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APA Citation Style, 7th Edition: In-Text Citations & Paraphrasing

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When do I use in-text citations?

When should you add in-text citations in your paper .

There are several rules of thumb you can follow to make sure that you are citing your paper correctly in APA 7 format. 

  • Think of your paper broken up into paragraphs. When you start a paragraph, the first time you add a sentence that has been paraphrased from a reference -> that's when you need to add an in-text citation. 
  • Continue writing your paragraph, you do NOT need to add another in-text citation until: 1) You are paraphrasing from a NEW source, which means you need to cite NEW information OR 2) You need to cite a DIRECT quote, which includes a page number, paragraph number or Section title. 
  • Important to remember : You DO NOT need to add an in-text citation after EVERY sentence of your paragraph. 

Paragraph Rules of Thumb: Cite after 1st paraphrase, continue writing, add a new cite for a new source or a direct quote.

What do in-text citations look like?

In-text citation styles: .

(Forbes, 2020) Forbes (2020) stated... 
(Bennet & Miller, 2019) Bennet and Miller (2019) concluded that... 
(Jones et al., 2020)  Jones et al. (2020) shared two different... 
(East Carolina University, 2020)  East Carolina University (2020) found... 

Let's look at these examples if they were written in text: 

An example with 1 author:

Parenthetical citation:  Following American Psychological Association (APA) style guidelines will help you to cultivate your own unique academic voice as an expert in your field (Forbes, 2020). 

Narrative citation : Forbes (2020) shared that by following American Psychological Association (APA) guidelines, students would learn to find their own voice as experts in the field of nursing. 

An example with 2 authors: 

Parenthetical citation: Research on the use of progressive muscle relaxation for stress reduction has demonstrated the efficacy of the method (Bennett & Miller, 2019). 

Narrative citation: As shared by Bennett and Miller (2019), research on the use of progressive muscle relaxation for stress reduction has demonstrated the efficacy of the method. 

An example with 3 authors: 

Parenthetical citation: Guided imagery has also been shown to reduce stress, length of hospital stay, and symptoms related to medical and psychological conditions (Jones et al., 2020).

Narrative citation: Jones et al. (2020) shared that guided imagery has also been shown to reduce stress, length of hospital stay, and symptoms related to medical and psychological conditions. 

An example with a group/corporate author: 

Parenthetical citation: Dr. Philip G. Rogers, senior vice president at the American Council on Education, was recently elected as the newest chancellor of the university (East Carolina University, 2020). 

Narrative citation: Recently shared on the East Carolina University (2020) website, Dr. Philip G. Rogers, senior vice president at the American Council on Education, was elected as the newest chancellor. 

Tips on Paraphrasing

Paraphrasing is recreating someone else's ideas into your own words & thoughts, without changing the original meaning (gahan, 2020).  .

Here are some best practices when you are paraphrasing: 

  • How do I learn to paraphrase? IF you are thoroughly reading and researching articles or book chapters for a paper, you will start to take notes in your own words . Those notes are the beginning of paraphrased information.
  • Read the original information, PUT IT AWAY, then rewrite the ideas in your own words . This is hard to do at first, it takes practice, but this is how you start to paraphrase. 
  • It's usually better to paraphrase, than to use too many direct quotes. 
  • When you start to paraphrase, cite your source. 
  • Make sure not to use language that is TOO close to the original, so that you are not committing plagiarism. 
  • Use theasaurus.com to help you come up with like/similar phrases if you are struggling. 
  • Paraphrasing (vs. using direct quotes) is important because it shows that YOU ACTUALLY UNDERSTAND the information you are reading. 
  • Paraphrasing ALLOWS YOUR VOICE to be prevalent in your writing. 
  • The best time to use direct quotes is when you need to give an exact definition, provide specific evidence, or if you need to use the original writer's terminology. 
  • BEST PRACTICE PER PARAGRAPH: On your 1st paraphrase of a source, CITE IT. There is no need to add another in-text citation until you use a different source, OR, until you use a direct quote. 

References : 

Gahan, C. (2020, October 15). How to paraphrase sources . Scribbr.com .   https://tinyurl.com/y7ssxc6g  

Citing Direct Quotes

When should i use a direct quote in my paper .

Direct quotes should only be used occasionally: 

  • When you need to share an exact definition 
  • When you want to provide specific evidence or information that cannot be paraphrased
  • When you want to use the original writer's terminology

From:  https://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/whaddyamean/ 

Definitions of direct quotes: 

, around the quote, are incorporated into the text of the paper. (Shayden, 2016, p. 202)
(by indenting 0.5" or 1 tab) beneath the text of the paragraph. (Miller et al., 2016, p. 136)

, therefore you need a different way to cite the information for a direct quote. There are two ways to do this: 

(Jones, 2014, para. 4)

(Scotts, 2019, Resources section)

  • Western Oregon University's APA Guidelines on Direct Quotes This is an excellent quick tutorial on how to format direct quotes in APA 7th edition. Bookmark this page for future reference!

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Home / Guides / Citation Guides / APA Format / Paraphrasing in APA

Paraphrasing in APA

Paraphrasing is the art of putting information into your own words while writing a research paper, in order to maintain the academic integrity of your project. This is important because you need to use solid evidence as a researcher, but you need to put information into the proper format to avoid plagiarism. The American Psychological Association (APA) created a writing style in 1929 that calls for uniformity and consistency in giving credit to sources in your research.

How to properly paraphrase

If you do not properly paraphrase your source material following the APA style, you are at the risk of losing credibility as a writer and possibly plagiarizing. Although paraphrasing is not difficult, it does take time and a little forethought to do it correctly. There are several steps you should follow in order to achieve success.

1. Read the original source

The first step in creating an effective paraphrase is to carefully read the original source. Read it the first time to get the overall understanding, and then do a second closer reading in order to gather details and material that will help you formulate your argument.

2. Take notes in your own words

After reading the original source and determining what details can help you formulate your argument, take a minute to jot down some notes. Be careful to put everything into your own words. Change the structure of the sentence as well as the vocabulary.

Also, take a moment to take notes on the context of the source. Why was it written? Who wrote it? When was it written?

3. Construct a paraphrase

In order to construct a paraphrase, you need to include the same information, but with different sentence structure and different vocabulary. APA rules say that a paraphrase should be approximately the same length as the original.

You also need to add contextual text around the paraphrase so it fits within your paper.

4. Double check the original source to avoid duplication

Although an extra step, it is always a good idea to read through the original source one more time to make sure that you have chosen different words and varied the sentence structure. This is a good time to add the APA requirements of author and year of the source so that you have it handy.

5. Include an APA in-text citation

Even though you are putting a paraphrase into your own words, APA requires an in-text citation for paraphrasing. You can create a parenthetical citation or a narrative citation to accomplish this.

Remember: All in-text citations will also need a corresponding APA reference in the APA reference page . For this article, we’re just focusing on in-text citations in paraphrases.

For both types of in-text citation, you will need the following source information:

  • Author’s last name
  • Year published
  • single page: p. #
  • page range: pp. #-#

Parenthetical citation

For an APA parenthetical citation , write your paraphrase and then add the author and year in parenthesis at the end. Use a comma between the author and the year inside the parenthesis, and put the period for the end of the sentence outside the parenthesis.

Oh, say can you see by the dawn’s early light What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming? (Key, 1814).

My parents traveled from Italy to Germany and then France. As the oldest child, I traveled with them after being born in Naples. They were very close, and shared that love they had for each other with me (Shelley, 1818, p. 78).

Narrative citation

In a narrative citation, you introduce the author’s name as part of the sentence, and put the year in parenthesis.

Francis Scott Key (1814) wrote very special words while overlooking a battle: Oh, say can you see by the dawn’s early light, what so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?

For further details, visit this guide on APA in-text citations.

Paraphrasing example

Franklin Delano Roosevelt gave an inaugural address in January 1933 during the Great Depression. This is an excerpt taken from an online source :

This is preeminently the time to speak the truth, the whole truth, frankly and boldly. Nor need we shrink from honestly facing conditions in our country today. This great Nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper….

1. Read original source text

In order to paraphrase, read through the text once to get the gist of it, and then again for deeper understanding. The context of this passage is also significant. It was given by a U.S. president during the Great Depression. What do you think he was trying to achieve?

Next take notes in your own words. Without immediately looking at the text, jot down what you think is the main point or concept of it. Next, take notes on the context of the source (you can look at the source for this).

For this passage, a few example notes could be:

  • Facing truth
  • Harsh current reality
  • Believing that this great nation will endure and eventually prosper again
  • Speech by President Roosevelt in 1933
  • Given during the Great Depression
  • He was addressing his citizens

Now’s the time to construct the paraphrase. Based on the notes above, a paraphrase would look something like this:

With his inaugural speech, Roosevelt was carefully trying to prepare citizens of the Nation to face the harsh reality that the Great Depression had caused, while also reassuring them that the country would endure and eventually prosper again.

4. Double check with the original source

The paraphrase above doesn’t not look too similar to the original, but we could still change a few words that were also in the original phrase (like “Nation,” “endure,” and “prosper). Revised, it looks like this:

With his inaugural speech, Roosevelt was carefully trying to prepare citizens of the United States to face the harsh reality that the Great Depression had caused, while also reassuring them that the country would eventually bounce back .

5. Add an APA in-text citation

An APA in-text citation means including the source’s author, year published, and page numbers (if available). The paraphrase already has the author’s name, but the year published needs to be added in parentheses. This is from an online source so no page number is needed.

With his inaugural speech, Roosevelt (1933) was carefully trying to prepare citizens of the United States to face the harsh reality that the Great Depression had caused, while also reassuring them that the country would eventually bounce back.

Examples of poor paraphrasing

Most people who fail at paraphrasing use the same sentence as the original source, and just change a word or two. If this is the case, the paraphrase would look something like this:

This great country will endure as it has endured, will come back to life and will prosper. So, first of all, let me show my strong belief that the only thing we have to worry about is fear itself…”

Another problem with paraphrasing occurs when you do half the job. Although the first and third sentences change the sentence structure and vocabulary in the sample below, there are some sections that are taken word-for-word from the original.

“From Italy they visited Germany and France. I, their eldest child, was born at Naples, and as an infant accompanied them in their rambles. I remained for several years their only child. Much as they were attached to each other, they seemed to draw inexhaustible stores of affection from a very mine of love to bestow them upon me.

Paraphrase:

My parents visited Italy and then Germany and France. I, their eldest child, was born at Naples. I traveled with them and was their only child for a few years. They loved each other and they seemed to draw inexhaustible stores of affection from a very mine of love.

In addition to the word-for-word similarities, this paraphrase doesn’t mention the original source’s author, year published, or page number (Shelley, 1818, p. 78).

Key takeaways

  • In order to avoid plagiarism, APA delineates the way to give credit to sources when you are paraphrasing.
  • In APA style, parenthetical citations demand the author and year of source.
  • In order to create a stellar paraphrase, you need to change the structure and the words, but keep the main idea intact.

Published October 28, 2020.

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APA Citation Guide (7th edition): Quotes vs Paraphrases

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What's the Difference?

Quoting vs paraphrasing: what's the difference.

There are two ways to integrate sources into your assignment: quoting directly or paraphrasing.

Quoting  is copying a selection from someone else's work, phrasing it exactly as it was originally written. When quoting place quotation marks (" ") around the selected passage to show where the quote begins and where it ends. Make sure to include an in-text citation. 

Paraphrasing  is used to show that you understand what the author wrote. You must reword the passage, expressing the ideas in your own words, and not just change a few words here and there. Make sure to also include an in-text citation. 

Quoting Example

There are two basic formats that can be used:

Parenthetical Style:

Narrative Style:

Quoting Tips

  • Long Quotes
  • Changing Quotes

What Is a Long Quotation?

A quotation of more than 40 words. 

Rules for Long Quotations

There are 4 rules that apply to long quotations that are different from regular quotations:

  • The line before your long quotation, when you're introducing the quote, usually ends with a colon.
  • The long quotation is indented half an inch from the rest of the text, so it looks like a block of text.
  • There are no quotation marks around the quotation.
  • The period at the end of the quotation comes before your in-text citation as opposed to after, as it does with regular quotations.

Example of a Long Quotation

At the end of Lord of the Flies the boys are struck with the realization of their behaviour:

The tears began to flow and sobs shook him. He gave himself up to them now for the first time on the island; great, shuddering spasms of grief that seemed to wrench his whole body. His voice rose under the black smoke before the burning wreckage of the island; and infected by that emotion, the other little boys began to shake and sob too. (Golding, 1960, p.186)

Changing Quotations

Sometimes you may want to make some modifications to the quote to fit your writing. Here are some APA rules when changing quotes:

Incorrect spelling, grammar, and punctuation

Add the word [sic] after the error in the quotation to let your reader know the error was in the original source and is not your error.

Omitting parts of a quotation

If you would like to exclude some words from a quotation, replace the words you are not including with an ellipsis - ...

Adding words to a quote

If you are adding words that are not part of the original quote, enclose the additional words in square brackets - [XYZ]

Secondary Source Quotes

What is a secondary source.

In scholarly work, a primary source reports original content; a secondary source refers to content first reported in another source.

  • Cite secondary sources sparingly—for instance, when the original work is out of print, unavailable, or available only in a language that you do not understand.
  • If possible, as a matter of good scholarly practice, find the primary source, read it, and cite it directly rather than citing a secondary source.

Rules for Secondary Source Citations

  • In the reference list, provide an entry only for the secondary source that you used.
  • In the text, identify the primary source and write “as cited in” the secondary source that you used. 
  • If the year of publication of the primary source is known, also include it in the in-text citation.

Example of a Secondary Source Use

Quote & In-Text Citation

Reference List Entry

Paraphrases

Paraphrasing example.

When you write information from a source in your own words, cite the source by adding an in-text citation at the end of the paraphrased portion as follows:

If you refer to the author's name in a sentence you do not have to include the name again as part of your in-text citation, instead include the year of publication following his/her name:

NOTE : Although not required, APA encourages including the page number when paraphrasing if it will help the reader locate the information in a long text and distinguish between the information that is coming from you and the source.

Paraphrasing Tips

  • Long Paraphrases

Original Source

Homeless individuals commonly come from families who are riddled with problems and marital disharmony, and are alienated from their parents. They have often been physically and even sexually abused, have relocated frequently, and many of them may be asked to leave home or are actually thrown out, or alternatively are placed in group homes or in foster care. They often have no one to care for them and no one knows them intimately.

Source from: 

Rokach, A. (2005). The causes of loneliness in homeless youth. The Journal of Psychology, 139, 469-480. 

Example: Incorrect Paraphrasing

Example: correct paraphrasing.

If your paraphrase is longer than one sentence, provide an in-text citation for the source at the beginning of the paraphrase. As long as it's clear that the paraphrase continues to the following sentences, you don't have to include in-text citations for the following sentences.

If your paraphrase continues to another paragraph and/or you include paraphrases from other sources within the paragraph, repeat the in-text citations for each.

Additional Resource

  • Paraphrasing (The Learning Portal)

Tip sheet on paraphrasing information

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Citations - APA: In-Text Citations - Quoting & Paraphrasing

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  • About IN-Text Citations

Long Quotations

Paraphrasing.

No Page Numbers

No Author and/or No Date

In-text citation for two or more authors/editors, citing a source that you found in another source (secondary source), about in-text citations.

In APA, in-text citations are inserted in the body of your research paper to briefly document the source of your information. Brief in-text citations point the reader to the full citation on the References list at the end of the paper.

