Note:This page reflects the latest version of the APA Publication Manual (i.e., APA 7), which released in October 2019. The equivalent resource for the older APA 6 stylecan be found here.
Important Note: Some electronic citations necessitate the use of brackets. APA style dictates that brackets should directly surround their content without spaces (e.g., [bracketed content] should look like this). When possible, include the year, month, and date in references. If the month and date are not available, use the year of publication. Additionally, APA 7thedition no longer requires the use of “Retrieved from” before URLs or DOIs; special exceptions, however, are made for resources that are unarchived. Including the retrieval date for these sources indicates to readers that the version of the work they retrieve may be different than what was originally used.
Please note: the following contains a list of the most commonly cited electronic sources. For a complete list of how to cite electronic sources, please refer to the 7th edition of the APA Publication Manual.
Webpage or Piece of Online Content
If the page names an individual author, cite their name first:
Lastname, F. M. (Year, Month Date). Title of page. Site name. URL
Price, D. (2018, March 23). Laziness does not exist. Medium. https://humanparts.medium.com/laziness-does-not-exist-3af27e312d01
If the resource was written by a group or organization, use the name of the group/organization as the author. Additionally, if the author and site name are the same, omit the site name from the citation.
Group name. (Year, Month Date). Title of page. Site name. URL
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. (2019, November 21). Justice served: Case closed for over 40 dogfighting victims. https://www.aspca.org/news/justice-served-case-closed-over-40-dogfighting-victims
If the page's author is not listed, start with the title instead. Additionally, include a retrieval date when the page's content is likely to change over time (like, for instance, if you're citing a wiki that is publicly edited).
Title of page. (Year, Month Date). Site name. Retrieved Month Date, Year, from URL
Tuscan white bean pasta.(2018, February 25). Budgetbytes. Retrieved March 18, 2020, fromhttps://www.budgetbytes.com/tuscan-white-bean-pasta/
If the date of publication is not listed, use the abbreviation (n.d.).
Author or Group name. (n.d.).Title of page. Site name (if applicable). URL
National Alliance on Mental Illness. (n.d.). Mental health conditions. https://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions
APA 7 treats Wikipedia articles as special instances of entries in reference works. Thus, there are a few differences between reference entries for pages on Wikipedia and those for generic webpages.
Title of article. (Year, Month Date). InWikipedia.URL of archived version of page
Quantum mechanics. (2019, November 19). In Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Quantum_mechanics&oldid=948476810
Wikipedia articles often update frequently. For this reason, the date refers to the date that the cited version of the page was published. Note also that the manual recommends linking to the archived version of the page, rather than the current version of the page on the site, since the latter can change over time. Access the archived version by clicking "View History," then clicking the date/timestamp of the version you'd like to cite.
Online Scholarly Journal Article: Citing DOIs
Please note: Because online materials can potentially change URLs, APA recommends providing a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), when it is available, as opposed to the URL. DOIs are an attempt to provide stable, long-lasting links for online articles. They are unique to their documents and consist of a long alphanumeric code. Many—but not all—publishers will provide an article's DOI on the first page of the document.
Note also that some online bibliographies provide an article's DOI but may "hide" the code under a button which may read "Article" or may be an abbreviation of a vendor's name like "CrossRef" or "PubMed." This button will usually lead the user to the full article which will include the DOI. Find DOIs from print publications or ones that go to dead links with doi.org's "Resolve a DOI" function, available on the site's home page.
APA 7also advises writers to include a DOI (if available), even when using the print source.
Article from an Online Periodical with DOI Assigned
Lastname, F. M., & Lastname, F. M. (Year). Title of article. Title of Periodical, Vol.(Issue), page numbers. DOI
Drollinger, T., Comer, L. B., & Warrington, P. T. (2006). Development and validation of the active empathetic listening scale. Psychology & Marketing, 23(2), 161-180. https://doi.org/10.1002/mar.20105
Article from an Online Periodical with no DOI Assigned
If an online scholarly journal article has no DOI and is published on a website, include the URL. If an online scholarly article has no DOI and is published on a database, do not include a URL or any database information. The only exception is for databases that publish articles that are in limited circulation (like ERIC) or that are only available on that particular database (like UpToDate). Note that retrieval dates are required for unarchived sources that are likely, or intended, to change over time.
