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Citing a Website Article (APA)

Format:   Author(s). (Year, Month Day).  Title of article in italics . Website Name. URL 

Note: Cite an online source as a website only if no other type of source applies to it. For instance, many magazines and newspapers publish articles on their websites - in cases like this, you would cite the article as if it were an online magazines or newspaper article (not a website article). This holds true for journal articles, conference procedures, social media posts, blog posts, online videos, etc. You may need to check the APA manual or ask a librarian to see if your type of source is listed.

Note : If you're citing multiple articles or webpage from the same website, then create a reference entry for each one.

Note : If you're just mentioning a website in general but not actually pulling any specific information from it, do not created a reference list entry or use an in-text citation. Simply include the name of the website in the text of your paper, and list the URL in parenthesis after the name. For instance, the the Centers for Disease Control website (https://www.cdc.gov/) provides information on vaccines. If you pulled specific information from the website, then cite each page that you pulled information from as it's own reference entry (see note above).

Example:   Harrar, S. (2007, July 5).  Better heart health . CNN. http://cnn.com/better-heart-201562 

Example: Smith , J. D. (2002-2023). The secret to a long life . American Cancer Society. http://americancancersociety.com/secret-long-life-356892

Group Author:   Mayo Clinic. (2011, June 23).  Absence seizure . http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/201569 

Access Date: Smith, J. D. (n.d.). Considerations for new nurses. Career Spot. Retrieved July 3, 2023, from https://www.careerspot.org/nursing213659/

Government: National Cancer Institute . (2020). Lung cancer update (NIH Publication No. 20-6548). U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health. https://www.cancer.gov/lungcancer206528/

Note : When using a government website with many layers of agencies, use the most specific agency as the author, then list the name(s) of the parent agencies as the website name, beginning with the biggest agency/parent agency and working towards more specific separating with commas (i.e. The White House, Office of the Press Secretary). Do no repeat agencies in the that were used as the author.

Helpful Information

For the website article title, capitalize only proper nouns and the first word of the article title and subtitle. Also italicize the website article title (APA considers it a standalone).

For the website name, capitalize all the significant words in the title. Do not use italics or quotation marks.

Note: If you mention a Website article title in your paper, all major words should be capitalized and it should be in italics.

When author and website name are the same, skip the website name (to avoid repetition).

Do not put a period at the end of entries with a URL.

For the URL, put the exact link to content or page where reader can easily find the cited material. For example, use https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/28/us/politics/william-barr-house-judiciary-hearing.html?action=click&module=Top%20Stories&pgtype=Homepage instead of https://www.nytimes.com.

Some works online note last updated or edited or revised date, you would use this date if listed. If lists last reviewed as the date, you would not use as the content was not necessarily changed when reviewed. You can use copyright date(s) if exist and there is not a last updated/edited/revised date. If the website has no specific date (year or no date), but will not change over time such as an edition of a report or ebook for instance then no retrieval date is needed. Include a retrieval date only if source material could change over time like a webpage or non-published article with just year (2023) or  (n.d.). See example above.

Formatting:

Double space entries. If an entry runs more than one line, use hanging indent the next line(s).

Helpful Resources

  • Where to Find Citation Information on a Website This interactive guide will show you where on a website you can find the information needed to complete your citation.
  • How to Cite a Website Article in APA Format This handout will break down how to cite a website article in APA format.
  • << Previous: Citing Interviews, Emails, etc.
  • Next: Citing a Video >>
  • Formatting the Author & Title
  • Citing a Book or Ebook
  • Citing Part of a Book or Ebook
  • Citing an Encyclopedia
  • Citing a Journal Article
  • Citing an Article Written for a Database
  • Citing a Magazine or Newspaper Article
  • Citing Interviews, Emails, etc.
  • Citing a Video
  • Citing Images in a Project
  • In-text Citations
  • Annotated Bibliography - APA
  • Formatting Your Title Page and Paper in Word
  • Formatting Your Reference Page in Word
  • APA Handouts
  • More APA Resources
  • APA Workshop (Mar. 2022)

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Home / Guides / Citation Guides / How to Cite Sources

How to Cite Sources

Here is a complete list for how to cite sources. Most of these guides present citation guidance and examples in MLA, APA, and Chicago.