Create in-text citations for the following:

  • Direct quotes

When you quote from online sources that do not provide page numbers (like Webpages), you can cite:

  • A paragraph number (if this is not provided, you can count the paragraph number from the start of your source). Bowlby described "three phases of the separation response: protest, despair, and detachment" (Garelli, 2001, para. 3).
  • A heading and paragraph number. Example: Bowlby described "three phases of the separation response: protest, despair, and detachment" (Garelli, 2001, Bowlby's Initial Stance section, para. 3).

No Known Author:

Where you'd normally put the author's last name, instead use the first one, two, or three words from the title. Don't count initial articles like "A", "An" or "The". You should provide enough words to make it clear which work you're referring to from your References List.

If the title in the References list is in italics, italicize the words from the title in the in-text citation.

If you are citing an article, a chapter of a book or a page from a website, put the words in double quotation marks.

( Cell Biology , 2012)

("Nursing," 2011)

No Known Date of Publication :

Where you'd normally put the year of publication, instead use the letters "n.d.".

(Smith, n.d.)

When quoting directly from a source, enclose the words in quotation marks then add the necessary information in parenthesis. There are two basic formats which can be used .

Option 1 - APA standard

The homeless were typically neglected growing up since they "commonly come from families who are riddled with problems and marital disharmony" (Rokach, 2005, p. 477).

Option 2 - used when the author's name for the work being cited  is written in the lead in sentence before the quote.

As Rokach (2005) notes, the homeless "often have no one to care for them and no one knows them intimately" (p. 477).

What Is a Long Quotation?

If your quotation extends to more than forty words as you're typing your essay, it is a long quotation. This can also be referred to as a block quotation.

Rules for Long Quotations

There are 4 rules that apply to long quotations that are different from regular quotations:

  • The line before your long quotation, when you're introducing the quote, usually ends with a colon.
  • The long quotation is indented half an inch from the rest of the text, so it looks like a block of text.
  • There are no quotation marks around the quotation.
  • The period at the end of the quotation comes  before  your in-text citation as opposed to  after , as it does with regular quotations.

Example of a Long Quotation

At the end of Lord of the Flies the boys are struck with the realization of their behaviour:

The tears began to flow and sobs shook him. He gave himself up to them now for the first time on the island; great, shuddering spasms of grief that seemed to wrench his whole body. His voice rose under the black smoke before the burning wreckage of the island; and infected by that emotion, the other little boys began to shake and sob too. (Golding, 1960, p.186)

When you write information from a source in your own words then cite the source by adding an in-text citation at the end of the paraphrased portion as follows:

Mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research following the publication of John Bowlby's studies (Hunt, 1993).  

If you refer to the author's name in a sentence you do not have to include the name again as part of your in-text citation, instead include the year of publication following his/her name:

Hunt (1993) noted that mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research after the publication of John Bowlby's studies.

Original Source

Homeless individuals commonly come from families who are riddled with problems and marital disharmony, and are alienated from their parents. They have often been physically and even sexually abused, have relocated frequently, and many of them may be asked to leave home or are actually thrown out, or alternatively are placed in group homes or in foster care. They often have no one to care for them and no one knows them intimately.

Example:  Incorrect  Paraphrasing

The homeless come from families with problems. Frequently, they have been physically or sexually abused, or have lived in group homes. Usually no one cares for them or knows them intimately (Rokach, 2005). 

Note : In this incorrect example the writing is too similar to the original source. The student only changed or removed a few words and has not phrased the ideas in a new way. 

Example:  Correct  Paraphrasing

Many homeless experience isolation in part due to suffering from abuse or neglect during their childhood (Rokach, 2005).

Note : The example keeps the idea of the original writing but phrases it in a new way.

Full Citation:

Rokach, A. (2005). The causes of loneliness in homeless youth.  The Journal of Psychology , 139, 469-480. 10.3200/JRLP.139.5.469-480

Number of Authors/Editors First Time Paraphrased Second and Subsequent Times Paraphrased First Time Quoting Second and Subsequent Times Quoting
Two

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57) (Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57)
Three or More

(Case et al., 2011)

(Case et al., 2011) (Case et al., 2011, p. 57)

(Case et al., 2011, p. 57)

In scholarly work, a primary source reports original content; a secondary source refers to content first reported in another source.

  • Cite secondary sources sparingly—for instance, when the original work is out of print, unavailable, or available only in a language that you do not understand.
  • If possible, as a matter of good scholarly practice, find the primary source, read it, and cite it directly rather than citing a secondary source. For example, rather than citing an instructor’s lecture or a textbook or encyclopedia that in turn cites original research, find, read, and cite the original research directly (unless an instructor has directed you to do otherwise).

Follow these directions when citing a secondary source:

  • In the reference list, provide an entry for the secondary source that you used.
  • In the in-text, identify the primary source and write “as cited in” the secondary source that you used.

If the year of publication of the primary source is known, also include it in the text citation.

For example, if you read a work by Lyon et al. (2014) in which Rabbitt (1982) was cited, and you were unable to read Rabbitt’s work yourself, cite Rabbitt’s work as the original source, followed by Lyon et al.’s work as the secondary source. Only Lyon et al.’s work appears in the reference list.

(Rabbitt, 1982, as cited in Lyon et al., 2014)

If the year of the primary source is unknown, omit it from the in-text citation.

Allport’s diary (as cited in Nicholson, 2003)

https://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/citations/secondary-sources

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Citations for Paraphrased Sources

If you paraphrase a source you need to include an in-text citation for that source using either the narrative or parenthetical citation formats. Unsure how to paraphrase? Check out the video below from Academic Support.

Page Numbers

Page numbers are not required, but you can include them.

Page Number Format
Number of Pages Format Narrative Citation Example Parenthetical Citation Example
Single page number p. 43 Thompson (2014) believes that..... (p. 23). (Thompson, 2014, p. 25)
Page range pp. 29-32 Thompson (2014) believes that..... (pp. 11-17). (Thompson, 2014, pp. 19-21)
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APA Citation Guide (7th Edition): Paraphrasing

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Paraphrasing

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When you write information from a source in your own words, cite the source by adding an in-text citation at the end of the paraphrased portion as follows:

Mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research following the publication of John Bowlby's studies (Hunt, 1993).

Note : If you refer to the author's name in a sentence you do not have to include the name again as part of your in-text citation, instead include the year of publication following his/her name:

Hunt (1993) noted that mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research after the publication of John Bowlby's studies.

Paraphrasing Examples

Original Source

Homeless individuals commonly come from families who are riddled with problems and marital disharmony, and are alienated from their parents. They have often been physically and even sexually abused, have relocated frequently, and many of them may be asked to leave home or are actually thrown out, or alternatively are placed in group homes or in foster care. They often have no one to care for them and no one knows them intimately.

Source from: 

Rokach, A. (2005). The causes of loneliness in homeless youth. The Journal of Psychology , 139, 469-480. Retrieved from Academic Search Premier database.

Example: Incorrect Paraphrasing

The homeless come from families with problems. Frequently, they have been physically or sexually abused, or have lived in group homes. Usually no one cares for them or knows them intimately (Rokach, 2005). 

Note : In this incorrect example the writing is too similar to the original source. The student only changed or removed a few words and has not phrased the ideas in a new way. 

Example: Correct Paraphrasing

Many homeless experience isolation in part due to suffering from abuse or neglect during their childhood (Rokach, 2005).

Note : The example keeps the idea of the original writing but phrases it in a new way.

More Than One Author or Editor

Two Authors or Editors

Provide each author's last name and the year of publication each time you cite the work in-text.

Three to Five Authors or Editors

The first time you cite the work in-text, provide each author's last name and the year of publication. Every other time you cite the same work in-text, provide only the first author's last name followed by "et al." and the year of publication.

Six or More Authors or Editors

Provide the first author's last name followed by "et al." and the year of publication every time you cite the work in-text.

In-Text Citation For Two or More Authors/Editors

Number of Authors/Editors First Time Paraphrased Second and Subsequent Times Paraphrased First Time Quoting Second and Subsequent Times Quoting
Two

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57) (Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57)
Three to Five (Case, Daristotle, Hayek, Smith, & Raash, 2011) (Case et al., 2011) (Case, Daristotle, Hayekm, Smith, & Raash, 2011, p. 57) (Case et al., 2011, p. 57)
Six or More

(Case et al., 2011)

(Case et al., 2011) (Case et al., 2011, p. 57) (Case et al., 2011, p. 57)

No Author and/or No Date

No Known Author:

Where you'd normally put the author's last name, instead use the first one, two, or three words from the title. Don't count initial articles like "A", "An" or "The". You should provide enough words to make it clear which work you're referring to from your References List.

If the title in the References list is in italics, italicize the words from the title in the in-text citation.

If you are citing an article, a chapter of a book or a page from a website, put the words in double quotation marks.

( Cell Biology , 2012)

("Nursing," 2011)

No Known Date of Publication :

Where you'd normally put the year of publication, instead use the letters "n.d.".

(Smith, n.d.)

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APA Citation Style, 7th edition: In-Text Citations, Paraphrasing and Quoting

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  • In-Text Citations, Paraphrasing and Quoting

When do I use in-text citations?

When should you add in-text citations in your paper , there are several rules of thumb you can follow to make sure that you are citing your paper correctly in apa 7 format. .

  • Think of your paper broken up into paragraphs. When you start a paragraph, the first time you add a sentence that has been paraphrased from a reference -> that's when you need to add an in-text citation. 
  • Continue writing your paragraph, you DO NOT need to add another in-text citation until:
  • You are paraphrasing from a NEW source, which means you need to cite NEW information OR
  • You need to cite a DIRECT quote, which includes a page number, paragraph number or Section title. 
  • Important to remember : You DO NOT need to add an in-text citation after EVERY sentence of your paragraph. 

Paragraph Rules of Thumb: Cite after 1st paraphrase, continue writing, add a new cite for a new source or a direct quote.

Paraphrasing

Paraphrasing is recreating someone else's ideas into your own words & thoughts, without changing the original meaning (gahan, 2020). .

Here are some best practices when you are paraphrasing: 

  • How do I learn to paraphrase?  IF you are thoroughly reading and researching articles or book chapters for a paper, you will start to take  notes in your own words . Those notes are the beginning of paraphrased information.
  • Read the original information, PUT IT AWAY, then rewrite the ideas in your own words . This is hard to do at first, it takes practice, but this is how you start to paraphrase. 
  • It's usually better to paraphrase, than to use too many direct quotes. 
  • When you start to paraphrase, cite your source. 
  • Make sure not to use language that is TOO close to the original, so that you are not committing plagiarism. 
  • Use  theasaurus.com  to help you come up with like/similar phrases if you are struggling. 
  • Paraphrasing (vs. using direct quotes) is important because it shows that YOU ACTUALLY UNDERSTAND the information you are reading. 
  • Paraphrasing ALLOWS YOUR VOICE to be prevalent in your writing. 
  • The best time to use direct quotes is when you need to give an exact definition, provide specific evidence, or if you need to use the original writer's terminology. 
  • BEST PRACTICE PER PARAGRAPH:  On your 1st paraphrase of a source, CITE IT. There is no need to add another in-text citation until you use a different source, OR, until you use a direct quote. 

What do in-text citations look like?

In-text citation styles: .

This table demonstrates how to create an in-text citation depending on how many authors are in your reference: 

(Forbes, 2020)

Forbes (2020) stated... 

(Bennet & Miller, 2019)

Bennet and Miller (2019) concluded that... 

(Jones et al., 2020) 

Jones et al. (2020) shared two different... 

(East Carolina University, 2020) 

East Carolina University (2020) found... 

Let's look at these examples if they were written in text: 

An example with 1 author:

Parenthetical citation:  Following American Psychological Association (APA) style guidelines will help you to cultivate your own unique academic voice as an expert in your field (Forbes, 2020). 

Narrative citation : Forbes (2020) shared that by following American Psychological Association (APA) guidelines, students would learn to find their own voice as experts in the field of nursing. 

An example with 2 authors: 

Parenthetical citation:  Research on the use of progressive muscle relaxation for stress reduction has demonstrated the efficacy of the method (Bennett & Miller, 2019). 

Narrative citation:  As shared by Bennett and Miller (2019), research on the use of progressive muscle relaxation for stress reduction has demonstrated the efficacy of the method. 

An example with 3 authors: 

Parenthetical citation:  Guided imagery has also been shown to reduce stress, length of hospital stay, and symptoms related to medical and psychological conditions (Jones et al., 2020).

Narrative citation:  Jones et al. (2020) shared that guided imagery has also been shown to reduce stress, length of hospital stay, and symptoms related to medical and psychological conditions. 

An example with a group/corporate author: 

Parenthetical citation:  Dr. Philip G. Rogers, senior vice president at the American Council on Education, was recently elected as the newest chancellor of the university (East Carolina University, 2020). 

Narrative citation:  Recently shared on the East Carolina University (2020) website, Dr. Philip G. Rogers, senior vice president at the American Council on Education, was elected as the newest chancellor. 

In-Text Citation For Two or More Authors/Editors

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57)

(Case, Daristotle, Hayek, Smith, & Raash, 2011)

(Case et al., 2011)

(Case, Daristotle, Hayekm, Smith, & Raash, 2011, p. 57)

(Case et al., 2011, p. 57)

(Case et al., 2011)

(Case et al., 2011)

(Case et al., 2011, p. 57)

(Case et al., 2011, p. 57)

In-Text Citation for Group or Corporate Authors

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH, 2003)

(NIMH, 2003)

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH, 2003, p. 5)

(NIMH, 2003, p. 5)

(University of Pittsburgh, 2005)

(University of Pittsburgh, 2005)

(University of Pittsburgh, 2005, p. 2)

(University of Pittsburgh, 2005, p. 2)

When should I use a direct quote in my paper? 

Direct quotes should only be used occasionally: 

  • When you need to share an exact definition 
  • When you want to provide specific evidence or information that cannot be paraphrased
  • When you want to use the original writer's terminology

From:  https://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/whaddyamean/ 

 (by indenting 0.5" or 1 tab) beneath the text of the paragraph.

(Miller et al., 2016, p. 136)

, therefore you need a different way to cite the information for a direct quote. There are two ways to do this: 

(Jones, 2014, para. 4)

(Scotts, 2019, Resou

Short Quotation

When you quote directly (i.e. use the exact words) from a source, enclose the words in quotation marks and add the page number to the in-text citation. There are two basic formats which can be used.:

The homeless were typically neglected growing up since they "commonly come from families who are riddled with problems and marital disharmony" (Rokach, 2005, p. 477).

As Rokach (2005) notes, the homeless "often have no one to care for them and no one knows them intimately" (p. 477).

Option one is the standard APA in-text citation format for quoting. The second option is used when the author's name for the work being cited is written in the lead in sentence before the quote.

Long Quotation

What Is a Long Quotation?

If your quotation contains more than forty words, it is a considered a long quotation. This can also be referred to as a block quotation.

Rules for Long Quotations

There are 4 rules that apply to long quotations that are different from regular quotations:

  • Place a colon at the end of the line that you write to introduce your long quotation.
  • Indent the long quotation 0.5 inches from the rest of the text, so it looks like a block of text.
  • Do not put quotation marks around the quotation.
  • Place the period at the end of the quotation  before  your in-text citation instead of  after , as with regular quotations.