Perreault, L. (2019). Obesity in adults: Role of physical activity and exercise. UpToDate. Retrieved January 12, 2020, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/obesity-in-adults-role-of-physical-activity-and-exercise
APA 7th edition does not provide guidance on how to cite abstracts. However, if you only use information from the abstract but the full text of the article is also available, we advise you to add "[Abstract]" after the article or source name. If the full text is not available, you may use an abstract that is available through an abstracts database as a secondary source.
Online News Article
Note:The format for this type of source depends on whether your source comes from a site with an associated newspaper.
If the sourcedoescome from a site with an associated newspaper, leave the title of the article unformatted, but italicize the title of the newspaper.
Lastname, F. M. (Year, Month Date). Title of article. Title of Publication. URL
Richards, C. (2019, December 9). Best music of 2019: Lana Del Rey sings lullabies about the end of America. Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/music/best-music-of-2019-lana-del-rey-sings-lullabies-about-the-end-of-america/2019/12/06/6e82c5ec-15d8-11ea-a659-7d69641c6ff7_story.html
On the other hand, if the sourcedoesn'tcome from a site with an associated newspaper, italicize the title of the article, but leave the name of the site unformatted.
Lastname, F. M. (Year, Month Date). Title of article. Name of publishing website. URL
Jones, J. (2020, May 10). Why flats dominate Spain's housing market. BBC. https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20200506-why-do-flats-dominate-spains-housing-market
Electronic or Kindle Books
It is not necessary to note that you have used an eBook or audiobook when the content is the same as a physical book. However, you should distinguish between the eBook or audiobook and the print version if the content is different or abridged, or if you would like to cite the narrator of an audiobook.
Lastname, F. M. (Year).Title of book. Publisher. URL
Lastname, F. M. (Year).Title of book [eBook edition]. Publisher. URL
Lastname, F. M. (Year). Title of book (N. Narrator, Narr.) [Audiobook]. Publisher. URL (if applicable)
Dissertation/Thesis from a Database
Lastname, F. M. (Year). Title of dissertation or thesis (Publication No.) [Doctoral dissertation or master’s thesis, Name of Institution Awarding Degree]. Database Name.
Duis, J. M. (2008). Acid/base chemistry and related organic chemistry conceptions of undergraduate organic chemistry students(Publication No. 3348786) [Doctoral dissertation, University of Northern Colorado]. ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global.
Entry in an Online Dictionary, Thesaurus, or Encyclopedia with a Group Author
Note:An online dictionary, thesaurus, or encyclopedia may be continuously updated and therefore not include a publication date (like in the example below). If that’s the case, use “n.d.” for the date and include the retrieval date in the citation.
Institution or organization name. (Year). Title of entry. In Title of reference work. URL
Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Braggadocio. In Merriam-Webster.com dictionary. Retrieved January 13, 2020, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/braggadocio
Entry in an Online Dictionary, Thesaurus, or Encyclopedia with an Individual Author
Lastname, F. M. (Year). Title of entry. In F. M. Lastname (ed.), Title of reference work (edition). Publisher. URL or DOI
Martin, M. (2018). Animals. In L. A. Schintler & C. L. McNeely (Eds), Encyclopedia of big data. SpringerLink. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-32001-4_7-1
Note: If the dictionary, thesaurus, or encyclopedia does not include an edition, simply skip that step.
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group (Year). Title of dataset (Version No.) [Data set]. Publisher. DOI or URL
Grantmakers in the Arts. (2019). Arts funding trends, United States, 1994-present (ICPSR 37337) [Data set]. National Archive of Data on Arts & Culture. https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/NADAC/studies/37337
Graphic Data (e.g. Interactive Maps, Infographics, and Other Graphic Representations of Data)
Give the name of the organization or individual followed by the date and the title. If there is no title, in brackets, you should provide a brief explanation of what type of data is there and in what form it appears. Include the URL and the retrieval date if there is no publication date.
HatchMed. (2017). 8 ways to improve patient satisfaction [Infographic]. HatchMed.com. https://www.hatchmed.com/blog/2017/1/30/8-ways-to-improve-patient-satisfaction
Google. (n.d.). [Google Map of Purdue University]. Retrieved January 12, 2020, from https://firstname.lastname@example.org,-86.9233886,17z
Qualitative Data and Online Interviews
If an interview is not retrievable in audio or print form, cite the interview only in the text (not in the reference list) and provide the month, day, and year in the text. If the interview transcript is published in an online periodical, like a magazine, cite the interview the same way you would cite the medium where it is published, as shown below:
Schulman, M. (2019, December 8). Peter Dinklage is still punk rock. The New Yorker. https://www.newyorker.com/culture/the-new-yorker-interview/peter-dinklage-is-still-punk-rock
If it is an audio file or transcript published in a database, credit the interviewee as the author and use the following model:
Paynter, W. (1970, September 17). Interview with Will Paynter [Interview]. Studs Terkel Radio Archive; The Chicago History Museum. https://studsterkel.wfmt.com/programs/interview-will-paynter
Online Lecture Notes and Presentation Slides
When citing online lecture notes, be sure to provide the file format in brackets after the lecture title (e.g. PowerPoint slides, Word document).
Lastname, F. M. (Year, Month Date). Title of presentation [Lecture notes, PowerPoint slides, etc]. Publisher. URL
Smith, C. (2017, October 13). AI and machine learning demystified [PowerPoint slides]. SlideShare. https://www.slideshare.net/carologic/ai-and-machine-learning-demystified-by-carol-smith-at-midwest-ux-2017
Computer Software/Downloaded Software
Do not cite standard office software (e.g. Word, Excel) or programming languages. Provide references only for specialized software.
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group. (Year). Title of software (Version No.). Publisher. URL
Maplesoft. (2019). Maple companion (Version 2.1.0). Cybernet Systems Co. https://www.maplesoft.com/products/MapleCompanion/
E-mails are not included in the list of references, though you should parenthetically cite them in your main text:
(E. Robbins, personal communication, January 4, 2001).
Online Forum or Discussion Posting
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group [username]. (Year, Month Date). Title of post [Online forum post]. Publisher. URL
Stine, R. L. [RL__Stine]. (2013, October 23). I’m R.L. Stine and it’s my job to terrify kids. Ask me anything! [Online forum post]. Reddit. https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1p32dl/
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group [@username]. (Year, Month Date). Content of the post up to the first 20 words[Tweet]. Site Name. URL
Note: If the tweet includes images, videos, or links to other sources, indicate that information in brackets after the content description. Also attempt to replicate emojis if possible.
National Geographic [@NatGeo]. (2020, January 12). Scientists knew African grays are clever, but now they’ve been documented assisting other members of their species—even strangers [Tweet; thumbnail link to article]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/NatGeo/status/1216346352063537154
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group [@username]. (n.d.). Tweets [Twitter profile]. Retrieved Month Date, Year, from URL
MLA Style [@mlastyle]. (n.d.). Tweets [Twitter profile]. Retrieved January 12, 2020, from https://twitter.com/mlastyle
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group. (Year, Month Date). Content of the post up to the first 20 words [Type of post]. Site Name. URL
Note: If the Facebook post includes images, videos, or links to other sources, indicate that information in brackets after the content description. Also attempt to replicate emojis if possible.