If you’re looking for general information on MLA or APA citations , the EasyBib Writing Center was designed for you! It has articles on what’s needed in an MLA in-text citation , how to format an APA paper, what an MLA annotated bibliography is, making an MLA works cited page, and much more!

MLA Format Citation Examples

The Modern Language Association created the MLA Style, currently in its 9th edition, to provide researchers with guidelines for writing and documenting scholarly borrowings.  Most often used in the humanities, MLA style (or MLA format ) has been adopted and used by numerous other disciplines, in multiple parts of the world.

MLA provides standard rules to follow so that most research papers are formatted in a similar manner. This makes it easier for readers to comprehend the information. The MLA in-text citation guidelines, MLA works cited standards, and MLA annotated bibliography instructions provide scholars with the information they need to properly cite sources in their research papers, articles, and assignments.

  • Book Chapter
  • Conference Paper
  • Documentary
  • Encyclopedia
  • Google Images
  • Kindle Book
  • Memorial Inscription
  • Museum Exhibit
  • Painting or Artwork
  • PowerPoint Presentation
  • Sheet Music
  • Thesis or Dissertation
  • YouTube Video

APA Format Citation Examples

The American Psychological Association created the APA citation style in 1929 as a way to help psychologists, anthropologists, and even business managers establish one common way to cite sources and present content.

APA is used when citing sources for academic articles such as journals, and is intended to help readers better comprehend content, and to avoid language bias wherever possible. The APA style (or APA format ) is now in its 7th edition, and provides citation style guides for virtually any type of resource.

Chicago Style Citation Examples

The Chicago/Turabian style of citing sources is generally used when citing sources for humanities papers, and is best known for its requirement that writers place bibliographic citations at the bottom of a page (in Chicago-format footnotes ) or at the end of a paper (endnotes).

The Turabian and Chicago citation styles are almost identical, but the Turabian style is geared towards student published papers such as theses and dissertations, while the Chicago style provides guidelines for all types of publications. This is why you’ll commonly see Chicago style and Turabian style presented together. The Chicago Manual of Style is currently in its 17th edition, and Turabian’s A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations is in its 8th edition.

Citing Specific Sources or Events

  • Declaration of Independence
  • Gettysburg Address
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Speech
  • President Obama’s Farewell Address
  • President Trump’s Inauguration Speech
  • White House Press Briefing

Additional FAQs

  • Citing Archived Contributors
  • Citing a Blog
  • Citing a Book Chapter
  • Citing a Source in a Foreign Language
  • Citing an Image
  • Citing a Song
  • Citing Special Contributors
  • Citing a Translated Article
  • Citing a Tweet

6 Interesting Citation Facts

The world of citations may seem cut and dry, but there’s more to them than just specific capitalization rules, MLA in-text citations , and other formatting specifications. Citations have been helping researches document their sources for hundreds of years, and are a great way to learn more about a particular subject area.

Ever wonder what sets all the different styles apart, or how they came to be in the first place? Read on for some interesting facts about citations!

1. There are Over 7,000 Different Citation Styles

You may be familiar with MLA and APA citation styles, but there are actually thousands of citation styles used for all different academic disciplines all across the world. Deciding which one to use can be difficult, so be sure to ask you instructor which one you should be using for your next paper.

2. Some Citation Styles are Named After People

While a majority of citation styles are named for the specific organizations that publish them (i.e. APA is published by the American Psychological Association, and MLA format is named for the Modern Language Association), some are actually named after individuals. The most well-known example of this is perhaps Turabian style, named for Kate L. Turabian, an American educator and writer. She developed this style as a condensed version of the Chicago Manual of Style in order to present a more concise set of rules to students.

3. There are Some Really Specific and Uniquely Named Citation Styles

How specific can citation styles get? The answer is very. For example, the “Flavour and Fragrance Journal” style is based on a bimonthly, peer-reviewed scientific journal published since 1985 by John Wiley & Sons. It publishes original research articles, reviews and special reports on all aspects of flavor and fragrance. Another example is “Nordic Pulp and Paper Research,” a style used by an international scientific magazine covering science and technology for the areas of wood or bio-mass constituents.