Example of a Long Quotation

At the end of Lord of the Flies the boys are struck with the realization of their behaviour:

The tears began to flow and sobs shook him. He gave himself up to them now for the first time on the island; great, shuddering spasms of grief that seemed to wrench his whole body. His voice rose under the black smoke before the burning wreckage of the island; and infected by that emotion, the other little boys began to shake and sob too. (Golding, 1960, p.186)

No Page Numbers

When you quote from electronic sources that do not provide page numbers (like Web pages), provide another way to locate the quoted passage. You can use any of the following approaches:

Option 1 : Provide a heading or section name

Bowlby described "three phases of the separation response: protest, despair, and detachment" (Garelli, 2001, Bowlby's Initial Stance section).

Option 2 : Provide an abbreviated heading or section name, in quotation marks (use this if the heading or section title is very long)         note: full section title is: Get a Litter Box and Take Care of Sleeping Arrangements

Unpleasant odors can be minimized "with scrupulous maintenance of your cat's litter box" (Syufy, 2019, "Get a Litter Box" section).

Option 3 : Provide a paragraph number (count manually if they are not numbered):

It is important to remember that "study habits are very personal and what works for one student may not work for another" (Bennett, 2017, para. 3).

Option 4 : Provide a heading or section name in combination with a paragraph number:

It has been shown that "moods can vary depending on weather conditions" (Stark, 2015, Mood and Weather section, para. 2).

If a source has no page numbers and there is only one paragraph, skip that part of the in-text citation. The in-text citation would have the author(s) last name(s) and the year, e.g. (Garellio, 2001).

No Author and/or No Date

No Known Author:

Note that in most cases where a personal author is not named, a group author may be cited instead (eg. Statistics Canada). However, in certain cases, such as religious ancient texts, the author is unknown. Where you'd normally put the author's last name, instead use the first one, two, or three words from the title. Don't count initial articles like "A", "An" or "The". You should provide enough words to make it clear which work you're referring to from your References List.

If the title in the References list is in italics, italicize the words from the title in the in-text citation.

If you are citing an article, a chapter of a book or a page from a website, put the words in double quotation marks.

Capitalize the titles using title case (every major word is capitalized) even if the reference list entry uses sentence case (only first word is capitalized).

( Cell Biology , 2012, p. 157)

("Nursing," 2011, p. 9)

No Known Date of Publication :

Where you'd normally put the year of publication, instead use the letters "n.d.".

(Smith, n.d., p. 200)

  • Columbia College. (BC) (2021).  APA Citation Guide (7th edition) : In-Text Citation .  https://columbiacollege-ca.libguides.com/c.php? g=713274&p=5082934
  • East Carolina University Libraries. (2021).  APA Citation Style, 7th Edition: APA 6/7 Comparison Guide.   https://libguides.ecu.edu/c.php?g=982594&p=8158003
  • Gahan, C. (2020, October 15).  How to paraphrase sources .  https://tinyurl.com/y7ssxc6g  
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APA Style Guide: In-Text Citations and Paraphrasing

  • Document Formatting
  • Citation Formatting
  • In-Text Citations and Paraphrasing
  • Recognizing Plagiarism

Citing within your work without quotes

There are times when you will refer to a work but not use a quote. When you refer to another source's work, you have to cite the author and year the work came from.

Example 1 Plagiarism is generally treated as a serious academic offense at most universities (Johnson, 2003).
Example 2 Johnson in his work points out that plagiarism is treated as a serious academic offense at most universities (2003).

Using Direct Quotes

Directly quoting a source

If you are quoting a source word for word, you must include the page number on which the quote appears with the in-text citation.

Example  According to Johnson (2003), "Universities treat plagiarism very seriously and may expel students as a result" (p. 32).

Example 

(Author after quote)

As this plagiarism expert states, "Universities treat plagiarism very seriously and may expel students as a result" (Johnson, 2003, p. 32).

For sources that do not use page numbers, cite the paragraph the quote came from .

Example According to Anderson (2012), "Research begins by first brainstroming what you want to write your paper on" (para. 3).

Citing Long Quotations

For citing longer quotations (40 words or more), you will want to omit quotation marks and create a freestanding block. In this case, start the quotation on a new line, indent 1/2 inch from left margin and keep double spaced.

In Johnson’s (2003) book on plagiarism, he states:

                Universities treat plagiarism as a very serious offense

                and may expel students as a result. As such, it is important

                for librarians and professors alike to make sure students

                learn how to cite sources properly and credit the authors

                of the works they use. (p. 32)

Other In-Text Citation Examples

Unknown Author/Date : Sometimes sources will not provide an author or date. When citing, include the title of the work or shorter version of it, and n.d. for no date.

Example: In a study of how students researched, it was found those who started their projects early ended up creating higher quality papers ("Research Habits," n.d.).

Two Authors : Within the sentence use the word "and" in between the authors and in the citation use "&".

Example

James and Jones (2001) found that college students who did not sleep enough had lower grades.

Example One study found that college students who did not sleep enough had lower grades (James & Jones, 2001).

Three to Five Authors : In the first reference, use all authors when citing. For later references to the same work, just use the first author followed by "et al."

First citation Frogs prefer to ride unicycles over bicycles (Donalds, Wilson, Brown, Smith, & Alexander, 1998).
Subsequent citations of the study Frogs have have natural aptitude for riding unicycles due to their anatomy (Donalds et al., 1998).

Six or more authors:

Use the first author and "et al." for all references.

Example (Miller et al., 2013)

Work Discussed in Secondary Source:

When discussing a work found in a secondary source, first mention the work discussed and in parentheses mention the secondary work "as cited in."

Example According to Lewis's study (as cited in Wilson, 2001), business students were more likely to use the APA format in writing papers.

Discussing the same source multiple times in a paragraph

Need to discuss the same source multiple times in a paragraph? Dennis Johnson of Rasmussen College has some great advice on how to make sure the proper citations are included while avoiding an awkward amount of in-text citations. Follow this link to read examples:  https://rasmussen.libanswers.com/faq/32328

How to Quote

In-Text Citations: Quotations

In-Text Citations: Paraphrasing

How to Paraphrase

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  • In-text Citation: Indirect Quote (Paraphrase) Basics

APA 7th Edition: In-text Citation: Indirect Quote (Paraphrase) Basics

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Indirect Quote (Paraphrase): Basics

Indirect Quotation, or Paraphrase, refers to putting an author's ideas into your own words in your paper. Like direct quotes, the paraphrased passages require in-text citations in order to give credit to the original author. The  APA Publication Guide  states that sources should be paraphrased most of the time instead of using direct quotes (8.23). 

Original (Direct Quote):  

"The questions most people think about before retirement are 'How much money will I need?' and 'Am I saving enough?' But while financial security is certainly critical, people need to amass more than money for a successful retirement, experts say. They need to stockpile their emotional reserves, as well" (Chamberlain, 2014).

*note the use of single quotation marks around phrases within a longer passage in quotes ( APA Publication Manual  8.33).

Paraphrase:

Parenthetical Citation:

It is just as important to be emotionally prepared for retirement as financially prepared   ( C hamberlain 2014) .

Narrative Citation:

Chamberlain (2014) explains it is just as important to be emotionally prepared for retirement as financially prepared.

Indirect Quotes (Paraphrase): Parenthetical and Narrative Citation : Basic Format

Basic Format:   (Author Last Name, Year)   Example: (Bradshaw, 2013)  

Unlike Direct Quotes, page numbers are not required for Indirect Quotes. 

Avid readers of science fiction and fantasy books are more likely than readers of other genres to believe in futuristic scenarios - for example, that it will someday be possible to travel to other galaxies or power a car on solar energy  (Black et al., 2018).

Black et al., (2018)   have   shown that avid readers of science fiction and fantasy books are more likely than readers of other genres to believe in futuristic scenarios - for example, that it will someday be possible to travel to other galaxies or power a car on solar energy.

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Paraphrase: Write It in Your Own Words

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Paraphrasing is one way to use a text in your own writing without directly quoting source material. Anytime you are taking information from a source that is not your own, you need to specify where you got that information.

A paraphrase is...

  • Your own rendition of essential information and ideas expressed by someone else, presented in a new form.
  • One legitimate way (when accompanied by accurate documentation) to borrow from a source.
  • A more detailed restatement than a summary, which focuses concisely on a single main idea.

Paraphrasing is a valuable skill because...

  • It is better than quoting information from an undistinguished passage.
  • It helps you control the temptation to quote too much.
  • The mental process required for successful paraphrasing helps you to grasp the full meaning of the original.

6 Steps to Effective Paraphrasing

  • Reread the original passage until you understand its full meaning.
  • Set the original aside, and write your paraphrase on a note card.
  • Jot down a few words below your paraphrase to remind you later how you envision using this material. At the top of the note card, write a key word or phrase to indicate the subject of your paraphrase.
  • Check your rendition with the original to make sure that your version accurately expresses all the essential information in a new form.
  • Use quotation marks to identify any unique term or phraseology you have borrowed exactly from the source.
  • Record the source (including the page) on your note card so that you can credit it easily if you decide to incorporate the material into your paper.

Some examples to compare

Note that the examples in this section use MLA style for in-text citation.

The original passage:

Students frequently overuse direct quotation in taking notes, and as a result they overuse quotations in the final [research] paper. Probably only about 10% of your final manuscript should appear as directly quoted matter. Therefore, you should strive to limit the amount of exact transcribing of source materials while taking notes. Lester, James D. Writing Research Papers . 2nd ed., 1976, pp. 46-47.

A legitimate paraphrase:

In research papers, students often quote excessively, failing to keep quoted material down to a desirable level. Since the problem usually originates during note taking, it is essential to minimize the material recorded verbatim (Lester 46-47).

An acceptable summary:

Students should take just a few notes in direct quotation from sources to help minimize the amount of quoted material in a research paper (Lester 46-47).

A plagiarized version:

Students often use too many direct quotations when they take notes, resulting in too many of them in the final research paper. In fact, probably only about 10% of the final copy should consist of directly quoted material. So it is important to limit the amount of source material copied while taking notes.

A note about plagiarism: This example has been classed as plagiarism, in part, because of its failure to deploy any citation. Plagiarism is a serious offense in the academic world. However, we acknowledge that plagiarism is a difficult term to define; that its definition may be contextually sensitive; and that not all instances of plagiarism are created equal—that is, there are varying “degrees of egregiousness” for different cases of plagiarism.

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Apa quick citation guide.

  • In-text Citation
  • Citing Generative AI
  • Citing Web Pages and Social Media
  • Citing Articles
  • Citing Books
  • Citing Business Reports
  • Other Formats
  • APA Style Quiz

Using In-text Citation

Include an in-text citation when you refer to, summarize, paraphrase, or quote from another source. For every in-text citation in your paper, there must be a corresponding entry in your reference list.

APA in-text citation style uses the author's last name and the year of publication, for example: (Field, 2005). For direct quotations, include the page number as well, for example: (Field, 2005, p. 14). For sources such as websites and e-books that have no page numbers , use a paragraph number, for example: (Field, 2005, para. 1). More information on direct quotation of sources without pagination is given on the APA Style and Grammar Guidelines web page.

Example paragraph with in-text citation

A few researchers in the linguistics field have developed training programs designed to improve native speakers' ability to understand accented speech (Derwing et al., 2002; Thomas, 2004). Their training techniques are based on the research described above indicating that comprehension improves with exposure to non-native speech.   Derwing et al. (2002) conducted their training with students preparing to be social workers, but note that other professionals who work with non-native speakers could benefit from a similar program.

Derwing, T. M., Rossiter, M. J., & Munro, M. J. (2002). Teaching native speakers to listen to foreign-accented speech.  Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development , 23 (4), 245-259.

Thomas, H. K. (2004).  Training strategies for improving listeners' comprehension of foreign-accented speech  (Doctoral dissertation). University of Colorado, Boulder.

Citing Web Pages In Text

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.). For more information on citations for sources with no date or other missing information see the page on missing reference information on the APA Style and Grammar Guidelines web page. 

Below are examples of using in-text citation with web pages.

Web page with author:

In-text citation

Heavy social media use can be linked to depression and other mental disorders in teens (Asmelash, 2019).

Reference entry

Asmelash, L. (2019, August 14). Social media use may harm teens' mental health by disrupting positive activities, study says . CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/13/health/social-media-mental-health-trnd/index.html

Web page with organizational author:

More than 300 million people worldwide are affected by depression (World Health Organization, 2018).

World Health Organization. (2018, March 22).  Depression . https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

Web page with no date:

Establishing regular routines, such as exercise, can help survivors of disasters recover from trauma (American Psychological Association [APA], n.d.).

American Psychological Association. (n.d.). Recovering emotionally from disaste r. http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/recovering-disasters.aspx

General Guidelines

In-text references should immediately follow the title, word, or phrase to which they are directly relevant, rather than appearing at the end of long clauses or sentences. In-text references should always precede punctuation marks. Below are examples of using in-text citation.

Author's name in parentheses:

One study found that the most important element in comprehending non-native speech is familiarity with the topic (Gass & Varonis, 1984).

Author's name part of narrative:

Gass and Varonis (1984) found that the most important element in comprehending non-native speech is familiarity with the topic.

Group as author: First citation: (American Psychological Association [APA], 2015) Subsequent citation: (APA, 2015)

Multiple works: (separate each work with semi-colons)

Research shows that listening to a particular accent improves comprehension of accented speech in general (Gass & Varonis, 1984; Krech Thomas, 2004).

Direct quote: (include page number and place quotation marks around the direct quote)

One study found that “the listener's familiarity with the topic of discourse greatly facilitates the interpretation of the entire message” (Gass & Varonis, 1984, p. 85).

Gass and Varonis (1984) found that “the listener’s familiarity with the topic of discourse greatly facilitates the interpretation of the entire message” (p. 85).

Note:  For direct quotations of more than 40 words , display the quote as an indented block of text without quotation marks and include the authors’ names, year, and page number in parentheses at the end of the quote. For example:

This suggests that familiarity with nonnative speech in general, although it is clearly not as important a variable as topic familiarity, may indeed have some effect. That is, prior experience with nonnative speech, such as that gained by listening to the reading, facilitates comprehension. (Gass & Varonis, 1984, p. 77)

Works by Multiple Authors

APA style has specific rules for citing works by multiple authors. Use the following guidelines to determine how to correctly cite works by multiple authors in text. For more information on citing works by multiple authors see the APA Style and Grammar Guidelines page on in-text citation .

Note: When using multiple authors' names as part of your narrative, rather than in parentheses, always spell out the word and. For multiple authors' names within a parenthetic citation, use &.

One author: (Field, 2005)

Two authors: (Gass & Varonis, 1984)

Three or more authors:   (Tremblay et al., 2010)

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APA Citation Guide (7th edition) : Paraphrasing

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Paraphrasing

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Paraphrasing examples.

  • In-Text Citation for More Than One Author

In-Text Citation for Group or Corporate Authors

No author and/or no date.

When you write information from a source in your own words, cite the source by adding an in-text citation at the end of the paraphrased portion as follows:

Mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research following the publication of John Bowlby's studies (Hunt, 1993).

Note : If you refer to the author's name in a sentence you do not have to include the name again as part of your in-text citation, instead include the year of publication following his/her name:

Hunt (1993) noted that mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research after the publication of John Bowlby's studies.

Original Source

Homeless individuals commonly come from families who are riddled with problems and marital disharmony, and are alienated from their parents. They have often been physically and even sexually abused, have relocated frequently, and many of them may be asked to leave home or are actually thrown out, or alternatively are placed in group homes or in foster care. They often have no one to care for them and no one knows them intimately.

Source from: 

Rokach, A. (2005). The causes of loneliness in homeless youth. The Journal of Psychology , 139, 469-480. 