U.S. Department of the Interior. (2020, January 10). Like frosting on a cake, snow coats and clings to the hoodoos at Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah [Image attached] [Status update]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/USInterior/photos/a.155163054537384/2586475451406120/?type=3&theater
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group. (n.d.). Home [Facebook page]. Site name. Retrieved Month Date, Year, from URL
Little River Canyon National Preserve (n.d.). Home [Facebook page]. Facebook. Retrieved January 12, 2020 from https://www.facebook.com/lirinps/
Instagram Photo or Video
Lastname, F. M. or Name of Group [@username]. (Year, Month Date). Content of the post up to the first 20 words [Type of post]. Site Name. URL
BBC [@bbc]. (2020, January 12). Skywatchers have been treated to the first full moon of 2020-known as a “wolf moon”-at the same time as a [Photograph]. Instagram. https://www.instagram.com/p/B7OkWqbBwcf/
Lastname, F. M. (Year, Month Date). Title of post. Publisher. URL
Axelrod, A. (2019, August 11). A century later: The Treaty of Versailles and its rejection of racial equality. Code Switch, NPR. https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2019/08/11/742293305/a-century-later-the-treaty-of-versailles-and-its-rejection-of-racial-equality
YouTube or other Streaming Video
Last Name, F. M. [Username]. (Year, Month Date). Title of video [Video]. Streaming Service. URL
Lushi, K. [Korab Lushi]. (2016, July 3). Albatross culture 1 [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_AMrJRQDPjk&t=148s
Note: The person or group who uploaded the video is considered the author. If the author’s name is the same as the username, you can omit the [Username].
Author, A. A. (Year, Month Date). Title of talk [Video]. TED. URL
Al-Mutawa, N. (2010, July). Superheroes inspired by Islam [Video]. TED. https://www.ted.com/talks/naif_al_mutawa_superheroes_inspired_by_islam#t-4909
Or (if on YouTube)
Username. (Year, Month Date). Title of talk [Video]. YouTube. URL
Tedx Talks. (2011, Nov. 15). TEDxHampshireCollege - Jay Smooth - How I learned to stop worrying and love discussing race [Video]. YouTube.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MbdxeFcQtaU
Host, A. A. (Host). (Year, Month Date). Title of episode (No. if provided) [Audio podcast episode]. In Name of podcast. Publisher. URL
Prime, K. (Host). (2019, March 29). For whom the cowbell tolls [Audio podcast episode]. In Radiolab. WNYC Studios. https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/whom-cowbell-tolls
“Et al.” is used in APA in-text citations of sources with 3+ authors, e.g. (Smith et al., 2019). It is not used in APA reference entries. Use “et al.” for 3+ authors in MLA in-text citations and Works Cited entries.
- author name and initial, or group name, followed by social media identity information (provide the author's screen name in square brackets. If only the screen name is known, provide it without brackets.
- date. ...
- title. ...
- format. ...
- source url. ...
- retrieval date.
ACAP recommends the use of live, blue hyperlinks in reference lists. Remember to be consistent throughout the entire document. See also the APA Style and Grammar Guidelines for more information.
Make sure to use reputable, accurate sources.
Citation generators work with the sources you give them. They can't evaluate whether those sources are good or not. This means that it's possible to use a citation generator to assemble a bibliography that's technically flawless, but nevertheless useless.
“Et al.” is used in Harvard style to indicate that a source has four or more authors. By using “et al.”, writers can also avoid having very long citations that list every single author.
This is abbreviated to et al. (with a full stop at the end) and it is used in a citation when you have three authors or more. This makes your citation more manageable. When using the authors name in your writing you should include the full stop after et al.
To cite your electronic sources in text, use the APA guidelines for print sources. For direct quotation of a specific passage, cite author, date, page (Anakwe, Igbaria, & Anandarajan, 2010, p. 2) or According to Anakwe, Igbaria, and Anandarajan (2010), “Most management research is privately funded” (p. 2).
Author. (Publication date). Title of document. Publishing information or electronic retrieval information.
- publication or update date.
- article title.
- journal title.
- the type of medium (i.e. CD-ROM, online, etc.)
- volume and/or pages.
- a source statement (e.g. URL, electronic database vendor, email address, etc.)
- date you accessed the resource online.
For APA the reference list is arranged in alphabetical order of authors' surnames. Arrange by first author's name, then by second author if you have the same first author, etc. (check the page on Authors for how to lay out the reference if you have more than one author).
The APA Style blog recommends having active links (hyperlinks) if your document is electronic (Microsoft Word document, PowerPoint, etc.). If your document will be printed, the APA Style blog recommends removing the hyperlinks.
You should keep hyperlinks active. Consider your reader and the paper's final delivery method (print or digital) when deciding whether to format links as blue text with underline or as plain text.
Cons: Only offers MLA and APA. Doesn't offer the most current versions. Blocks access to versions that are being upgraded. Requires user to have some knowledge of punctuation for various field.
- Mendeley Cite.
- Cite This for Me.
- Citation Machine.
Yes, you can abbreviate the subsequent citations of the source. If the subsequent citation is in the footnote immediately following the full citation, you can use 'ibid'. Used alone, 'ibid' means 'in the very same place' – in other words, the same source and the same page or paragraph as the preceding full citation.
A Work by Three or More Authors
List only the first author's name followed by “et al.” in every citation, even the first, unless doing so would create ambiguity between different sources. In et al., et should not be followed by a period.
In the Works Cited (Per the MLA Handbook (9th edition), p. 221: To cite two or more works by the same author, give the name in the first entry only. Thereafter, in place of the name, type three hyphens, followed by a period and the title. The three hyphens stand for exactly the same name as in the preceding entry.
in an Email. Use it in an email greeting by saying, “Dear Mr. Smith et al.,” when there is more than one recipient. For punctuation, always follow the abbreviation with a period since it's short for “et alia” or “and others.”
APA in-text citations with multiple authors
If there are three or more authors, only include the first author's last name followed by “et al.”, meaning “and others”. Group authors known by their abbreviations (e.g., CDC) are written in full the first time and are abbreviated in subsequent citations.
When you have 3 or more authors, you only use the first author's surname in text, and abbreviate the rest of the list with "et al." (Latin for "and others"). In your reference list, you list all of the authors (up to 20).
More Tips for Referencing Electronic Sources
e-mail. e-journal. database. Internet.
A PDF, after all, is not really a source itself, but rather a file type and a way to display a source. For example, if the source you wish to cite is a PDF of a newspaper article, cite the source as you would a newspaper.
Cite web postings as you would a standard web entry. Provide the author of the work, the title of the posting in quotation marks, the web site name in italics, the publisher, and the posting date. Follow with the date of access. Include screen names as author names when author name is not known.
A reference list contains details of all sources cited in text. A reference list is arranged alphabetically by author. If an item has no author, it is cited by title, and included in the alphabetical list using the first significant word of the title. A reference list is generally placed at the end of a work.
The APA Style Guide to Electronic References says to "format references to technical and research reports and other gray literature as you would a book retrieved online." Thus, a reference to an annual report follows the usual who-when-what-where format. For example, American Psychological Association. ( 2013).
What is E-Reference? Electronic Reference materials are sources of information in the form of online encyclopedias, dictionaries, timelines, handbooks, and guides. These resources provide reliable and accurate quick facts, definitions, and background information on any topic.
Cite web pages in text as you would any other source, using the author and date if known. Keep in mind that the author may be an organization rather than a person. For sources with no author, use the title in place of an author. For sources with no date use n.d. (for no date) in place of the year: (Smith, n.d.).
"When an electronic source lacks page numbers, you should try to include information that will help readers find the passage being cited. Use the heading or section name, an abbreviated heading or section name, a paragraph number (para. 1), or a combination of these."
All references should be double spaced with a 0.5 in or 1.27 cm hanging indent (APA, 2020, p.
Reference list entries should be alphabetized by the last name of the first author of each work. For multiple articles by the same author, or authors listed in the same order, list the entries in chronological order, from earliest to most recent.
