Common academic research databases. These include most databases available through the library, where materials are not uniquely located and may be available through multiple databases (e.g. PsycINFO, Academic Search Complete, MEDLINE, Google Scholar, ProQuest eBook Central, etc.). Alternatively, a database that contains unique information needs to be listed in your citation, and is not considered to be common (e.g. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and UpToDate) (APA, 2020, p. 297).
Article number. If an online journal article does not have page numbers, it often has an article number instead. You can list this as you would page numbers for the article.
Live link. In this edition of APA, links in citations are meant to be live. This means that users can click on them and a new window will open and take them to the resource. Previously, the links were to only be written as text and not linked.
In-text citations should always appear right after the content you are summarizing, paraphrasing, or quoting. They only include a minimal amount of information, but create a link to a more fulsome citation at the end of your document.
In-text citations are composed of 2, sometimes 3, elements: the author(s)' last name(s), the date of publication, and, if quoting, the page number(s). If the quote spans multiple pages, use pp. instead of p.
The format is as follows:
Paraphrasing, or summarizing, takes two forms. Either you indicate in your sentence that an author has said something (narrative), or you write something, and then attribute that to the author in brackets at the end of the idea (parenthetical).
Narrative in-text citation: Raimi (2018) outlines the risks and benefits of fracking through an economic analysis and energy security benefits.
Parenthetical in-text citation: Several benefits and risks can be identified in the implementation of fracking for oil extraction. Considerations include regulation, water pollution, tremors etc. (Raimi, 2018).
When quoting, you also need to include the page number. Again, a quote can be phrased in two ways:
Narrative in-text citation: According to Raimi (2018) the “social risks of increased oil and gas production has been widely debated in the news media, without a nuanced understanding of the environmental and economic factors" (p. 145).
Parenthetical in-text citation: As has been argued elsewhere, the “social risks of increased oil and gas production has been widely debated in the news media, without a nuanced understanding of the environmental and economic factors" (Raimi, 2018, p. 145).
Sometimes there is no date of publication provided. If this is the case you would use n.d. instead.
Narrative in-text citation: Raimi (n.d.) outlines the risks and benefits of fracking through an economic analysis and energy security benefits.
Parenthetical in-text citation: Several benefits and risks can be identified in the implementation of fracking for oil extraction. Considerations include regulation, water pollution, tremors etc. (Raimi, n.d.).
More than one author
Use the following table as a guide (modified from APA, 2020, p. 266):
|# of Authors||Narrative Example||Parenthetical Example|
|1||Bradley (2017)||(Bradley, 2017)|
|2||Janmaat and Rahimova (2018)||(Janmaat & Rahimova, 2018)|
|3 or more||Mei et al. (2018)||(Mei et al., 2018)|
Group author with abbreviation
Criminal Intelligence Service Canada (CISC, 2019)
(Criminal Intelligence Service Canada (CISC), 2019)
|Group author without abbreviation||Foundry (2020)||(Foundry, 2020)|
Some general rules to consider when creating your reference list: