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APA Citation Style Guide: 7th edition – Citing in APA Format

Introduction:

Style guides dictate the information necessary for referencing sources and formatting citations. Adhering to the appropriate style guide is necessary to maintain consistency, clarity, and accuracy in the information provided. Various academic disciplines adhere to distinct style guides, each with its specific conventions for citing books, articles, websites, and other sources.

“What is APA Format?

The American Psychological Association (APA) Citation Style Guide is predominantly used by researchers and professionals in the field of social and physiological sciences.

The APA Citation 7th edition offers updated guidelines for citing sources and formatting manuscripts. Notably, the 7th edition introduces changes such as inclusive language recommendations and revised guidelines for digital object identifiers (DOIs) and URLs.

In this blog, we will discuss about the APA citation format and how to cite in the APA style.

APA in-text citations

In APA citation style, in-text citations are used to acknowledge and provide brief references to sources cited within the text of a document. The general format is (Author Last Name, Year). Here are some examples:

No. of Authors Example
One Author Higgins, 2018
Two Authors Jacob & Brown, 2020
Three or More Authors Miller et al., 2019
No Author Title of the Book, 2021
Specific Parts of a Source (Page Numbers, Paragraph Numbers, etc. Andrews, 2016, p. 45 Johnson, 2019, para. 3

Types of APA In-text Citations

In APA style, in-text citations are of two types: parenthetical and narrative.

  • Parenthetical Citations:

In parenthetical citations, both the author’s name and the publication date appear within parentheses at the end of the sentence or within the sentence itself.

Example: “The results were consistent with previous findings (Jackson, 2012).”

  • Narrative Citations:

In narrative citations, the author’s name is integrated into the sentence itself, usually followed by the publication date in parentheses.

Example: “Jackson (2018) conducted a study on the effects of chemotherapy on quality of life.”

Each in-text citation must correspond to a full reference in the reference list at the end of the document.

APA Formatting

APA Title Page Format

In APA citation style, a title page is mandatory for all papers. There are distinct versions of the title page tailored for students and professionals.

A typical title page in APA format would include the title of the paper that is centered and in title case, followed by the author’s name(s) and institutional affiliation(s) centered below. Page numbers are inserted in the top right corner. The title page should be formatted in Times New Roman 12-point font and double-spaced.

Components of a Student Title Page:

  • Paper title
  • Author name
  • Department and university name
  • Course number and name
  • Instructor name
  • Due date of the assignment

All of this information should be double-spaced and centered on the page.

Components of a Professional Title Page:

  • Paper title
  • Author name
  • Affiliation
  • Author note (flushed left)

The professional title page excludes the course name, instructor name, and due date, but includes an author note aligned to the left with all text aligned to the center.

APA reference page format: 

In APA format, the reference page is where you list all the sources cited in your paper. Here is how to format the reference page in APA 7th Edition:

  • Reference Title: The word “References” must be centered at the top of the page. It should be in bold, with no underline or italics.
  • Alphabetical Order: The references should be in alphabetical order by the author’s last name. If there is no author, use the title of the work.
  • Double-Spacing: Double-space all text on the reference page.
  • Hanging Indent: Apply a hanging indent of 0.5 inches to each reference. This means that the first line of each reference is flush left, and subsequent lines are indented by 0.5 inches.

Reference formats are based on the document type (e.g., journal article, report, etc). Therefore, first determine the document type and then choose the appropriate format to use for a reference list entry.

APA Style Citation Example

Below are examples of APA style citation for books and Journal articles:

Books:

Author Last Name, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of the book. Publisher.

Example:

Miller, S. A., & Saade, J. (2021). Introduction to Molecular Biology. Academic Press.

Journal Article:

Author Last Name, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of the article. Title of the Journal, Volume number (Issue number), pages. DOI or URL.

Example:

James, P., & Jackson, W. L. (2011). The effects of mindfulness on chronic pain management. Journal of Medical Research, 15(2), 45-57. DOI:10.1234/5678


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