4. More citations were created on  EasyBib.com  in the first quarter of 2018 than there are people in California.

The US Census Bureau estimates that approximately 39.5 million people live in the state of California. Meanwhile, about 43 million citations were made on EasyBib from January to March of 2018. That’s a lot of citations.

5. “Citations” is a Word With a Long History

The word “citations” can be traced back literally thousands of years to the Latin word “citare” meaning “to summon, urge, call; put in sudden motion, call forward; rouse, excite.” The word then took on its more modern meaning and relevance to writing papers in the 1600s, where it became known as the “act of citing or quoting a passage from a book, etc.”

6. Citation Styles are Always Changing

The concept of citations always stays the same. It is a means of preventing plagiarism and demonstrating where you relied on outside sources. The specific style rules, however, can and do change regularly. For example, in 2018 alone, 46 new citation styles were introduced , and 106 updates were made to exiting styles. At EasyBib, we are always on the lookout for ways to improve our styles and opportunities to add new ones to our list.

Why Citations Matter

Here are the ways accurate citations can help your students achieve academic success, and how you can answer the dreaded question, “why should I cite my sources?”

They Give Credit to the Right People

Citing their sources makes sure that the reader can differentiate the student’s original thoughts from those of other researchers. Not only does this make sure that the sources they use receive proper credit for their work, it ensures that the student receives deserved recognition for their unique contributions to the topic. Whether the student is citing in MLA format , APA format , or any other style, citations serve as a natural way to place a student’s work in the broader context of the subject area, and serve as an easy way to gauge their commitment to the project.

They Provide Hard Evidence of Ideas

Having many citations from a wide variety of sources related to their idea means that the student is working on a well-researched and respected subject. Citing sources that back up their claim creates room for fact-checking and further research . And, if they can cite a few sources that have the converse opinion or idea, and then demonstrate to the reader why they believe that that viewpoint is wrong by again citing credible sources, the student is well on their way to winning over the reader and cementing their point of view.

They Promote Originality and Prevent Plagiarism

The point of research projects is not to regurgitate information that can already be found elsewhere. We have Google for that! What the student’s project should aim to do is promote an original idea or a spin on an existing idea, and use reliable sources to promote that idea. Copying or directly referencing a source without proper citation can lead to not only a poor grade, but accusations of academic dishonesty. By citing their sources regularly and accurately, students can easily avoid the trap of plagiarism , and promote further research on their topic.

They Create Better Researchers

By researching sources to back up and promote their ideas, students are becoming better researchers without even knowing it! Each time a new source is read or researched, the student is becoming more engaged with the project and is developing a deeper understanding of the subject area. Proper citations demonstrate a breadth of the student’s reading and dedication to the project itself. By creating citations, students are compelled to make connections between their sources and discern research patterns. Each time they complete this process, they are helping themselves become better researchers and writers overall.

When is the Right Time to Start Making Citations?

Make in-text/parenthetical citations as you need them.

As you are writing your paper, be sure to include references within the text that correspond with references in a works cited or bibliography. These are usually called in-text citations or parenthetical citations in MLA and APA formats. The most effective time to complete these is directly after you have made your reference to another source. For instance, after writing the line from Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities : “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…,” you would include a citation like this (depending on your chosen citation style):

(Dickens 11).

This signals to the reader that you have referenced an outside source. What’s great about this system is that the in-text citations serve as a natural list for all of the citations you have made in your paper, which will make completing the works cited page a whole lot easier. After you are done writing, all that will be left for you to do is scan your paper for these references, and then build a works cited page that includes a citation for each one.

Need help creating an MLA works cited page ? Try the MLA format generator on EasyBib.com! We also have a guide on how to format an APA reference page .