Example: Incorrect Paraphrasing

The homeless come from families with problems. Frequently, they have been physically or sexually abused, or have lived in group homes. Usually no one cares for them or knows them intimately (Rokach, 2005). 

Note : In this incorrect example the writing is too similar to the original source. The student only changed or removed a few words and has not phrased the ideas in a new way. 

Example: Correct Paraphrasing

Many homeless experience isolation in part due to suffering from abuse or neglect during their childhood (Rokach, 2005).

Note : The example keeps the idea of the original writing but phrases it in a new way.

In-Text Citation For Two or More Authors/Editors

Number of Authors/Editors First Time Paraphrased Second and Subsequent Times Paraphrased First Time Quoting Second and Subsequent Times Quoting
Two

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011)

(Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57) (Case & Daristotle, 2011, p. 57)
Three or more (Case et al., 2011) (Case et al., 2011) (Case et al., 2011, p. 57) (Case et al., 2011, p. 57)
Type of Group First Time Paraphrased Second and Subsequent Times Paraphrased First Time Quoting Second and Subsequent Times Quoting
Groups readily identified through abbreviations

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH, 2003)

(NIMH, 2003)

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH, 2003, p. 5) (NIMH, 2003, p. 5)
Groups with no abbreviations (University of Pittsburgh, 2005) (University of Pittsburgh, 2005) (University of Pittsburgh, 2005, p. 2) (University of Pittsburgh, 2005, p. 2)

No Known Author:

Note that in most cases where a personal author is not named, a group author may be cited instead (eg. Statistics Canada). However, in certain cases, such as religious ancient texts, the author is unknown. Where you'd normally put the author's last name, instead use the first one, two, or three words from the title. Don't count initial articles like "A", "An" or "The". You should provide enough words to make it clear which work you're referring to from your References List.

If the title in the References list is in italics, italicize the words from the title in the in-text citation.

If you are citing an article, a chapter of a book or a page from a website, put the words in double quotation marks.

Capitalize the titles using title case (every major word is capitalized) even if the reference list entry uses sentence case (only first word is capitalized).

( Cell Biology , 2012, p. 157)

("Nursing," 2011, p. 9)

No Known Date of Publication :

Where you'd normally put the year of publication, instead use the letters "n.d.".

(Smith, n.d., p. 200)

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  • Plagiarism and grammar
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APA Citation Generator

Don't let plagiarism errors spoil your paper, a comprehensive guide to apa citations and format, overview of this guide:.

This page provides you with an overview of APA format, 7th edition. Included is information about referencing, various citation formats with examples for each source type, and other helpful information.

If you’re looking for MLA format , check out the Citation Machine MLA Guide. Also, visit the Citation Machine homepage to use the APA formatter, which is an APA citation generator, and to see more styles .

Being responsible while researching

When you’re writing a research paper or creating a research project, you will probably use another individual’s work to help develop your own assignment. A good researcher or scholar uses another individual’s work in a responsible way. This involves indicating that the work of other individuals is included in your project (i.e., citing), which is one way to prevent plagiarism.

Plagiarism? What is it?

The word plagiarism is derived from the Latin word, plagiare , which means “to kidnap.” The term has evolved over the years to now mean the act of taking another individual’s work and using it as your own, without acknowledging the original author (American Psychological Association, 2020 p. 21). Plagiarism can be illegal and there can be serious ramifications for plagiarizing someone else’s work. Thankfully, plagiarism can be prevented. One way it can be prevented is by including citations and references in your research project. Want to make them quickly and easily? Try the Citation Machine citation generator, which is found on our homepage.

All about citations & references

Citations and references should be included anytime you use another individual’s work in your own assignment. When including a quote, paraphrased information, images, or any other piece of information from another’s work, you need to show where you found it by including a citation and a reference. This guide explains how to make them.

APA style citations are added in the body of a research paper or project and references are added to the last page.

Citations , which are called in-text citations, are included when you’re adding information from another individual’s work into your own project. When you add text word-for-word from another source into your project, or take information from another source and place it in your own words and writing style (known as paraphrasing), you create an in-text citation. These citations are short in length and are placed in the main part of your project, directly after the borrowed information.

References are found at the end of your research project, usually on the last page. Included on this reference list page is the full information for any in-text citations found in the body of the project. These references are listed in alphabetical order by the author's last name.

An APA in-text citation includes only three items: the last name(s) of the author(s), the year the source was published, and sometimes the page or location of the information. References include more information such as the name of the author(s), the year the source was published, the full title of the source, and the URL or page range.

Two example in-text citations.

Why is it important to include citations & references

Including APA citations and references in your research projects is a very important component of the research process. When you include citations, you’re being a responsible researcher. You’re showing readers that you were able to find valuable, high-quality information from other sources, place them into your project where appropriate, all while acknowledging the original authors and their work.

Common ways students and scholars accidentally plagiarize

Believe it or not, there are instances when you could attempt to include in-text and full references in the appropriate places, but still accidentally plagiarize. Here are some common mistakes to be aware of:

Mistake #1 - Misquoting sources: If you plan to use a direct quote, make sure you copy it exactly as is. Sure, you can use part of the full quote or sentence, but if you decide to put quotation marks around any words, those words should match exactly what was found in the original source. Here’s a line from The Little Prince , by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry:

“Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them.”

Here’s an acceptable option:

“Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves,” stated de Saint-Exupéry (1943, p. 3).

Here’s a misquote:

“Grown-ups barely ever understand anything by themselves,” stated de Saint-Exupéry (1943, p. 3).

Notice the slight change in the words. The incorrect phrasing is an instance of accidental plagiarism.

Mistake #2 - Problems with paraphrasing: When we paraphrase, we restate information using our own words and writing style. It’s not acceptable to substitute words from the original source with synonyms.

Let’s use the same sentence from The Little Prince .

A correct paraphrase could be:

de Saint-Exupéry (1943) shares various ways adults frustrate children. One of the biggest being that kids have to explain everything. It’s too bad adults are unable to comprehend anything on their own (p. 3).

An incorrect paraphrase would be:

de Saint-Exupéry (1943) shares that adults never understand anything by themselves, and it is exhausting for kids to be always and forever clarifying things to them (p.3).

Notice how close the incorrect paraphrase is from the original. This is an instance of accidental plagiarism.

Make sure you quote and paraphrase properly in order to prevent accidental plagiarism.

If you’re having a difficult time paraphrasing properly, it is acceptable to paraphrase part of the text AND use a direct quote. Here’s an example:

de Saint-Exupery (1943) shares various ways adults frustrate children. One of the biggest being that kids have to explain everything, and “it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them” (p. 3).

Information About APA

Who created it.

The American Psychological Association is an organization created for individuals in the psychology field. With close to 121,000 members, they provide educational opportunities, funding, guidance, and research information for everything psychology-related. They also have numerous high-quality databases, peer-reviewed journals, and books that revolve around mental health.

The American Psychological Association is also credited with creating their own specific citation and reference style. Today, this format is used by individuals not only in the psychology field, but many other subject areas as well. Education, economics, business, and social sciences also use APA style quite frequently. Click here for more information . This guide covers general information about the style, but is not affiliated with the American Psychological Association.

Why was this style created?

This format was first developed in 1929 to form a standardized way for researchers in science fields to document their sources. Prior to the inception of these standards and guidelines, individuals were recognizing the work of other authors by including bits and pieces of information in random order. There wasn’t a set way to format citations and references. You can probably imagine how difficult it was to understand the sources that were used for research projects!

Having a standard format for citing sources allows readers to glance at a citation or APA reference and easily locate the title, author, year published, and other critical pieces of information needed to understand a source.

The evolution of this style

The guide below is based on APA style 7th edition, which was released in 2020. In previous versions of APA format, researchers and scholars were required to include the publisher location for books and the date that an electronic resource was accessed. Both are no longer required to be included.

Details on the differences between the 6th and 7th editions is addressed later in this guide.

Citations & References

The appearance of citations & references.

The format for references varies, but most use this general format:

%%Author’s Last name, First initial. (Date published). Title . URL

Researchers and scholars must look up the proper format for the source that they’re attempting to cite. Books have a certain format, websites have a different format, periodicals have a different format, and so on. Scroll down to find the proper format for the source you’re citing or referencing.

If you would like help citing your sources, CitationMachine.com has a citation generator that will help make the APA citation process much easier for you. To start, simply click on the source type you're citing:

  • Journal articles

In-text citations

An APA in-text citation is included in research projects in three instances: When using a direct quote, paraphrasing information, or simply referring to a piece of information from another source.

Quite often, researchers and scholars use a small amount of text, word for word, from another source and include it in their own research projects. This is done for many reasons. Sometimes, another author’s words are so eloquently written that there isn’t a better way to rephrase it yourself. Other times, the author’s words can help prove a point or establish an understanding for something in your research project. When using another author’s exact words in your research project, include an APA in-text citation directly following it.

In addition to using the exact words from another source and placing them into your project, these citations are also added anytime you paraphrase information. Paraphrasing is when you take information from another source and rephrase it, in your own words.

When simply referring to another piece of information from another source, also include a citation directly following it.

Citations in the text are found near a direct quote, paraphrased information, or next to a mention of another source. To see examples of some narrative/ parenthetical citations in action, look at the image above, under “All About Citations & References.”

Note: *Only include the page or paragraph number when using a direct quote or paraphrase. Page numbers have a p. before the number, pp. before the page range, and para. before the paragraph number. This information is included to help the reader locate the exact portion of text themselves. It is unnecessary to include this information when you’re simply referring to another source.

Examples of APA in-text citations:

“Well, you’re about to enter the land of the free and the brave. And I don’t know how you got that stamp on your passport. The priest must know someone” (Tóibín, 2009, p. 52).
Student teachers who use technology in their lessons tend to continue using technology tools throughout their teaching careers (Kent & Giles, 2017, p. 12).

If including the author’s name in the sentence, place the year in the parentheses directly next to his or her name. Add the page number at the end, unless it’s a source without any pages or paragraph numbers (See Section 8.10 of the Publication manual for more details).

In-text citation APA example:

According to a study done by Kent and Giles (2017), student teachers who use technology in their lessons tend to continue using technology tools throughout their teaching careers.

The full references, or citations, for these sources can be found on the last part of a research project, titled the “References.”

Here’s how to create in-text citations for specific amounts of authors:

APA citation with no author

When the source lacks an author’s name, place the title, year, and page number (if available) in the text. The title should be in italics if it sits alone (such as a movie, brochure, or report). If the source is part of a whole (as many web pages and articles are), place the title in quotation marks without italics (See Section 8.14 of the Publication manual ).

Structure of an APA format citation in the text narratively, with the author's name missing:

Title of Source (Year) or “Title of Source” (Year)

Structure of an APA style format citation, in parentheses at the end of the sentence, with the author’s name missing: (Title of Source, Year) or (“Title of Source,” Year)

Structure for one author

In the text, narratively: Last name of Author (Year)...(page number).

In parentheses, at the end of the sentence: (Last name of Author, Year, page number).

Structure for two authors

Place the authors in the order they appear on the source. Only use the ampersand in the parenthetical citations (see Section 8.17 of the Publication manual ). Use ‘and’ to separate the author names if they’re in the text of the sentence.

In the text, narratively: Last name of Author 1 and Last name of Author 2 (Year)....(page number).

In parentheses, at the end of the sentence: (Last name of Author 1 & Last name of Author 2, Year, page number).

Structure for three or more authors

Only include the first listed author’s name in the first and any subsequent citations. Follow it with et al.

(Last name Author 1 et al., Year, page number)

(Agbayani et al., 2020, p. 99)

Last name of Author 1 et al. (Year)...(page).

Agbayani et al. (2020)...(p. 99)

One author, multiple works, same year

What do you do when you want to cite multiple works by an author, and the sources all written in the same year?

Include the letters ‘a’ ‘b’ ‘c’ and so on after the year in the citation.

(Jackson, 2013a)

Jackson (2013a)

Writers can even lump dates together.

Example: Jackson often studied mammals while in Africa (2013a, 2013b).

On the APA reference page, include the same letters in the full references.

Groups and organizations

Write out the full name of the group or organization in the first citation and place the abbreviation next to it in brackets. If the group or organization is cited again, only include the abbreviation. If it doesn’t have an abbreviation associated with it, write out the entire organization’s name each and every time (see Section 8.21 of the Publication manual ).

First APA citation for an organization with an abbreviation: (World Health Organization [WHO], Year)

World Health Organization (WHO, Year)

Notice in the example directly above, the name of the organization is written out in full in the text of the sentence, and the abbreviation is placed in parentheses next to it.

Subsequent APA citations in the text for an organization with an abbreviation: (WHO, Year) OR WHO (Year)

All citations in the text for an organization without an abbreviation: (Citation Machine, Year) or Citation Machine (Year)

One in-text citation, multiple works

Sometimes you’ll need to cite more than one work within an in-text citation. Follow the same format (author, year) format but place semicolons between works (p. 263).

(Obama, 2016; Monroe et al., 1820; Hoover & Coolidge, 1928)

Reminder: There are many citation tools available on CitationMachine.com. Head to our homepage to learn more, check out our APA citation website, and cite your sources easily! The most useful resource on our website? Our APA citation generator, which doesn’t just create full references, it’s also an APA in-text citation website! It’ll do both for you!

Click here to learn more about crediting work .

Reference list citation components

References display the full information for all the citations found in the body of a research project.

Some things to keep in mind when it comes to the references:

  • All references sit together on their own page, which is usually the last page(s) of a paper.
  • Title the page ‘References’
  • Place ‘References’ in the center of the page and bold it. Keep the title in the same font and size as the references. Do not italicize, underline, place the title in quotation marks, or increase the font size.
  • The entire page is double spaced.
  • All references are listed in alphabetical order by the first word in the reference, which is usually the author’s last name. If the source lacks an author, alphabetize the source by the title (ignore A, An, or The)
  • All references have a hanging indent, meaning that the second line of text is indented in half an inch. See examples throughout this guide.
  • Remember, each and every citation in the text of the paper MUST have a full reference displayed in the reference list. The citations in the text provide the reader with a quick glimpse about the sources used, but the references in the reference list provide the reader with all the information needed to seek out the source themselves.

Learn more about each component of the reference citation and how to format it in the sections that follow. See an APA sample paper reference list at the end of this entire section.

Author’s names

The names of authors are written in reverse order. Include the initials for the first and middle names. End this information with a period (see Section 9.8 of the Publication manual ).

Format: Last name, F. M.

  • Angelou, M.
  • Doyle, A. C.

Two or more authors

When two or more authors work together on a source, write them in the order in which they appear on the source. You can name up to 20 authors in the reference. For sources with 2 to 20 authors, place an ampersand (&) before the final author. Use this format:

Last name, F. M., & Last name, F. M.

Last name, F. M., Last name, F. M., Last name, F. M., Last name, F. M., & Last name, F. M.

Kent, A. G., Giles, R. M., Thorpe, A., Lukes, R., Bever, D. J., & He, Y.

If there are 21 or more authors listed on a source, only include the first 19 authors, add three ellipses, and then add the last author’s name.

Roberts, A., Johnson, M. C., Klein, J., Cheng, E. V., Sherman, A., Levin, K. K. , ...Lopez, G. S.

If you plan on using a free APA citation tool, like the one at CitationMachine.com, the names of the authors will format properly for you.

###No authors

If the source lacks an author, place the title in the first position in the reference (Section 9.12 of the Publication manual ). When the source’s title begins with a number (Such as 101 Dalmatians ), place the reference alphabetically as if the number was spelled out. 101 Dalmatians would be placed in the spot where ‘One hundred’ would go, but keep the numbers in their place.