Yes, page numbers are included on all pages, including the title page, table of contents, and reference page. Page numbers should be right-aligned in the page header.
“A citation is any mention of your business out on the web, with or without a link.
Shades of blue provide the strongest signal for links, but other colors work almost as well. As always, when using color to signal information, you should provide redundant cues for color-blind users.
DOIs can be found in database records and the reference lists of published works. A URL specifies the location of digital information on the internet and can be found in the address bar of your internet browser.
You can also select all text (control + A), then do Ctrl + Shift + F9. That will unlink all references from their citations.
The URL, or Uniform Resource Locator is the hyperlink or web address of the work you are citing: The URL always comes at the end of the reference list entry. Use if there is no doi. Journal articles may provide a digital object identifier (doi) on the first page of the article or in the article details.
- Copy the URL you want to shorten.
- Open Bitly in your web browser.
- Paste the URL into the "Shorten your link" field and click Shorten. Just paste your URL in the field and you're ready to shorten it. Stefan Ionescu/Insider.
- Click Copy to grab the new URL.
APA in-text citations with multiple authors
If a work has two authors, separate their names with an ampersand (&) in a parenthetical citation or “and” in a narrative citation. If there are three or more authors, only include the first author's last name followed by “et al.”, meaning “and others”.
Generally, you need to use one to two references for the point you are trying to make. Roughly, for a 1500-word essay, this makes a minimum of 10 references. This, however, also depends on the topic or the subject you are covering in the essay.
Provide all the authors' last names when you first refer to a document with 3-5 authors. Only list the first author with the Latin abbreviation "et al." for any subsequent references. Example: Jones, Chavez, Jackson, and Chen (2010) duplicated...
|Article Size (Word Count)||Median Number of References|
A Work by Three or More Authors
List only the first author's name followed by “et al.” in every citation, even the first, unless doing so would create ambiguity between different sources. In et al., et should not be followed by a period. Only "al" should be followed by a period.
Number of Authors to Include in In-text Citations
For a work with one or two authors, include the author name(s) in every citation. For a work with three or more authors, include the name of only the first author plus "et al." in every citation, including the first citation, unless doing so would create ambiguity.
NOTE: The in-text citation for works with three or more authors is shortened to the first author's name followed by et al. and the year. References: Author Surname, First Initial.
Writing 3,000 words can take anywhere between six and 24 hours depending on the topic but, with our tips, you can easily get it done within a day. Get your head down and you could meet the deadline, and even produce an essay you are proud of.
3000 word essay: 20 sources (or more) listed in the reference list. 5000 word essay: 33 sources (or more) listed in the reference list.
If you're multi-referencing the same point, it'd look better than if you had 40 single-references in my opinion, as this would require being very brief for only 3000 words. But essentially, 40 is not too many, it just really depends how you've structured your essay/used your references.
In subsequent citations, only use the first author's last name followed by "et al." in the signal phrase or in parentheses. In et al., et should not be followed by a period. Six or More Authors: Use the first author's name followed by et al. in the signal phrase or in parentheses.
For the in-text citation for a book with eight or more authors, include the first author and then 'et al. '. Include the first six authors' names, then insert three ellipsis points and add the last author name in the Reference List.
List by last names and initials; commas separate author names. After the first 19 authors' names, use an ellipsis in place of the remaining author names. Then, end with the final author's name (do not place an ampersand before it). There should be no more than twenty names in the citation in total.
How many references do you need? Typically you should have at least three references who you're comfortable offering up. If you're early in your career and have only had one or two jobs, employers will generally understand if you only have one or two references from managers.
Given that all the references are likely to come in the body of your essay, and that takes about 75% of the word count, then you're probably looking at one peer-reviewed reference for roughly every 200 words, based on a 2500 word essay.
D. Bachelors: A Bachelors level dissertation contains words from 10,000 to 12,000. For this type of word count, 45 to 50 references will most likely be needed at least and the maximum, 100 reference will also be a respectable benchmark to add references.