2. Understand the General Formatting Rules of Your Citation Style Before You Start Writing

While reading up on paper formatting may not sound exciting, being aware of how your paper should look early on in the paper writing process is super important. Citation styles can dictate more than just the appearance of the citations themselves, but rather can impact the layout of your paper as a whole, with specific guidelines concerning margin width, title treatment, and even font size and spacing. Knowing how to organize your paper before you start writing will ensure that you do not receive a low grade for something as trivial as forgetting a hanging indent.

Don’t know where to start? Here’s a formatting guide on APA format .

3. Double-check All of Your Outside Sources for Relevance and Trustworthiness First

Collecting outside sources that support your research and specific topic is a critical step in writing an effective paper. But before you run to the library and grab the first 20 books you can lay your hands on, keep in mind that selecting a source to include in your paper should not be taken lightly. Before you proceed with using it to backup your ideas, run a quick Internet search for it and see if other scholars in your field have written about it as well. Check to see if there are book reviews about it or peer accolades. If you spot something that seems off to you, you may want to consider leaving it out of your work. Doing this before your start making citations can save you a ton of time in the long run.

Finished with your paper? It may be time to run it through a grammar and plagiarism checker , like the one offered by EasyBib Plus. If you’re just looking to brush up on the basics, our grammar guides  are ready anytime you are.

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Citing websites & online media: APA (7th ed.) citation guide

On this page, online media, webpages or website.

how to cite a website in research paper

This guide is based on the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th ed. It provides selected citation examples for common types of sources. For more detailed information consult directly a  print copy  of the style manual.

Check out APA's Guide to what's new for APA 7 .

Keep track of your document references/citations and format your reference lists easily with Citation management software .

For citing blog posts see citing articles in our guide.

Refer to APA's Online media for more reference examples and information or consult the guide directly (Section 10.15, pp. 348-349). 

Facebook, Tumblr, LinkedIn, & Reddit

Author, A. A. (YYYY, Month day). Content of the post up to 20 words . Site Name. URL

Reference list example

National Institute of Mental Health. (2020, September 14). Suicide is complicated and tragic, but is often preventable. Knowing the warning signs for suicide and how to get help [Infographic]. Facebook. https://bit.ly/3kkBF5v

Reference in text example

(National Institute of Mental Health [NIMH], 2020)--[group name first appears in parenthetical citation] (NIMH, 2020) [subsequent use]

  • Author can be the name of a group.
  • Find more style guidelines when abbreviating the name of a group on APA's Group author abbreviations or directly consult the guide (Section 8.2, p. 268).
  • Note any audiovisuals in square brackets [Infographic] after content element.
  • Do not alter the spelling and capitalization in posts. Keep hashtags and links.
  • Provide emoji's name in square brackets if unable to to replicate, for example [winking face]. Refer to Unicode Emoji Charts for emoji names. An emoji counts as one word.
  •  If no published date available, use (n.d.).

Twitter & Instagram

Author, A. A. [@username). (YYYY, Month day). Content of the post up to the first 20 words . Site Name. URL

SFU Library (@sfu_library). (2020, September 10). Join us on Sept 22 for the first of our Fall series of hands-on, interactive, online Knowledge Mobilization workshops! [Tweet]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/sfu_library/status/1303814348775673856?s=21

(SFU Library, 2020)

  • Keep @ symbol when part of username and place in square brackets [ ] (Section 9.8, p. 287).
  • Provide emoji's name in square brackets if unable to to replicate, for example [winking face]. Refer to Unicode Emoji Charts for emoji names.
  • An emoji counts as one word.
  • Use (n.d.). if no date available.

Use webpages or website if no other reference category fits for example, journal, blog, conference proceeding (Section 9.2, p.282).

A document or report found on a website

For citing a report found on a website see citing reports in our guide.

Quoting or paraphrasing part of a website

See more examples and details on APA's Webpage on a Website references or directly consult the guide (Section 10.16, pp 350-352).