Additionally, if the title begins with the words ‘A’, ‘An,’ or ‘The,’ ignore these words and place the title alphabetically according to the next word.

See the “Titles” section below for more information on formatting the title of sources.

###Corporate/Organization authors

On an APA reference page, corporate authors are always written out in full. In the text of your paper, you may have some abbreviations (such as UN for United Nations), but in the full references, always include the full names of the corporation or organization (following Section 9.11 of the official Publication manual ).

%%United Nations. (2019). Libya: $202 million needed to bring life-saving aid to half a million people hit by humanitarian crisis. https://news.un.org/en/story/2019/02/1031981

Publication date & retrieval date

Directly after the author’s name is the date the source was published. Include the full date for newspapers and magazine articles, and only the year for journals and all other sources. If no date is found on the source, include the initials, n.d. for “no date.”

%% Narducci, M. (2017, May 19). City renames part of 11th Street Ed Snider Way to honor Flyers founder. The Philadelphia Inquirer . http://www.philly.com/

If using our APA Citation Machine, our citation generator will add the correct format for you automatically.

Giving a retrieval date is not needed unless the online content is likely to be frequently updated and changed (e.g., encyclopedia article, dictionary entry, Twitter profile, etc.).

%%Citation Machine [@CiteMachine]. (n.d.). Tweets [Twitter profile]. Twitter. Retrieved October 10, 2019, from https://twitter.com/CiteMachine

When writing out titles for books, articles, chapters, or other non-periodical sources, only capitalize the first word of the title and the first word of the subtitle. Names of people, places, organizations, and other proper nouns also have the first letter capitalized. For books and reports, italicize the title in the APA citation.

Strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Roots: The saga of an American family.

For articles and chapters in APA referencing, do not italicize the title.

Wake up the nation: Public libraries, policy making, and political discourse.

For newspapers, magazines, journals, newsletters, and other periodicals, capitalize the first letter in each word and italicize the title.

The Seattle Times.

A common question is whether to underline your title or place it in italics or quotation marks in the reference list. Here’s a good general rule: When a source sits alone and is not part of a larger whole, place the title in italics. If the source does not sit alone and is part of a larger whole, do not place it in italics.

Books, movies, journals, and television shows are placed in italics since they stand alone. Songs on an album, episodes of television shows, chapters in books, and articles in journals are not placed in italics since they are smaller pieces of larger wholes.

The Citation Machine citation generator will format the title in your citations automatically.

Additional information about the title

If you feel it would be helpful to include additional information about the source type, include a descriptive noun or two in brackets immediately following the title. Capitalize the first letter.

%%Kennedy, K., & Molen, G. R. (Producers), & Spielberg, S. (Director). (1993). Jurassic Park [Film]. USA: Universal.

Besides [Film], other common notations include:

  • [Audio podcast]
  • [Letter to the editor]
  • [Television series episode]
  • [Facebook page]
  • [Blog post]
  • [Lecture notes]
  • [PowerPoint presentation]
  • [Video file]

If you are using Citation Machine citing tools, additional information about the title is automatically added for you.

Publisher information

For books and reports, include the publisher name but not the location (see Section 9.29 of the Publication manual ). Older editions of the style required the city, state and/or country, but this hasn't been the case since the 7th edition was released.

It is not necessary to include the entire name of the publisher. It is acceptable to use a brief, intelligible form. However, if Books or Press are part of the publisher’s names, keep these words in the reference. Other common terms, such as Inc., Co., Publishers, and others can be omitted.

For newspapers, journals, magazines, and other periodicals, include the volume and issue number after the title. The volume number is listed first, by itself, in italics. The issue number is in parentheses immediately after it, not italicized. There is no space after the closing parenthesis and before the volume number.

%%Giannoukos, G., Besas, G., Hictour, V., & Georgas, T. (2016). A study on the role of computers in adult education. Educational Research and Reviews , 11 (9), 907-923. https://doi.org/10.5897/ERR2016.2688

After including the publisher information, end this section with a period.

Perseus Books.

Electronic source information:

For online sources, the URL or DOI (Direct Object Identifier) are included at the end of an APA citation.

DOI numbers are often created by publishers for journal articles and other periodical sources. They were created in response to the problem of broken or outdated links and URLs. When a journal article is assigned a DOI number, it is static and will never change. Because of its permanent characteristic, DOIs are the preferred type of electronic information to include in APA citations. When a DOI number is not available, include the source’s URL (see Section 9.34 in the Publication manual ).

For DOIs, include the number in this format:

http://doi.org/xxxx

For URLs, type them in this format:

http:// or https://

Other information about electronic sources:

  • If the URL is longer than a line, break it up before a punctuation mark.
  • Do not place a period at the end of the citation/URL.
  • It is unnecessary to include retrieval dates, unless the source changes often over time (like in a Wikipedia article).
  • It is not necessary to include the names of databases

If using the Citation Machine APA citation website autocite features, the online publication information will be automatically replaced by the DOI. The Citation Machine APA template will properly cite your online sources for you.

The image shows an example APA student page that is formatted using the guidelines described under the heading Paper Formatting.

Make sure you run your completed paper through the Citation Machine Plus smart proofreader, which scans for grammar, spelling, and plagiarism. Whether it’s an adjective , verb , or pronoun out-of-place, our technology helps edits your paper for you!

Annotated bibliographies:

An APA annotated bibliography is a full bibliography that includes a small note for each reference citation. Each note should be short (1-2 paragraphs) and contain a summary or your evaluation about each source. When creating your citations on CitationMachine.net, there is a field at the bottom of each form to add your own annotations.

Follow the publication manual guidelines on paper format and writing style. Let your instructor guide other details about your annotations. Still confused? Read our guide on annotated bibliographies .

These types of projects look different depending on the style you’re using. Use the link at the top of the page to access resources related to the Modern Language Association’s style. Here’s information related to Chicago citation style .

Page formatting

Need help with the design and formatting of your paper? Look no further! This section provides the ins and outs of properly displaying the information in your APA essay.

  • Times New Roman, 12-point size.
  • Calibri, Arial, or Georgia, 11-point size
  • Lucida, Sans Unicode, or Computer Modern, 10-point size
  • Indents = Every paragraph should start with an indent.
  • Margins = 1 inch around the entire document
  • Spacing = Double space everything!

Arrange your pages in this order:

  • Page 1 - APA Title Page (see below for information on the title page)
  • Page 2 - Abstract (If your professor requests one)
  • Page 3 - First page of text
  • References begin on their own page. Include the list of references on the page after the text.
  • Tables and figures

Keep in mind that the order above is the recommendation for papers being submitted for peer review. If you’re writing an APA style paper for a class, your professor may be more lenient about the requirements. Also, if you’re submitting your paper for a specific journal, check the requirements on the journal’s website. Each journal has different rules and procedures.

Just a little nudge to remind you about the Citation Machine Plus smart proofreader. Whether it’s a conjunction or interjection out of place, a misspelled word, or an out of place citation, we’ll offer suggestions for improvement! Don’t forget to check out our APA citation maker while you’re at it!

Running heads

In older editions of APA, running heads were required for all papers. Since the 7th edition, that’s changed.

  • Student paper: No running head
  • Professional paper: Include a running head

The running head displays the title of the paper and the page number on all pages of the paper. This header is found on every page of a professional paper (not a student paper), even on the title page (sometimes called an APA cover page) and reference list (taken from Section 2.8 of the Publication manual ).

It's displayed all in capital letters at the top of the page. Across from the running head, along the right margin, is the page number.

  • Use the header feature in your word processor. Both Google Docs and Word have these features available.
  • Use one for the recommended fonts mentioned under "Page formatting."

Title pages

A title page, sometimes called an APA cover page, graces the cover of an essay or paper. An APA title page should follow rules from Section 2.3 of the official Publication manual and include:

  • Page number, which is page 1
  • Use title case and bold font
  • The title should be under 12 words in length
  • The title should be a direct explanation of the focus of the paper. Do not include any unnecessary descriptors such as “An Analysis of…” or “A Study of…”
  • Exclude any labels such as Mr., Ms., Dr, PhD...
  • Name of the school or institution
  • Course number and/or class name
  • Name of your instructor, including their preferred honorifics (e.g., PhD, Dr., etc.)
  • Paper’s due date
  • If this is a professional paper, also include a running head. If this is a student paper, do not include one.

Follow the directions for the running head and page number in the section above. Below the running head, a few lines beneath, and centered in the middle of the page, should be the title. The next line below is the author’s name(s), followed by the name of the school or institution, the class or course name, your instructor’s name, and the paper’s due date.

All components on this page should be written in the same font and size as the rest of your paper. Double space the title, names, name of school or institution, and all other information on the page (except for the running head and page number).

Example - Student Title Page APA:

The image shows an example APA student title page that is formatted using the guidelines described above under the heading Title Pages.

Example - Professional Title Page APA:

The image shows an example APA professional title page that is formatted using the guidelines described above under the heading Title Pages.

If you’re submitting your paper to a journal for publication, check the journal’s website for exact requirements. Each journal is different and some may request a different type of APA format cover page.

Looking to create an APA format title page? Head to CitationMachine.com’s homepage and choose “Title Page” at the top of the screen.

An abstract briefly but thoroughly summarizes dissertation contents. It’s found in the beginning of a professional paper, right after the title page. Abstracts are meant to help readers determine whether to continue reading the entire document. With that in mind, try to craft the lead sentence to entice the reader to continue reading.

Here are a few tips:

  • Be factual and keep your opinions out. An abstract should accurately reflect the paper or dissertation and should not involve information or commentary not in the thesis.
  • Communicate your main thesis. What was the examined problem or hypothesis? A reader should know this from reading your abstract.
  • Keep it brief. Stick to the main points and don’t add unnecessary words or facts. It should not exceed 250 words.
  • Consider your paper’s purpose. It’s important to cater your abstract to your paper type and think about what information the target audience for that paper type would want. For example, an empirical article may mention methodology or participant description. A quantitative or qualitative meta-analysis would mention the different variables considered and how information was synthesized.
  • Use verbs over noun equivalents, and active voice. Example: “There was research into…” becomes “We researched…”

Formatting guidelines:

  • The abstract goes after the title page.
  • It should have the same font (size and type) as the rest of the paper.
  • It should stick to one page.
  • Double-space all page text.
  • Center and bold the word “Abstract” at the top of the paper.
  • Don’t indent the first line of the abstract body. The body should also be in plain text.
  • For the keywords, place it on the line after the abstract and indent the first line (but not subsequent lines). The word “Keywords:” is capitalized, italicized, and followed by a colon. The actual keywords are sentence case and in plan font.
  • List each keyword one after the other, and separate them by a comma.
  • After the last keyword, no ending punctuation is needed.

The image shows an example APA abstract page that is formatted using the guidelines described above under the heading Abstracts.

Tables & Figures

If your paper includes a lot of numerical information or data, you may want to consider placing it into a table or a figure, rather than typing it all out. A visual figure or simple, organized table filled with numerical data is often easier for readers to digest and comprehend than tons of paragraphs filled with numbers. Chapter 7 of the Publication manual outlines formatting for tables and figures. Let's cover the basics below.

If you’d like to include a table or figure in your paper, here are a few key pieces of information to keep in mind:

  • At the end of the paper after the APA reference page
  • In the text after it is first mentioned
  • The table first mentioned in the text should be titled ‘Table 1.’ The next table mentioned in the text is ‘Table 2,’ and so on. For figures, it would be 'Figure 1,' 'Figure 2,' and so forth.

The image shows that an APA paper with tables can be organized as follows – 1. Title page, 2. Text of paper, 3. References, 4. Table 1, 5. Table 2.

  • Even though every table and figure is numbered, also create a title for each that describes the information it contains. Capitalize all important words in the title.
  • For tables, do not use any vertical lines, only use horizontal to break up information and headings.
  • Single spacing is acceptable to use in tables and figures. If you prefer double spacing your information, that is okay too.
  • Do not include extra information or “fluff.” Keep it simple!
  • Do not include the same exact information in the paper. Only include the complete information in one area—the table or the text.
  • All tables and figures must be referenced in the text. It is unacceptable to throw a table or figure into the back of the paper without first providing a brief summary or explanation of its relevance.

Example of formatting a table in APA style.

Publication Manual 6th Edition vs 7th Edition

The 6th edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association was released in 2009. The current 7th edition came out in the fall of 2019 and was designed to be more student focused, provide more guidance on accessibility, and address changes that have developed over the last 10 years.

Below, we’ve listed what we feel are the most relevant changes related to APA format.

Journals and DOIs

DOI stands for “digital object identifier.” Many journal articles use and have a unique DOI that should be included in a full citation.

When including a DOI in a citation, format it as a URL. Do not label it “DOI.” Articles without DOIs from databases are treated as print works. For example:

6th edition:

%%Gänsicke, B. T., Schreiber, M. R., Toloza, O., Fusillo, N. P. G., Koester, D., & Manser, C. J. (2019). Accretion of a giant planet onto a white dwarf star. Nature, 576 (7785), 61–64. doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1789-8

7th edition:

%%Gänsicke, B. T., Schreiber, M. R., Toloza, O., Fusillo, N. P. G., Koester, D., & Manser, C. J. (2019). Accretion of a giant planet onto a white dwarf star. Nature, 576 (7785), 61–64. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-019-1789-8

Citing Books

There are few new guidelines when you are citing a book. First, the publisher location no longer needs to be indicated.

%%Zack, P. O. (2001). The shoals of time. Bloomington, IN: First Books Library.

%%Zack, P. O. (2001). The shoals of time. First Books Library.

Second, the format of an ebook (e.g., Kindle, etc.) no longer needs to be indicated.

%%Niven, J. (2012). Ada Blackjack: A true story of survival in the Arctic [Kindle].

%%Niven, J. (2012). Ada Blackjack: A true story of survival in the Arctic .

Lastly, books from research databases without DOIs are treated the same as print works.

When using a URL in a citation, you no longer need to include the term “Retrieved from” before URLs (except with retrieval dates). The font should be blue and underlined, or black and not underlined.

6th Edition:

%%Flood, A. (2019, December 6). Britain has closed almost 800 libraries since 2010, figures show. The Guardian . Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/dec/06/britain-has-closed-almost-800-libraries-since-2010-figures-show

7th Edition:

%%Flood, A. (2019, December 6). Britain has closed almost 800 libraries since 2010, figures show. The Guardian . https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/dec/06/britain-has-closed-almost-800-libraries-since-2010-figures-show

Within a full APA citation, you may spell out up to 20 author names. For two to 20 authors, include an ampersand (&) before the name of the last author. For sources with 21 or more authors, structure it as follows:

Structure: First 19 authors’ names, . . . Last author’s name.

7th edition example: Washington, G., Adams, J., Jefferson, T., Madison, J., Monroe, J., Adams, J. Q., Jackson, A., Van Buren, M., Harrison, W. H., Tyler, J., Polk, J. K., Taylor, Z., Filmore, M., Pierce, F., Buchanan, J., Lincoln, A., Johnson, A., Grant, U. S., Hayes, R. B., Garfield, . . . Trump, D.

When creating an in-text citation for a source with 3 or more authors, use “et al.” after the first author’s name. This helps abbreviate the mention.

6th Edition: (Honda, Johnson, Prosser, Rossi, 2019)

7th Edition: (Honda et al., 2019)

Tables and Figures

Instead of having different formats for tables and figures, both use one standardized format. Now both tables and figures have a number, a title, name of the table/figure, and a note at the bottom.

If you’re still typing into Google “how to cite a website APA” among other related questions and keywords, click here for further reading on the style .

