Reference list entries contain specific publication information, 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.
For specific examples of numerous reference formats with notes and tips, see the Common Reference List Examples page. For help on evaluating resources and identifying types of resources, please visit the library's Evaluating Resources pages.
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. When creating a reference for a work with two group authors, use an ampersand, not a comma to separate them (as you would with two individual authors).
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.
American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.).
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Note that when multiple layers of government agencies are listed as authors in a work, use just the most specific author in the reference.
Instead of “U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute,” use the most specific author.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (n.d.). Health and awareness. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/education-and-awareness
When creating a reference for a work with multiple authors, provide surnames and initials for up to 20 authors. For sources with 21 or more authors, use ellipsis points after the name of the 19th author, followed by the final author's surname and initials.
Steyer, T., Ortiz, K., Schemmel, L., Armstrong, B., Hicks, L., Simac, M., Perez, K., Nyung, J., Schlenz, W., Robins, K., O’Neil, O., Muhammad, E., Moore, J. L., Rosinski, P., Peeples, T., Pigg, S., Rife, M. C., Brunk-Chavez, B.,Tasaka, R.... Curtis, F.
When providing a reference entry to a whole edited collection, list the editors at the beginning of the entry and include the abbreviation Ed. (for one editor) or Eds. (for two or more editors) in parentheses after the names.
Bodhran, A. T. (Ed.).
Lai, P., & Smith, L. C. (Eds.).
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.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.). Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). https://www.cdc.gov/copd/index.html
Newspapers and popular magazines are easier to find with the month or day of publication rather than a volume and issue number. For periodicals such as a weekly news magazine like Time or a daily newspaper like The New York Times, include the month or month and day.
Hubbard, A. (2014, January 8). New York to be 21st state to OK Medical Marijuana. Los Angeles Times. https://www.latimes.com/nation/la-sh-new-york-medical-marijuana-graphic-20140108-story.html
For republished texts, use the date from the republished version you read. At the very end of the reference list entry, include a note in parentheses with the original publication date.
Piaget, J. (2000). The psychology of the child. Basic Books.https://archive.org/details/psychologyofchil00piag_0/page/n5 (Original work published 1969)
For in-text citations of these republished texts, include both dates with a slash separating them, listing the original publication date first and then the date of the republished version you read.
Include the title of the document that you are referencing. Depending on the type of resource, you may have to 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).
Simpson, A.V., Stewart, C., & Pitsis, T. (2014). Normal compassion: A framework for compassionate decision making. Journal of Business Ethics, 119(4), 473–491. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-013-1831-y
For articles, you should generally provide the volume, issue number (if available), and page numbers for the publishing information. Italicize the volume number and use an en dash between the page numbers. For examples and more information, see the Common Reference List Examples page.
Burgess, R. (2019). Rethinking global health: Frameworks of power. Routledge.
World Health Organization. (2019). International statistical classification of diseases and related health problems (11th ed.). https://icd.who.int/
Provide the digital object identifier (DOI) number for articles and books that have them. For articles and books without DOI numbers retrieved from common academic research databases, there is no need to provide any additional electronic retrieval information (the reference list entry looks like the entry for a print copy of the source). For articles and books without DOI number retrieved on the open web, include the URL.
Please see the Quick Guide to Electronic Resources for more guidance on how to format DOI numbers, URLs, and other electronically accessed information.
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