Not sure how to identify and find the elements you need to cite a webpage? See What information do I need to cite a webpage

American Red Cross. (2019, April 15). Tornadoes - How to stay safe . https://www.redcross.org/about-us/news-and-events/news/2019/tornadoes-how-to-stay-safe.html

American Red Cross. (n.d.). Make a plan . https://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/make-a-plan.html

Ewoldt, J. S. (2020, August 14). 6 ways to reduce your sugar intake . Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/6-ways-to-reduce-your-sugar-intake/art-20267400

(American Red Cross, 2019) (American Red Cross, 2019, "Tornadoes - How to stay safe") [when quoting]

(American Red Cross, "Make a plan")

(Ewoldt, 2020)

  • When the author and site name are the same omit the site name [Section 9.33, p. 298].
  • For in-text citation, if there is no author the title of the webpage is used in its place [Section 8.14, p. 264-265]. Capitalize major words in the title (Section 6.17, p. 167].
  • For the reference list citation, if no author, the title also replaces the author [Section 9.12, p. 289]. Titles in the reference list use sentence case [Section 6.17, p. 168].
  • When making in-text citations, use paragraph numbers (abbreviated to “para.”) if page numbers are not available. If there are no paragraph numbers, use the heading. The heading may be shortened if necessary.
  • Do not include retrieval dates unless the source material is likely to change over time and there is no archived date. When required use the following format:   Retrieved Month Day, YYYY , from  https :// xxxxxx   after the site name. See APA's Webpage on a website with retrieval date for examples.
  • Use bracketed description for works outside of peer-reviewed academic literature: [Letter to the editor], [Audiobook], [Photograph], [Brochure], [Press release], [Computer software], and [Supplemental material]. Refer to Section 9.21, p. 292 and see relevant examples in Chapter 10 of the guide.
  • There is no period after the URL .
  • Do not insert a hyphen when breaking a long URL.

Webpage on a news website

See more examples and details on APA's Webpage on a news website or consult the guide directly (Section 10.16, Example 110, p. 351).

Weber, B. (2020, September 28). Canada's health inequalities between rich and poor exposed in new study . HuffPost. https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/canada-health-inequality-study_ca_5f71f4fcc5b64deddef13346

(Weber, 2020)

  • For articles published in an online news source (e.g. Bloomberg, HuffPost, Salon, Vox) not associated with daily or weekly newspapers

Whole site, not a single document or web page

See more examples and details on APA's Whole website references or directly consult the guide (Section 8.8, pp. 268-269 & Section 10.16, pp. 350-352).

  • If website is mentioned in general (not any particular information on the site), provide name of website as part of the text and place URL in parentheses.
  • No references or in-text citations needed.
  • Link the name directly if writing online.
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How to Cite a Website

Last Updated: February 9, 2023 Fact Checked

This article was co-authored by Michelle Golden, PhD and by wikiHow staff writer, Jennifer Mueller, JD . Michelle Golden is an English teacher in Athens, Georgia. She received her MA in Language Arts Teacher Education in 2008 and received her PhD in English from Georgia State University in 2015. There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 3,553,194 times.

If you're writing a research paper, you'll likely do quite a bit of research online. If you have websites that you want to use as sources for your paper, an entry for the website must appear in the reference list (also called the bibliography or Works Cited) at the end of your paper. You'll also include a citation in-text at the end of any sentence in which you've paraphrased or quoted information that appeared on that website. While the information you need to provide is generally the same across all methods, the way you format that information may vary depending on whether you're using the Modern Language Association (MLA), American Psychological Association (APA), or Chicago style of citation.

Sample Citation Templates

how to cite a website in research paper

  • Example: Claymore, Crystal.
  • If no individual author is listed, but the website is produced by a government agency, organization, or business, use that name as the author. For example, if you're using a CDC web page as a source, you would list the author as "Centers for Disease Control and Prevention."

Tip: For your entire Works Cited entry, if an element doesn't exist or isn't provided, simply skip that part of the citation and move on to the next part.

Step 2 Provide the title of the page in double quotation marks.

  • Example: Claymore, Crystal. "Best-Kept Secrets for Amazing Cupcake Frosting."

Step 3 Give the name of the website in italics followed by the date of publication.

  • Example: Claymore, Crystal. "Best-Kept Secrets for Amazing Cupcake Frosting." Crystal's Cupcakes , 24 Sept. 2018,

Step 4 Include the URL for the web page.