When you’re through with your writing, toss your entire paper into the Citation Machine Plus plagiarism checker , which will scan your paper for grammar edits and give you up to 5 suggestions cards for free! Worry less about a determiner , preposition , or adverb out of place and focus on your research!

American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.) (2020). American Psychological Association. https://doi.org/10.1037/0000165-000

Updated March 3, 2020

Written and edited by Michele Kirschenbaum and Wendy Ikemoto. Michele Kirschenbaum has been an awesome school librarian since 2006 and is an expert in citing sources. Wendy Ikemoto has a master’s degree in library and information science and has been working for Citation Machine since 2012.

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APA Style Citation Resources

This guide includes examples of APA style end-of-text references for books and articles and in-text references. Use the resources linked below for information on end-of-text references for other materials and formats.

  • Purdue OWL: APA A comprehensive guide to APA formatting and citation
  • APA Documentation Guide UW-Madison provides an orientation to APA formatting.

In-Text References (7th ed.)

In-text citations.

Any time a source is directly quoted or paraphrased it needs to be cited within the text, in addition to appearing in the list of references.

Direct Quote : You will need to include the author, year of publication, and page number of the quote.

  • Tilley (2001) describes the process of apprenticeship as "watching and learning, then coaching followed by hands-on practice" (p. 205).
  • She stated, "watching and learning, then coaching followed by hands-on practice" (Tilley, 2001, p. 205), is the best process for effective apprenticeship.

Paraphrasing:  APA requires that, with paraphrasing, the author and year of publication be included in the in-text citation. The inclusion of the page number is not required but is encouraged.

  • Muddiman (1995) points out that with new emerging technologies there is a shift from knowledge to skills within librarianship.

End-of-Text References (7th ed.)

Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (Year). Title of article.  Title of Periodical , volume number (issue number), pages. https://doi.org/xx.xxx/yyyy

Print Article

Ellery, K. (2008). Undergraduate plagiarism: A pedagogical perspective. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education , 33 (5), 507-516.

Online Article

Herbst-Damm, K. L., & Kulik, J. A. (2005). Volunteer support, marital status, and the survival times of terminally ill patients. Health Psychology , 24 , 225-229. doi: 10.1037/0278-6133.24.225

Author, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of work: Capital letter also for subtitle . Publisher Name. DOI (if available)

Chapter in an edited book

Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Year of publication). Title of chapter. In E. E. Editor & F. F. Editor (Eds.), Title of work: Capital letter also for subtitle (pp. pages of chapter). Publisher. DOI (if available)

Shields, C. J. (2006). Mockingbird: A portrait of Harper Lee . Henry Holt.

Multiple authors

Anson, C. M., Schwegler, R. A., & Muth, M. F. (2000). The Longman writer's companion. (4th ed).  Longman.

Smith, P. M. (2006). The diverse librarian . In E. Connor (Ed.). An introduction to reference services in academic libraries . (pp. 137-140). Haworth Press.

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How To Do Citations – MLA, APA, & Chicago

How To Do Citations Feature Image

Citations are an essential part of academic writing and non-fiction, ensuring that you give proper credit to the original authors of your sources. While important, they can also be a cause for confusion for writers. How do you do citations? How are citations formatted? Today, I’ll cover everything you need to know about how to do citations.

Below, we’ll discuss when and how to use citations and how to choose the correct citation style for your work. We’ll cover in-text citations, creating a reference list, and addressing particular types of sources. I will also look at examples of MLA, APA, Chicago, and more, and finally address some frequently asked questions. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

Table of Contents

How to do citations.

the word "citation" on the page of a dictionary

What is a Citation?

A  citation  is a reference to a source of information used in your research or writing. It typically includes details such as the author’s name, the title of the work, publication date, and page numbers. Citations are used to acknowledge the work of others and to guide readers to the original source.

For example, if you were citing a non-fiction book, it might look like this:

  • Gladwell, M. (2008).  Outliers: The Story of Success . Little, Brown and Company.

In this particular format (APA), the author’s last name is followed by the first initial. Then, the year the book was published, the title of the book, and finally, the publishing company . These citations provide enough information for readers to locate the original source and verify or continue research on the information used in your work.

What Are Citations For?

Now that we know what a citation is let’s look at why it’s important. Citations  are vital to academic works and several non-fiction genres for several reasons. Proper citations of the works you reference help you to:

  • Avoiding Plagiarism: By citing sources, you give credit to the original authors, thus avoiding plagiarism.
  • Verifying Information : Citations allow readers to verify the information and follow up on your sources.
  • Contributing to Scholarly Work : They show that you have engaged with existing research and contribute to the ongoing academic conversation.

When to Cite Sources?

So, when exactly should you be citing sources in your work? You should cite sources in the following circumstances:

  • Direct Quotes : When you use the exact words from a source.
  • Paraphrasing : When you rewrite the information from a source in your own words.
  • Summarizing : When you provide a brief overview of the main points of a source.
  • Using Data or Images : When you incorporate data, statistics, or images from other sources.

Choosing The Right Citation Style – APA, MLA, & Chicago

The words "APA vs MLA vs Chicago" in red and black letters-2

There are several major citation styles, each with its own rules and conventions. The choice of style often depends on the academic discipline or publication requirements. The table below provides a general overview of each (along with some less common ones).

StyleDisciplineExampleYouTube Tutorial
Social Sciences(Smith, 2020, p. 15)
Humanities(Smith 15)
History, Business, Fine Arts(Smith 2020, 15) or footnotes/endnotes
Various(Smith, 2020)
Engineering, Computer Science[1] Smith, J. (2020).  . [Publisher].
Medicine, Biological Sciences[1] Smith J.  .   2020; volume number(issue number): .

APA (American Psychological Association)

APA is ideal for research papers in social sciences (or other works) where the publication date is important. It focuses on the timeliness of the sources. APA is commonly used in social sciences, such as psychology, sociology, education, and business. It emphasizes the date of publication, which is vital in any field where information is frequently updated.

  • APA Format Example : Author(s) name. (Year). Title of the work. Publisher.

MLA (Modern Language Association)

MLA is best used for humanities papers, especially those involving literary analysis. It emphasizes the author and the specific location within the text, which is crucial for detailed textual studies. MLA is often used in works on language and literature.

  • MLA Format Example : Author(s).  Title of the Work . Publisher, Year

Chicago-style stations are suitable for history and the arts, allowing for comprehensive citation through footnotes/endnotes and a bibliography. The Author-Date system, similar to APA, is used in the sciences and social sciences.

It has two systems: Notes and Bibliography and Author-Date.

  • Notes and Bibliography Format Example : Author(s).  Title of the Work . Place of publication: Publisher, Year.
  • Author-Date Format Example : Author(s). Year.  Title of the Work . Place of publication: Publisher.

Different disciplines have preferred citation styles. And it’s not uncommon for journals and publishers to specify a required citation style. Once you choose a style, be consistent throughout your work. You can maintain consistency by adhering to the abovementioned rules for the chosen citation style.

For additional help, consider using some tools. For example, citation generators like Scribbr Citation Generator and reference management software can help maintain consistency. Finally, proofreading your content, where you double-check your citations for accuracy and consistency, is always a good idea.

IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers)

The IEEE citation style is primarily used to reference engineering and computer science sources. It prioritizes clear and concise references for technical fields, allowing readers to find the source material efficiently.

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A key characteristic of the IEEE style is using in-text citations with numbers in square brackets ([1]). These numbers correspond to a numbered reference list at the end of the document, where the full details of each source are provided.

  • IEEE Example Format: Author(s). “Title of the article.”  Publication Name , vol. number, pp. starting-ending page, year.

Vancouver (International Committee of Medical Journal Editors – ICMJE)

The Vancouver citation style is favored in medicine and biological sciences. Like IEEE, it emphasizes clear and concise referencing for medical and scientific publications. In-text citations are also denoted by numbers in square brackets ([1]), which again refer to a numbered reference list at the end of the document.

  • Vancouver Example Format: Author(s). Title of article.  Journal Name  Year; volume number(issue number): page numbers .

How To Write In-Text Citations

In-text citations are like tiny signposts within your writing, guiding your readers to the sources that support your ideas. They ensure you give credit where it’s due and allow readers to explore the references that shaped your work.

Each citation style has its own format for in-text citations. These citations typically include the author’s name and the year of publication, but some styles may also require page numbers. Here’s a quick breakdown of some common styles:

  • APA (American Psychological Association):  (Author, Year, p. Page number)
  • MLA (Modern Language Association):  (Author, Page number)
  • Chicago (Chicago Manual of Style):  (Author, Year, Page number) (or footnotes/endnotes)
  • Harvard:  (Author, Year)

Where you place your in-text citations depends on how you’re using the source:

  • Direct Quotes:  Place the citation immediately after the closing quotation mark, before the punctuation.”This is a direct quote” (Smith, 2020, p. 15).
  • Paraphrased Information:  Place the citation at the end of the paraphrased sentence to indicate the source of the information. Smith (2020) suggests that this is an important consideration.

Handling Special Cases

Here are how you’ll handle some everyday situations that may arise when doing in-text citations, including citing multiple authors, citing without an author, and citing multiple sources simultaneously. Here is what you should know:

  • APA: (Smith, Jones, & Brown, 2020)
  • MLA: (Smith, Jones, and Brown 15)
  • APA: (“Title of the Work,” 2020)
  • MLA: (“Title of the Work” 15)
  • Multiple Sources:  When referencing numerous sources within the same sentence, separate the citations with a semicolon. (Smith, 2020; Jones, 2019)

What Is A Reference List

Your reference list provides full details of all the sources you cited in your work. Think of it as a “Works Cited” section, allowing readers to locate and verify your information. Here’s what you typically include in a reference list entry (depending on the source type):

  • Author(s):  The name(s) of the author(s).
  • Year:  The publication year.
  • Title:  The title of the work (book, article, website, etc.).
  • Source Information:  Where the work was published (e.g., journal name, book publisher, website URL).

A reference list only includes sources you cited in your work. A bibliography, on the other hand, can include all sources you consulted, whether cited or not.

How To Cite Digital Content

 animated phone and computer screens with comment boxes

As you encounter different source types (websites, videos, podcasts, etc.), there are specific ways to format them in your reference list. Many style guides offer online or print resources to help you with these formats, considering they don’t follow the general “author, year, title” format, and some sources require additional details.

Here’s a quick guide:

  • APA:  Smith, J. (2020). Title. Website Name. URL
  • MLA:  Smith, J. “Title.” Website Name, Year. URL
  • APA:  Smith, J. [Username]. (2020). Title [Video/Audio podcast episode]. Platform. URL
  • MLA: Smith, J. “Title.” Platform, uploaded by Username, Year. URL).
  • APA:  Smith, J. (2020). [Personal interview/Lecture notes]. Details
  • MLA:  Smith, J. “Title” [Details]. Year.
  • APA:  Smith, J. [@username] (2020). Text of post [Tweet]. Twitter. URL
  • MLA:  Smith, J [@username]. “Text of post.” Twitter, Year. URL.
  • APA:  Smith, J. (2020) as cited in Jones, M. (2021)
  • MLA:  (qtd. in Jones 2021)).

FAQs Section

The letters "faq" in white, inside of a blue speech bubble on an off white background

Q: How Do I Cite A Source With Multiple Authors?

A: When citing multiple authors in APA , list all authors for sources with up to 20 authors. For more than 20, list the first 19 followed by an ellipsis (…) and the last author’s name.

In MLA citations, list up to two authors. List the first author followed by “et al.”

  • Example: Smith, John, and Mary Jones. or Smith, John, et al.

Q: What Should I Do if I Can’t Find All the Information For A Citation?

A: When you can’t find some of the info you’d usually provide for a given cite, provide as much information as possible. You can also note missing information with “n.d.” (no date) or “n.p.” (no publisher).

A missing author in APA or MLA can be left blank. For Chicago: use brackets “[Author not found]” or describe the work, e.g., “[Newspaper article on climate change].” Use brackets with a description for a missing title, e.g., “[Website about Phyrexian decks].”

Q: How Do I Cite a Source I Found in Another Source?

A: In APA style, you’d cite, for example, Smith (2020) in the text, followed by “as cited in” and then “Jones (2021).” This clarifies that you haven’t directly read Smith’s work. Your reference list would only include Jones (2021) since that’s the source you consulted.

MLA takes a slightly different approach. You’d mention Smith’s work indirectly within the text using the phrase “qtd. in” before citing Jones (2021). This achieves the same purpose as APA’s “as cited in” but uses a specific abbreviation for “quoted in.” However, MLA still doesn’t require you to include Smith’s work in your Works Cited list.

While citing secondary sources can be helpful, consulting the source whenever possible is generally preferred. This ensures you’re getting the most accurate and up-to-date information. However, if the original source is unavailable or obscure, citing secondary sources allows you to incorporate them ethically into your work.

Q: Can I Use Footnotes Instead of In-Text Citations?

A: Styles like APA and MLA rely heavily on in-text citations. These brief parenthetical references within your text point the reader toward a full list of references at the end of your work. It’s a streamlined system that keeps your text flowing.

Chicago style, however, offers more flexibility. It allows you to use footnotes or endnotes instead of in-text citations. Footnotes appear at the bottom of the page where the citation is mentioned. At the same time, endnotes are all grouped at the end of the document before the reference list (or bibliography in Chicago’s terminology).

This approach can be helpful when in-text citations might disrupt the reading experience, such as when you have many references or need to include additional commentary alongside the source information.

So, while APA and MLA keep things concise with in-text citations, Chicago lets you choose between in-text references or more detailed explanations provided through footnotes or endnotes. Ultimately, the best approach depends on the specific requirements of your project and your preferences for readability.

Q: What Is The Difference Between A Reference List And A Bibliography?

A: A reference list is a focused record of the sources you directly cited in your work . Each entry in this list corresponds to an in-text citation, providing the full source details for readers who want to delve deeper. Think of it as a curated selection of the most relevant references that support your arguments and ideas.

On the other hand, a bibliography is more comprehensive. It encompasses the sources you directly cited and any additional resources you consulted during your research, even if they didn’t make it into your final text. This can include books, articles, websites, or unpublished materials that provide background information or help shape your thinking.

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How to avoid excessive citation

  • Faculty / Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences / Learners

By: Sarah-Jean Watt

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Dear Write Site is a series that equips Athabasca University (AU) students with tips and resources to improve their writing—whether it’s for an essay, research paper, or the next great novel. We feature advice from the Write Site , AU’s academic writing support services, with answers to learner questions.

Dear Write Site,

I understand using in-text citations for practising good academic integrity, avoiding plagiarism, and engaging with researchers in my field. However, do I really need to cite every single sentence?

—Citing Exhaustion

Dear Citing Exhaustion,

This is a great question, and it’s absolutely fair to ask. You’re not the only one who has acknowledged the drudgery and clutter of over-citing. That’s why style guides such as APA, MLA, and Chicago often provide strategies for how to avoid the burden of excess citations. Read on to learn about each.

APA’s long paraphrase guidelines

When paraphrasing the same source for multiple sentences in a row in a single paragraph, APA 7 requires that you cite the source in the first paraphrased sentence only. For example:

First mention in a paragraph: According to Jethalal (2022), carbon offsets are a stop-gap method during the search for long-term solutions to climate change.

From there, if you continue paraphrasing the source, you are not required to continually cite it, as long as it is clear that the paraphrase continues. For example, you can use signal phrases to show that your paraphrase is continuing. If you quote the source, be sure to provide a page number or other locator (here, a timestamp).

