APA In-Text Citations

Follow the author-date method of in-text citation. This means that the author's last name and the year of publication for the source should appear in the text, for example, (Jones, 1998), and a complete reference should appear in the reference list at the end of the paper.

Short quotations

If you are directly quoting from a work, you will need to include the author, year of publication, and page number for the reference (preceded by "p."). Introduce the quotation with a signal phrase that includes the author's last name followed by the date of publication in parentheses.

Examples:

  • According to Jones (1998), "Students often had difficulty using APA style, especially when it was their first time" (p. 199).
  • Jones (1998) found "students often had difficulty using APA style" (p. 199); what implications does this have for teachers?

If the author is not named in a signal phrase, place the author's last name, the year of publication, and the page number in parentheses after the quotation.

  • She stated, "Students often had difficulty using APA style" (Jones, 1998, p. 199), but she did not offer an explanation as to why.

Long Quotations

Place direct quotations that are 40 words or longer in a free-standing block of typewritten lines and omit quotation marks. Start the quotation on a new line, indented 1/2 inch from the left margin, i.e., in the same place you would begin a new paragraph. Type the entire quotation on the new margin, and indent the first line of any subsequent paragraph within the quotation 1/2 inch from the new margin. Maintain double-spacing throughout. The parenthetical citation should come after the closing punctuation mark.

Example:

Jones's (1998) study found the following: Students often had difficulty using APA style, especially when it was their first time citing sources. This difficulty could be attributed to the fact that many students failed to purchase a style manual or to ask their teacher for help. (p. 199)

Paraphrasing

If you are referring to an idea from another work but NOT directly quoting the material, or making reference to an entire book, article or other work, you only have to make reference to the author and year of publication and not the page number in your in-text reference. All sources that are cited in the text must appear in the reference list at the end of the paper.

Examples:

  • According to Jones (1998), APA style is a difficult citation format for first-time learners.
  • APA style is a difficult citation format for first-time learners (Jones, 1998, p. 199).

Sources Without Page Numbers

When an electronic source lacks page numbers, you should try to include information that will help readers find the passage being cited. When an electronic document has numbered paragraphs, use the abbreviation "para." followed by the paragraph number (Hall, 2001, para. 5).

If the paragraphs are not numbered and the document includes headings, provide the appropriate heading and specify the paragraph under that heading.

According to Smith (1997), ... (Mind Over Matter section, para. 6).

Citing Authors in-text

  • Please note this change with the 7th edition of the APA Manual: The in-text citation for works with three or more authors is now shortened right from the first citation. You only include the first author’s name and “et al.”.  For example: (Taylor et al., 2018)
     
Content last reviewed: January 13, 2020