An entry in the reference list contains information on a specific publication, allowing readers to find the publication. The information is presented in a standard format, including order of information, use of italics and parentheses, and other markers to help distinguish between different parts of the reference entry. APA style entries follow this basic format:
Author. (Publication date). Title of document. Publishing information. Electronic retrieval information if applicable.
For specific examples of numerous reference formats with notes and tips, see the Common Reference List Examples page.
Start with each author's last name, followed by a comma and the first and middle initials (or just the first initial if that is all that is provided). Separate each author with a comma, and include the ampersand (&) before the last name in the list. Note that you should include a comma even in a list of just two names.
List authors' names in the order in which they appear on the publication. The order of names often carries significance, so it is important not to change the order in your listing. To be listed as first author for a publication usually means that person is the lead researcher on the project.
Severino, C., & Knight, M.
Graves, S. J., Anders, K. C., & Balester, V. M.
Moore, J. L., Rosinski, P., Peeples, T., Pigg, S., Rife, M. C., Brunk-Chavez, B. ... Tasaka, R.
American Psychological Association.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Lai, P., & Smith, L. C., (Eds.)
Bodhran, A. T., (Ed.)
For most publications, include just the year in parentheses.
For publications with no publication date noted, use the letters n.d. within the parentheses to indicate "no date." The most common type of resource with no date is a webpage.
For some serial publications like newspapers and popular magazines that are easier to find with the month or day of publication rather than a volume and issue number (such as a weekly news magazine like Time or a daily newspaper like The New York Times), include the month or month and day.
Include the title of the document that you are referencing. Depending on the type of resource, you may include more than one title (for an article and the journal, for instance). Do not add quotation marks around titles (unless part of the original title).
For articles, you should generally provide volume, issue, and page numbers for the publishing information. Italicize the volume number, enclose the issue number (in plain text, not italics) in parentheses, and use an en dash between the page numbers. (In APA 6, iclude issue numbers only if the issues all start over with page 1.) For examples and more information, see our Common Reference List Examples page.
For books and book chapters, provide the name of the publisher. In a situation where the author of a book is the same as the publisher, omit the publisher from the reference entry. (Note that in APA 6, publisher location information also preceded the publisher's name. Publisher location information is no longer a part of the reference entry for books in APA 7.)
If a work has a digital object identifier (DOI) number assigned to it, include it in the reference entry, regardless of whether you used the print or online version of the source. If a work has no DOI number, format the entry as if you accessed the print version. If you accessed an article from an academic database and it has no DOI assigned to it, do not include the database URL or name in the entry. Format the entry as if you accessed the print version.
Article in a journal:
Thompson, I., & Wittek, A. L. (2016). Writing as a mediational tool for learning in the collaborative composition of texts. Learning, Culture and Social Interaction, 11, 85–96. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lcsi.2016.05.004
Chapter in an edited ebook:
Damron, R., & Brooks, R. C. (2017). Using autoethnography to bring together writing center and composition practicums. In A. J. Myatt & L. L. Gaillet (Eds.), Writing program and writing center collaborations: Transcending boundaries. https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-59932-2_3
Provide a uniform resource locator (URL) for works that do not have DOI numbers assigned to them (e.g., webpages and popular periodicals).
Eaton, T. V., & Akers, M. D. (2007). Whistleblowing and good governance. CPA Journal, 77(6), 66–71. http://www.cpajournal.com/
For webpages and other online content, provide the URL address that links directly to the source. The hyperlink should be active. "Retrieved from" should not be included before most URLs; simply insert the hyperlink.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (n.d.) Programs & services. https://www.hhs.gov/programs/index.html
Note that there are substantial differences in how to format DOI and URL numbers in APA 6 and APA 7. If you are finishing a doctoral capstone study in APA 6, make sure to refer to your APA 6 manual for further guidance.