  • Example: Claymore, Crystal. "Best-Kept Secrets for Amazing Cupcake Frosting." Crystal's Cupcakes , 24 Sept. 2018, www.crystalscupcakes.com/amazing-frosting.

Step 5 Close with your date of access if there was no date of publication.

  • Example: Claymore, Crystal. "Best-Kept Secrets for Amazing Cupcake Frosting." Crystal's Cupcakes , www.crystalscupcakes.com/amazing-frosting. Accessed 14 Feb. 2019.

MLA Works Cited Format:

Author Last Name, First Name. "Title of Web Page in Title Case." Name of Website , Day Month Year of publication, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

Step 6 Place a parenthetical citation after referencing the website in your text.

  • For example, you might write: "The best cupcake frosting techniques are often the least intuitive (Claymore)."
  • If you include the author's name in your text, there's no need for a parenthetical citation. For example, you might write: "Award-winning baker Crystal Claymore wasn't afraid to give away all her secrets, sharing her favorite frosting techniques on her website."

Step 1 Start your reference list entry with the name of the author.

  • Example: Canadian Cancer Society.

Step 2 Add the year the website or page was published.

  • Example: Canadian Cancer Society. (2017).
  • If you're citing several pages from the same website that were published in the same year, add a lower-case letter to the end of the year so you can differentiate them in your in-text citations. For example, you might have "2017a" and "2017b."

Step 3 Type the title of the web page in sentence case.

  • Example: Canadian Cancer Society. (2017). Cancer research.
  • If the content you're citing is a stand-alone document, the title should be italicized. This will usually be the case if you're citing a PDF document that appears on a website. If you're not sure, use your best judgment in deciding whether to italicize it or not.

Step 4 Close with the direct URL of the web page.

  • Example: Canadian Cancer Society. (2017). Cancer research. Retrieved from http://www.cancer.ca/en/cancer-information/cancer-101/cancer-research/?region=on

APA Reference List Format:

Author Last Name, A. A. (Year). Title of web page in sentence case. Retrieved from URL

Step 5 Use the author's name and year for in-text parenthetical citations.

  • For example, you might write: "Clinical trials are used to test new cancer treatments (Canadian Cancer Society, 2017)."
  • If you include the author's name in your text, place the year in parentheses immediately after the author's name. For example, you might write: "The Canadian Cancer Society (2017) noted that Canada is a global leader in clinical trials of cancer treatments."

Step 1 Start your bibliographic entry with the name of the author.

  • Example: UN Women.

Step 2 List the title of the web page in double quotation marks.

  • Example: UN Women. "Commission on the Status of Women."

Step 3 Add the name of the website or publishing organization in italics.

  • Example: UN Women. "Commission on the Status of Women." UN Women .

Step 4 Provide the publication date or access date.

  • Example: UN Women. "Commission on the Status of Women." UN Women . Accessed February 14, 2019.

Step 5 Close your entry with a direct URL to the web page.

  • Example: UN Women. "Commission on the Status of Women." UN Women . Accessed February 14, 2019. http://www.unwomen.org/en/csw.

Chicago Bibliography Format:

Author Last Name, First Name. "Title of Web Page in Title Case." Name of Website or Publishing Organization . Accessed Month Day, Year. URL.

Step 6 Use commas instead of periods between elements in footnotes.

  • Example: UN Women, "Commission on the Status of Women," UN Women , accessed February 14, 2019, http://www.unwomen.org/en/csw.

Community Q&A

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Cite an Interview in MLA Format

  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/mla_style/mla_formatting_and_style_guide/mla_works_cited_electronic_sources.html
  • ↑ https://libguides.up.edu/mla/common/websites
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/reference_list_electronic_sources.html
  • ↑ https://libraryguides.vu.edu.au/apa-referencing/7Webpages
  • ↑ https://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/references/examples/webpage-website-references
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/chicago_manual_17th_edition/cmos_formatting_and_style_guide/web_sources.html
  • ↑ http://libanswers.snhu.edu/faq/48009

About This Article

Michelle Golden, PhD

To cite a website in text using MLA formatting, include the author's last name in parentheses at the end of the sentence you're using the source in. If there is no author, include the title of the web page instead. If you're using APA formatting, include the author's last name followed by a comma and the year of publication in parentheses at the end of the sentence. If you don't know the author's name, use the name of the web page instead. For more tips from our English co-author, like how to cite a website in Chicago style, scroll down! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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How to Cite a Website and Online/Electronic Resources

The pages outlines examples of how to cite websites and media sources using the Harvard Referencing method .

