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Citation Guide: APA General Guidelines

A guide for navigating various citation styles in order to create citations for resources cited in research papers.

APA General Guidelines

General Guidelines

In Text Citations:

  • Follow the author-date method (author, date)

    • Referencing the general work (Jones, 1998)

    • Referencing a specific section or sentence in the work (Jones, 1998, pp. 199-201)

  • Always capitalize proper nouns and names

  • If you refer to the title of a source within your paper, capitalize all words that are four letters long or greater within the title of a source (Example: Permanence and Change)

  • Name the author(s) in a single phrase introducing the use of the source, or in the parentheses containing the citation’ author, page, and page number (if referring to a specific section or directly quoting information)

  • Use the phrase “et al.” when using a source with three or more authors 

Reference List:

  • Reference lists are located at the end of the paper on a separate page

  • Reference lists are titled: References (References should be centered on the page)

  • Reference entries should be listed alphabetically, double spaced, and each entry will be indented after the first line .5 inch from the left margin

  • Generally, each reference list entry should include four essential elements: author, date, title, and source

  • Reference formats are based on the document type (journal article, book, etc.)

  • Most references do not require retrieval dates. Instead, include a DOI or URL at the end of the entry. DOI is preferred.