Whenever you write a paper, you draw from existing sources of information. It is important to acknowledge those sources when you write your own paper. But how exactly do you write an acknowledgement of a source you incorporated into your paper? What does a source citation look like?
The following guide can help you write citations in the American Psyschological Association (APA) style. (And yes, the APA style is used by many different disciplines, not just psychology).
Citations consist of two elements:
- A quick note in the text of your paper anytime you use an existing source of information. The "in-text citations" tab above shows you how to include a note in the text of your paper when you use a source.
- A complete list of the sources you used at the end of your paper. The tabs above will show you how to present a webpage, article, book, encyclopedia, or DVD in the list of references at the end of your paper. General guidelines on how you present a your list of references include:
- Reference list starts on a new page. Type the word "References" centered at the top of the page.
- Double-space all reference list entries
- The first line of each reference is set at the left margin and subsequent lines are indented ½ inch
- Arrange alphabetically, not by format (book, journal, etc)
Please see the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association for further info. The library has one copy of the Manual in the Ready Reference section on the second floor of the library, and one held on 24 hour reserve.
American Psychological Association (APA) style is commonly used for citing references in student papers in science, medical, public health, health sciences and nursing as well as the social science.
The purpose of documentation is to:
- Identify (cite) other people’s ideas and information used within your essay or term paper.
- Indicate the authors or sources of these in a References list at the end of your paper.
This guide is based on the APA Manual (6th ed.) that was published in 2009.
The following sections provide you with information and examples that will help you to cite the sources that you come across during your research.
General Style Guidelines
For more examples and information, consult the following publications:
APA Manual (6th ed.)
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