Subsequent mentions

She notes that behaviour change is important, and carbon offsets are an option until greener technologies emerge.

The interview reveals that critics view offsets as delaying better solutions and giving polluters an easy way out.

However, her argument contends that in the interim, carbon offsets offer “something over nothing” (9:22).

Here is another example of how a paragraph may be organized with signal phrases while using APA’s long paraphrase guidelines:

Yee et al. (2024) studied …

They surveyed …

Participants had to …

The results showed that …

As you can see, by following these guidelines, you do not need to continually include the year after the author’s name, nor do you need to provide a parenthetical citation such as (Jethalal, 2022) at the end of the sentences. Academic writing genres such as annotated bibliographies, reviews, and summaries tend to devote entire paragraphs to one source, and this rule for long paraphrases prevents the clutter of unnecessary citations.

However, you will need to cite the source again if one of the following happens:

  • you cite a different source,
  • you start a new paragraph, or
  • you insert your own analysis.

Also be careful to demonstrate the difference between paraphrases from the source, which should be clearly attributed to the author, and your own thoughts, which should not be attributed to anyone else.

For example:

Differentiating writer’s analysis: For example, consumers, with limited power to influence wider systems, can purchase carbon offsets to reduce the impacts of necessary behaviours, such as the use of natural gas furnaces during sub-zero winters.

Subsequent mentions of the source: However, Jethalal (2022) acknowledges that time is of the essence to develop greener technologies, so how can ordinary citizens contribute?

Interruption by a different source: The title of Greta Thunberg’s (2019) book, No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference, reminds her audience of the schoolchildren’s strike she initiated in 2018.

Subsequent mentions of Thunberg, without interruption: Meanwhile, Thunberg clearly identifies the greenwashing …

Subsequent mentions of Jethalal after interruption: . . . that Jethalal (2022) only hints at.

Here is the passage as a whole:

According to Jethalal (2022), carbon offsets are a stop-gap method during the search for long-term solutions to climate change. She notes that behaviour change is important, and carbon offsets are an option until greener technologies emerge. The interview reveals that critics view offsets as delaying better solutions and giving polluters an easy way out. However, her argument contends that in the interim, carbon offsets offer “something over nothing” (9:22) . For example, consumers, with limited power to influence wider systems, can purchase carbon offsets to reduce the impacts of necessary behaviours, such as the use of natural gas furnaces during sub-zero winters. However, Jethalal (2022) acknowledges that time is of the essence to develop greener technologies, so how can ordinary citizens contribute? The title of Greta Thunberg’s (2019) book, No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference, reminds her audience of the schoolchildren’s strike she initiated in 2018. Meanwhile, Thunberg clearly identifies the greenwashing that Jethalal (2022) only hints at.

MLA’s page numbers only

MLA is the style typically used in literary studies, when multiple references to a single literary text are made, often several times in a row. Fortunately, when citing a single source for an entire paragraph, you do not have to re-cite the author’s name. However, a page number is required to demarcate where each quote or paraphrase came from. The first time you mention a text in a paragraph, identify the author:

First mention in a paragraph: Babbitt’s Tuck Everlasting is not just a child’s adventure story; it questions the meaning of age and lifespan and teases out tensions between adulthood and childhood.

Subsequent references to the author’s text throughout the paragraph may not require a complete citation, but just the page number:

Subsequent mentions: For example, Mae Tuck’s excitement at her grown children’s return seems like a typical mother’s reaction at first glance (9).

Like APA, if other information interrupts the paraphrasing of that source, such as your own analysis of the text or commentary from a secondary source, the source should be re-cited the next time you mention it.

Interruption by analysis: Interestingly, however, Mae’s reaction is also somewhat childlike.

First mention after interruption: This can be seen in her loud repetition of her initial observation that the boys will soon be home (Babbitt 9).

Babbitt’s Tuck Everlasting is not just a child’s adventure story; it questions the meaning of age and lifespan and teases out tensions between adulthood and childhood. For example, Mae Tuck’s excitement at her grown children’s return seems like a typical mother’s reaction at first glance (9) . Interestingly, however, Mae’s reaction is also somewhat childlike. This can be seen in her loud repetition of her initial observation that the boys will soon be home (Babbitt 9) .

Note that MLA 8 allowed the discussion of a source to cross multiple paragraphs without re-citing. However, the above examples reflect updates made in MLA 9, and now this method is contained to one paragraph only. Therefore, be sure to cite the author again the first time you mention their work in a new paragraph:

First mention in a new paragraph: Mae’s husband Tuck at first displays a tiredness that contrasts with Mae’s enthusiasm (Babbitt 9).

See section 6.45 in the MLA Handbook (9th ed.), available from the AU Library , for more information.

Chicago’s shortened notes

Note : For links in this section, you will need to log in with your AU ID.

Unlike APA and MLA, Chicago does not provide a break from citing every sentence . This is because it is used primarily in fields like History where it is necessary to acknowledge where each piece of information came from as the account of the past is formed. Notes, or footnotes, work well for this task, as only a tiny sub-script number is added to the text when a citation is required. Chicago’s Notes/Bibliography (N/B) method uses notes in this way. For example:

Carbon offsets can be viewed as an effective interim solution, but they are only that—an interim solution. 1

However, Chicago makes citing easier by providing guidelines for shortened citations. The first time you use information from a certain source, provide a complete footnote.

Footnote at first mention: 1 Suha Jethalal, “Are Carbon Offsets Really Effective?,” interview by Trinh Theresa Do, Disruptors: The 10-Minute Take , RBC, July 19, 2022, audio, 8:42, https://thoughtleadership.rbc.com/the-10-minute-take-are-carbon-offsets-actually-effective/ .

Subsequently, when referring to that source, you can use a shortened version consisting of the author’s last name, a shortened title, and the page number:

Footnotes at subsequent mentions: 2 Jethalal, “Carbon Offsets,” 6:10.

Or, if you only refer to one source by that author throughout the whole paper, you can leave out the title altogether:

2 Jethalal, 6:10.

A different method works well for papers like literary analyses which contain several references to one source. This method may be more commonly used in Chicago’s Author-Date (A/D) method, though it is technically also permitted in N/B. As long as you continue discussing only that source, all that is required is the relevant page number or other locator in parentheses at the end of the sentence. This shows that you are still referring to the most recently cited source, and it also provides the precise place in the source where the idea can be found:

Babbitt’s younger characters show some adult traits. 1

Footnote with first mention: 1 Natalie Babbitt, Tuck Everlasting (Toronto: Scholastic Inc., 1975), 9.

Subsequent mentions: For example, protagonist Winnie is not a credulous child, with no unlikely hopes for the happily-ever-after of fairy tales (42).

Babbitt’s younger characters show some adult traits. 1 For example, Protagonist Winnie is not a credulous child, with no unlikely hopes for the happily-ever-after of fairy tales (42).

However, double-check with your instructor before you use this method with N/B format , as it is only appropriate in certain situations. If your instructor does not want you to use in-text page numbers, you should continue using footnotes. Also avoid using ibid. unless your instructor asks you to, as Chicago’s latest edition prefers the shortened citation over ibid .

woman reading book in library while writing on a notebook working on citation

Concluding thoughts

Citing correctly is crucial for giving credit where it’s due. However, many style guides acknowledge that repeatedly providing the same source information can be impractical. I encourage you to practise these alternative ways to cite when referring to a single source multiple times. If you’re not sure whether you’re doing it correctly, you can visit the Write Site for support.

The Write Site offers services that support AU students with academic writing. With support from the Write Site’s writing coaches, learners can discuss writing questions and receive feedback about the writing aspects of assignments. Writing coaching is usually most helpful when a learner’s goal is to develop writing skills within the context of course work over time.

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American Psychological Association

A direct quotation reproduces words verbatim from another work or from your own previously published work. It is best to paraphrase sources rather than directly quoting them because paraphrasing allows you to fit material to the context of your paper and writing style.

Use direct quotations rather than paraphrasing:

  • when reproducing an exact definition (see Section 6.22 of the Publication Manual ),
  • when an author has said something memorably or succinctly, or
  • when you want to respond to exact wording (e.g., something someone said).

Instructors, programs, editors, and publishers may establish limits on the use of direct quotations. Consult your instructor or editor if you are concerned that you may have too much quoted material in your paper.

This page addresses how to format short quotations and block quotations. Additional information is available about how to:

  • include page numbers for quotations
  • cite quotations from material without page numbers
  • cite quotations that include errors
  • indicate changes to quotations
  • present quotations from research participants

Quotations are covered in the seventh edition APA Style manuals in the Publication Manual Sections 8.25 to 8.35 and the Concise Guide Sections 8.25 to 8.34

apa paraphrasing in text citation

Related handout

  • In-Text Citation Checklist (PDF, 227KB)

Short quotations (fewer than 40 words)

For quotations of fewer than 40 words, add quotation marks around the words and incorporate the quote into your own text—there is no additional formatting needed. Do not insert an ellipsis at the beginning and/or end of a quotation unless the original source includes an ellipsis.

Effective teams can be difficult to describe because “high performance along one domain does not translate to high performance along another” (Ervin et al., 2018, p. 470).

For a direct quotation, always include a full citation ( parenthetical or narrative ) in the same sentence as the quotation, including the page number (or other location information, e.g., paragraph number).

  • Place a parenthetical citation either immediately after the quotation or at the end of the sentence.
  • For a narrative citation, include the author and year in the sentence and then place the page number or other location information in parentheses after the quotation.
  • If the quotation precedes the narrative citation, put the page number or location information after the year and a comma.
  • If the citation appears at the end of a sentence, put the end punctuation after the closing parenthesis for the citation.
  • If the quotation includes citations, see Section 8.32 of the Publication Manual .
  • If the quotation includes material already in quotation marks, see Section 8.33 of the Publication Manual .
  • Place periods and commas within closing single or double quotation marks. Place other punctuation marks inside quotation marks only when they are part of the quoted material.

Block quotations (40 words or more)

Format quotations of 40 words or more as block quotations:

  • Do not use quotation marks to enclose a block quotation.
  • Start a block quotation on a new line and indent the whole block 0.5 in. from the left margin.
  • Double-space the entire block quotation.
  • Do not add extra space before or after it.
  • If there are additional paragraphs within the quotation, indent the first line of each subsequent paragraph an additional 0.5 in. See an example in Section 8.27 of the Publication Manual .
  • Either (a) cite the source in parentheses after the quotation’s final punctuation or (b) cite the author and year in the narrative before the quotation and place only the page number in parentheses after the quotation’s final punctuation.
  • Do not add a period after the closing parenthesis in either case.

Block quotation with parenthetical citation:

Researchers have studied how people talk to themselves:

Inner speech is a paradoxical phenomenon. It is an experience that is central to many people’s everyday lives, and yet it presents considerable challenges to any effort to study it scientifically. Nevertheless, a wide range of methodologies and approaches have combined to shed light on the subjective experience of inner speech and its cognitive and neural underpinnings. (Alderson-Day & Fernyhough, 2015, p. 957)

Block quotation with narrative citation:

Flores et al. (2018) described how they addressed potential researcher bias when working with an intersectional community of transgender people of color:

Everyone on the research team belonged to a stigmatized group but also held privileged identities. Throughout the research process, we attended to the ways in which our privileged and oppressed identities may have influenced the research process, findings, and presentation of results. (p. 311)

Learn the Standard Essay Format: MLA, APA, Chicago Styles

With modern technologies, students have a lot of tools that can assist them in meeting academic writing requirements. A student may entrust their assignment to an essay writing service and get a professional writer who will complete a customized paper for them or use free online tools like citation generators or an AI checker essay . These can help the student meet certain needs, like creating citations, a reference list for a college paper, and checking a paper for plagiarism and AI-generated content.

In this article, we will cover one of the trickiest issues every student faces in college: What is an essay format? How to use formatting styles, and what are their requirements?

Essay formats and their particularities: APA, MLA, Chicago

There are three frequently used formatting styles that you may need to follow when working on your academic paper. These are APA, MLA, and Chicago. Let’s take a look at each format essay and figure out how to apply every alternative in your papers. 

APA essay format

APA style is a standard essay format for social sciences such as psychology, education, and sociology. It provides clarity, precision, and the importance of data and research. If you need a detailed guide on how to write an essay in APA format , the “Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association” is what you need. It provides comprehensive rules for formatting college papers, citing sources, and structuring your content.

Here are the key requirements for the APA essay format that you have to follow in your writing:

  • Font : 12-point Times New Roman
  • Spacing : Double-spaced
  • Margins : 1 inch on all sides
  • Header : Title with a page number on the right
  • Title page : Topic of the paper, author’s name, institution affiliation, course number and name, instructor’s name, due date
  • Abstract : A brief summary (about 150-250 words)
  • Main body : Introduction, Method, Results, Discussion
  • In-text citations : Author’s last name, year, p. page number . Example : Johnson, 2018, p. 111
  • References page : The “References” title centered at the top of the page, with entries in alphabetical order by author’s last name, double-spaced, with a hanging indent

MLA (Modern Language Association) essay format

MLA essay formatting is usually used in the humanities. Students are mostly assigned to use this formatting style when working on papers in language disciplines or literature. The MLA style provides the authorship of sources, facilitating clarity and consistency in citation and documentation. The MLA style is perfectly detailed in the MLA Handbook. There, you can find guidelines on how to format papers, cite sources properly, and omit any sign of plagiarism.

If you are searching for guidelines on how to write a diagnostic essay or any other college paper in the MLA formatting style, here are the instructions to follow:

  • Header : Last name and page number in the top right corner
  • Title : Centered, standard capitalization, NOT bolded or underlined
  • Title Page : Not typically required
  • The first page : Student’s name, instructor’s name, course, date
  • In-Text Citations : (Author’s Last Name Page Number) Example : (Smith 123)
  • References page : The “Works Cited” title centered at the top of the page, with entries in alphabetical order by author’s last name, double-spaced, with a hanging indent

Chicago essay format

Chicago formatting is widely used for college papers in various disciplines, like history, the arts, sciences, etc. Consult The Chicago Manual of Style if you need detailed instructions on how to use this formatting style in writing. The Chicago formatting style offers two central documentation systems. The first one is Notes and Bibliography, which is commonly used in the humanities. The second one is Author-Date, which is preferred in the sciences and social sciences. The Notes and Bibliography system is well-known for its detailed footnotes or endnotes and comprehensive bibliography.

If you have no idea how to write an argumentative essay using the Chicago formatting style, here are the guidelines to follow:

  • Header : Page number in the top right corner
  • Title page : Topic of the paper, author’s name, course information, date
  • Main body : Typically divided into sections as needed
  • Footnotes/Endnotes : Superscript number in the text, with corresponding note at the bottom of the page or end of the paper. Example : Smith argues that this was not the case.¹ Corresponding footnote : ¹ John Smith, Title of Book (Publisher, Year), page number.
  • Bibliography page : The “Bibliography” title centered at the top of the page, with entries in alphabetical order by author’s last name, single-spaced within entries, double-spaced between entries, with a hanging indent.

The checklist to make sure you have met all essay format requirements

When your paper is complete, it is very important to make sure you have done everything properly. Grab this checklist and make sure you have formatted your essay correctly and haven’t missed anything important.

