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Evaluating Resources: Conference Proceedings


Conference proceedings are the collection of papers and/or posters that were presented at an association's conference or meeting. Conferences provide opportunities for people to present their research, and get input from other researchers and colleagues in their field.

Conference proceedings can help you discover:

  • who is researching a topic
  • what is currently being researched in a particular field


Note: Papers presented at conferences are working papers; they are not peer-reviewed journal articles. Many of these papers will go on to be published in peer-reviewed journals, but others will not.

Identify conference proceedings

Conference proceeding reference citations look a little different than your standard journal article citation.

Here are a few clues that will help you identify conference proceeding reference citations:

  • Date: The date includes the year, month, and days the conference or meeting was held.
  • Type of session: The citation indicates the type of session, such as Conference session or Poster presentation.
  • Location: Where the conference or meeting was held is included in the reference citation.


In APA 7th, a reference citation for a conference proceedings found online generally follows this format:

Author(s). (Year, month, days). Title of presentation. [Type of session]. Title of conference, location. URL if available


Here is an example:

Maruyama, M., Douglas, S., & Robertson, S. (2013, January 7-10). Design teams as change agents: Diplomatic design in the open data movement. [Conference session]. Hawaii International Conference on Systems Science, Wailea, HI, United States.


Note: Not all conference proceeding reference citations will follow this format exactly. Some conference proceedings may be collected and published in a journal or book format; in this case the citation would then use a journal or book citation format. If you have questions about citing a conference proceeding using APA style, please contact the Writing Center.


Here is an example of what the first page of a conference proceeding may look like:

2013 46th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences. Design teams as change agents