Margins and spacing
Does your paper have 1-inch margins on all sides?Is the entire paper double-spaced?
Font
Is the paper written in Times New Roman, a 12-point font for the entire text?
Headers and page numbers
: Are there your last name and page number in the top right corner of each page of your paper? : Are there the title of your paper and the page number on the right? : Is there a page number in the top right corner of each page of your paper?
Title page
: Are your name, instructor’s name, course, and date on the first page? Is the topic of your paper centered? : Does your title page include the title of the paper, your name, institution affiliation, course number and name, instructor’s name, and due date? : Does your title page include the title of the paper, your name, course information, and the date?
In-text citations
: Are there the author’s last name and page number in parentheses after quotations or paraphrased text (e.g., (Miller 111))? : Are there the author’s last name, year of publication, and page number in parentheses after quotations or paraphrased text (e.g., (Miller, 2000, p. 111))? : Are there superscript numbers in the text and corresponding footnotes or endnotes with citations?
References page
: Is your references page titled “Works Cited,” centered at the top of a new page, with entries in alphabetical order, double-spaced, and with a hanging indent? : Is your references page titled “References,” centered at the top of a new page, with entries in alphabetical order, double-spaced, and with a hanging indent? : Is your references page titled “Bibliography,” centered at the top of a new page, with entries in alphabetical order, single-spaced within entries, double-spaced between entries, and with a hanging indent?
Quotations and paraphrasing
Have you correctly formatted quotations, using quotation marks for direct quotes and proper in-text citations for both direct quotes and paraphrased information?
Accuracy
Do all citations in the text correspond to entries in your Works Cited/References/Bibliography page? Are all the entries appropriately formatted?
Section headings (if applicable)
: Have you used proper headings and subheadings to organize your paper according to APA guidelines (centered, bolded headings for main sections)? : If using subheadings, are they consistent and properly formatted?

The last step is, of course, to proofread your essay and ensure that it meets all your instructor’s requirements. If you have checked it thoroughly, then you are ready to hand it in. 

Format essay: Other formatting styles you may have to follow in academic writing

Of course, there are other formatting styles than APA, MLA, and Chicago. Let’s take a quick look at other essay formats you can face when working on a college paper. 

  • Harvard . This is a basic essay format for social sciences. It uses an author-date citation system similar to APA but has some formatting differences.
  • Turabian . This is a simplified version of the Chicago style. It is well-known for being required for writing academic papers, theses, and dissertations.
  • IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers). This particular formatting style is used predominantly in technical fields like engineering and computer science. This formatting style uses a numerical citation system. 
  • AMA (American Medical Association). This formatting style is often used in medical and health-related fields. It uses a numerical citation system with superscript numbers.
  • Vancouver . This formatting style is usually used in biomedical and physical sciences. It includes a numerical citation system with citations in parentheses.
  • CSE (Council of Science Editors). This formatting style can often be met in natural sciences. It offers three systems: Citation-Sequence, Name-Year, and Citation-Name.
  • ASA (American Sociological Association). ASA formatting style is primarily used in sociology. It has a lot of similarities with the APA formatting style but has specific differences for sociological research. 
  • APSA (American Political Science Association). As can be comprehended from the name of the formatting style, it is often used in political science papers. This formatting style is based on the Chicago style but has some specific guidelines for political science.

Students face many issues on their way to getting a degree, and writing college papers takes a great deal of effort and time. Some learners have no idea how to write a narrative essay , spending hours searching for reliable information to help them handle the task. Others do not have enough experience in different formatting styles and seek assistance from various sources. And, of course, every college learner wants to research the topic to the fullest in order to get a good mark. 

We hope this article will come in handy when you need to write a college essay using a specific formatting style, and you will succeed.

Being a student, you have to handle a lot of writing assignments, follow various academic writing standards, and hand in your papers on time. Of course, writing assignments takes a lot of time and effort. On the one hand, students have to research topics profoundly and compose their papers on a research basis. On the other hand, students have to pay close attention to instructors’ requirements and academic standards.

TFor some students, it is no problem to research different issues because they usually choose the ones that interest them, but it could be a real trouble to meet all the formatting requirements. They often question how to write a book title in an essay , cite sources correctly, and write an essay in a particular formatting style.

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How to cite in MLA format

MLA handbook 9th edition

MLA is one of the most common citation styles used by students and academics. This quick guide explains how to cite sources according to the 9th edition (the most recent) of the MLA Handbook . You can also use Scribbr’s free  citation generator to automatically generate references and in-text citations.

An MLA citation has two components:

  • In-text citation : Every time you quote or paraphrase a source, you cite the author and the page number in parentheses.
  • Works Cited : At the end of your paper, you give a full reference for every source you cited, alphabetized by the author’s last name.

MLA Works Cited list

The list of Works Cited (also known as the bibliography or reference page) gives full details of every source you cited in your text. Each entry is built from nine core elements:

Following this format, you can create a citation for any type of source—for example, a book , journal article , website , or movie . You only include information that’s relevant to the type of source you’re citing.

Missing information in MLA citations

Regardless of the source type, the most important elements of any MLA citation are the author , the source title , and the publication date. If any of these are missing from the source, the Works Cited entry will look slightly different.

What’s missing?What to doWorks Cited example
No authorStart with the source title instead. Alphabetize by the first word (ignoring ).“Australia fires: ‘Catastrophic’ alerts in South Australia and Victoria.” , 20 Nov. 2019, www.bbc.com/­news/­world-­australia-­50483410.
No titleGive a brief description of the source. Use sentence case and no italics or quotation marks.Mackintosh, Charles Rennie. Chair of stained oak. 1897–1900, Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
No dateLeave out the publication date. Add the date you accessed the source at the end of the citation.“Who are Scribbr Editors?” , www.scribbr.com/­about-­us/­editors/. Accessed 10 June 2019.

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MLA in-text citations

MLA in-text citations are brief references that direct your reader to the full source entry. You include them every time you quote , block quote , paraphrase or summarize a source.

The in-text citation must match the first word of the Works Cited entry—usually the author’s last name . It also includes a page number or range to help the reader locate the relevant passage.

AuthorWhat to doCitation example
1 authorGive the author’s last name.(Wallace 11–12)
2 authorsGive both author’s last names.(Wallace and Armstrong 11–12)
3+ authorsName the first author followed by “et al.”(Wallace et al. 11–12)
Corporate authorIf a source was created by an organization other than the publisher, use the organization name as author.(U.S. Global Change Research Program 22)
No authorIf the author is the same as the publisher, or if no author is credited, use the source title instead. Format the title the same as in the full Works Cited reference, and shorten if it is more than four words.(“Australia Fires”)
Multiple sources by the same authorInclude the title (or a shortened version) after the author’s name in each source citation.(Morrison, , 73)
(Morrison, , 45)

If you already named the author in your sentence, include only the page number in parentheses:

Sources with no page numbers

If the source has no page numbers, you either use an alternative locator, or leave the page number out of the citation:

Source typeWhat to doCitation example
Audiovisual source (e.g. a or )Give the time range of the relevant section.(Arnold 03:15–03:21).
Source with numbered sections (e.g. an )Give a paragraph, section, or chapter number.(Smith, par. 38)
(Rowling, ch. 6)
Source with no numbered sections (e.g. a )Leave out the page number.(Barker)

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  1. paraphrasing apa citation example

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  2. How to Paraphrase in APA and MLA: Full Guide to Scoring High

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    apa paraphrasing in text citation

  4. Paraphrasing, citing in-text APA 7th

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  6. How to Use APA Citing and Paraphrasing to

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VIDEO

  1. Paraphrasing 101

  2. INTRODUCTION TO APA IN-TEXT CITATION

  3. How to Cite Sources in APA Style

  4. IN-TEXT CITATION, AN IMPORTANT REQUIREMENT OF APA

  5. APA: Paraphrasing Sources

  6. PHIL 1301 Citation, Paraphrase, and Plagiarism

COMMENTS

  1. Paraphrases

    Learn how to paraphrase sources in your own words and cite them using APA style. Find examples of long and short paraphrases, citation formats, and tips for avoiding plagiarism.

  2. In-Text Citations: The Basics

    When using APA format, 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, like, for example, (Jones, 1998). One complete reference for each source should appear in the reference list at the end of the paper.

  3. PDF Paraphrasing and Citation Activities, APA Style 7th Edition

    Activity 1: Paraphrasing One Sentence. This activity consists of three steps: Read the following published sentence and then paraphrase it—that is, rewrite it in your own words. You do not need to repeat every element. Instead, try changing the focus of the sentence while preserving the meaning of the original.

  4. APA Citation Style, 7th Edition: In-Text Citations & Paraphrasing

    Let's look at these examples if they were written in text: An example with 1 author: Parenthetical citation: Following American Psychological Association (APA) style guidelines will help you to cultivate your own unique academic voice as an expert in your field (Forbes, 2020). Narrative citation: Forbes (2020) shared that by following American Psychological Association (APA) guidelines ...

  5. Paraphrasing in APA

    5. Include an APA in-text citation. Even though you are putting a paraphrase into your own words, APA requires an in-text citation for paraphrasing. You can create a parenthetical citation or a narrative citation to accomplish this. Remember: All in-text citations will also need a corresponding APA reference in the APA reference page. For this ...

  6. PDF APA 7

    Quotations that Contain Citations to Other Works (APA, 2020, p. 276) Try to avoid quoting material that contains citations to other works if possible. Paraphrase instead, or quote shorter phrases that leave out the part with the citation. Or if necessary: • When quoting material that contains embedded in-text citations, include the in-text

  7. APA Citation Guide (7th edition): Quotes vs Paraphrases

    Quoting is copying a selection from someone else's work, phrasing it exactly as it was originally written. When quoting place quotation marks (" ") around the selected passage to show where the quote begins and where it ends. Make sure to include an in-text citation. Paraphrasing is used to show that you understand what the author wrote.

  8. PDF 7th Edition In-Text Citation Checklist

    For any uncited works, either cite them in the text or remove the entries from the reference list. More information on in-text citation can be found in Chapter 8 of both the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.) and the Concise Guide to APA Style (7th ed.). Reference examples appear in Chapter 10.

  9. APA In-Text Citations (7th Ed.)

    In-text citations briefly identify the source of information in the body text. They correspond to a full reference entry at the end of your paper. APA in-text citations consist of the author's last name and publication year. When citing a specific part of a source, also include a page number or range, for example (Parker, 2020, p.

  10. Paraphrasing

    When you write information from a source in your own words, cite the source by adding an in-text citation at the end of the paraphrased portion as follows: Mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research following the publication of John Bowlby's studies (Hunt, 1993).

  11. Citations

    In APA, in-text citations are inserted in the body of your research paper to briefly document the source of your information. Brief in-text citations point the reader to the full citation on the References list at the end of the paper. Create in-text citations for the following: Direct quotes; Paraphrasing

  12. Citations for Paraphrased Sources

    APA In-Text Citation Examples. Citations for Paraphrased Sources ; Citing Direct Quotations ... paraphrase a source you need to include an in-text citation for that source using either the narrative or parenthetical citation formats. Unsure how to paraphrase? Check out the video below from Academic Support. Page Numbers. Page numbers are not ...

  13. APA Citation Guide (7th Edition): Paraphrasing

    When you write information from a source in your own words, cite the source by adding an in-text citation at the end of the paraphrased portion as follows: Mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research following the publication of John Bowlby's studies (Hunt, 1993). Note: If you refer to the author's name in a ...

  14. The Basics of In-Text Citation

    Example: Paraphrase with APA Style in-text citation The evolutionary process consists of a series of incremental changes over a long period of time (Darwin, 1859, p. 510). However, to avoid over-citation, bear in mind that some information is considered common knowledge and doesn't need to be cited. For example, you don't need a citation to ...

  15. In-Text Citations, Paraphrasing and Quoting

    Let's look at these examples if they were written in text: An example with 1 author: Parenthetical citation: Following American Psychological Association (APA) style guidelines will help you to cultivate your own unique academic voice as an expert in your field (Forbes, 2020). Narrative citation: Forbes (2020) shared that by following American Psychological Association (APA) guidelines ...

  16. In-Text Citations and Paraphrasing

    APA Style Guide: In-Text Citations and Paraphrasing. This guide is a resource for preparing papers according to the rules of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. ... 2001), business students were more likely to use the APA format in writing papers. Discussing the same source multiple times in a paragraph.

  17. In-text Citation: Indirect Quote (Paraphrase) Basics

    Indirect Quotation, or Paraphrase, refers to putting an author's ideas into your own words in your paper. Like direct quotes, the paraphrased passages require in-text citations in order to give credit to the original author. The APA Publication Guide states that sources should be paraphrased most of the time instead of using direct quotes (8.23).

  18. Paraphrasing

    6 Steps to Effective Paraphrasing. Reread the original passage until you understand its full meaning. Set the original aside, and write your paraphrase on a note card. Jot down a few words below your paraphrase to remind you later how you envision using this material. At the top of the note card, write a key word or phrase to indicate the ...

  19. In-text citations

    APA Style provides guidelines to help writers determine the appropriate level of citation and how to avoid plagiarism and self-plagiarism. We also provide specific guidance for in-text citation, including formats for interviews, classroom and intranet sources, and personal communications; in-text citations in general; and paraphrases and direct quotations.

  20. Library Guides: APA Quick Citation Guide: In-text Citation

    Using In-text Citation. Include an in-text citation when you refer to, summarize, paraphrase, or quote from another source. For every in-text citation in your paper, there must be a corresponding entry in your reference list. APA in-text citation style uses the author's last name and the year of publication, for example: (Field, 2005).

  21. LibGuides: APA Citation Guide (7th edition) : Paraphrasing

    Paraphrasing. When you write information from a source in your own words, cite the source by adding an in-text citation at the end of the paraphrased portion as follows: Mother-infant attachment became a leading topic of developmental research following the publication of John Bowlby's studies (Hunt, 1993). Note: If you refer to the author's ...

  22. Citation Machine®: APA Format & APA Citation Generator

    An APA in-text citation is included in research projects in three instances: When using a direct quote, paraphrasing information, or simply referring to a piece of information from another source. Quite often, researchers and scholars use a small amount of text, word for word, from another source and include it in their own research projects.

  23. Cite sources in APA

    Paraphrasing: APA requires that, with paraphrasing, the author and year of publication be included in the in-text citation. The inclusion of the page number is not required but is encouraged. Muddiman (1995) points out that with new emerging technologies there is a shift from knowledge to skills within librarianship.

  24. How To Do Citations

    Paraphrased Information: Place the citation at the end of the paraphrased sentence to indicate the source of the information. Smith (2020) suggests that this is an important consideration. ... No Author: If there's no author listed, use the title of the work or the first few words of the title in your in-text citation. APA: ("Title of the ...

  25. How to avoid excessive citation

    When paraphrasing the same source for multiple sentences in a row in a single paragraph, APA 7 requires that you cite the source in the first paraphrased sentence only. For example: First mention in a paragraph: According to Jethalal (2022), carbon offsets are a stop-gap method during the search for long-term solutions to climate change. From there, if you continue paraphrasing the source, you ...

  26. Quotations

    when reproducing an exact definition (see Section 6.22 of the Publication Manual ), when an author has said something memorably or succinctly, or. when you want to respond to exact wording (e.g., something someone said). Instructors, programs, editors, and publishers may establish limits on the use of direct quotations.

  27. Essay Formats

    In-text citations (MLA): Are there the author's last name and page number in parentheses after quotations or paraphrased text (e.g., (Miller 111))?(APA): Are there the author's last name, year of publication, and page number in parentheses after quotations or paraphrased text (e.g., (Miller, 2000, p. 111))?

  28. Free MLA Citation Generator

    MLA in-text citations. MLA in-text citations are brief references that direct your reader to the full source entry. You include them every time you quote, block quote, paraphrase or summarize a source. The in-text citation must match the first word of the Works Cited entry—usually the author's last name.