What are electronic sources?

An electronic source is any information source in digital format. The library subscribes to many electronic information resources in order to provide access for students. Electronic sources can include: full-text journals, newspapers, company information, e-books, dictionaries, encyclopaedias, economic data, digital images, industry profiles, market research, etc. 

Should I include extra information when I cite electronic sources?

Referencing electronic or online sources can be confusing—it's difficult to know which information to include or where to find it. As a rule, provide as much information as possible concerning authorship, location and availability.

Electronic or online sources require much of the same information as print sources (author, year of publication, title, publisher). However, in some cases extra information may be required:

  • the page, paragraph or section number—what you cite will depend on the information available as many electronic or online sources don’t have pages.
  • identify the format of the source accessed, for example, E-book, podcast etc.
  • provide an accurate access date for online sources, that is, identify when a source was viewed or downloaded.
  • provide the location of an online source, for example, a database or web address.

In-text citations

Cite the name of the author/ organisation responsible for the site and the date created or last revised (use the most recent date):

(Department of Social Services 2020)

According to the Department of Social Services (2020) ...

List of References

Include information in the following order:

  • author (the person or organisation responsible for the site
  • year (date created or revised)
  • site name (in italics)
  • name of sponsor of site (if available) 
  • accessed day month year (the date you viewed the site)
  • URL or Internet address (between pointed brackets). If possible, ensure that the URL is included without a line-break.

Department of Social Services 2020, Department of social services website , Australian government, accessed 20 February 2020, <https: //www .dss.gov.au/>.

Specific pages or documents within a website

Information should include author/authoring body name(s) and the date created or last revised:

(Li 2004) or:

(World Health Organisation 2013) 

  • author (the person or organisation responsible for the site)
  • year (date created or last updated)
  • page title (in italics)
  • name of sponsor of site (if available)
  • accessed day month year (the day you viewed the site)
  • URL or Internet address (pointed brackets). 

One author:

Li, L 2014,  Chinese scroll painting H533 , Australian Museum, accessed 20 February 2016, <https: // australianmuseum.net.au/chinese-scroll-painting-h533>.

Organisation as author:

World Health Organisation 2013, Financial crisis and global health , The United Nations, accessed 1 August 2013, <http: //www .who.int/topics/financial_crisis/en/>.

Webpages with no author or date

If the author's name is unknown, cite the website/page title and date:

( Land for sale on moon 2007)  

Land for sale on moon   2007, accessed 19 June 2007, <http: // www . moonlandrealestate.com>.

If there is not date on the page, use the abbreviation n.d. (no date):

(ArtsNSW n.d.)

List if References

ArtsNSW n.d.,  New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards , NSW Department of the Arts, Sport and Recreation, accessed 19 June 2007, <http: // www . arts.nsw.gov.au/awards/ LiteraryAwards/litawards.htm>.

Kim, M n.d.,  Chinese New Year pictures and propaganda posters , Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, accessed 12 April 2016, <https: // collection.maas.museum/set/6274>.

Media articles (print)

If there is no author, list the name of the newspaper, the date, year and page number:

( The Independent 2013, p. 36)

If there is an author, cite as you would for a journal article:

(Donaghy 1994, p. 3)

Articles can also be mentioned in the running text:

University rankings were examined in a Sydney Morning Herald report by Williamson (1998, p. 21), where it was evident that ...

  • year of publication
  • article title (between single quotation marks)
  • publication title (in italics with maximum capitalisation)
  • date of article (day, month)
  • page number

Williamson, S 1998, ‘UNSW gains top ranking from quality team’, Sydney Morning Herald , 30 February, p.21. 

Donaghy, B 1994, ‘National meeting set to review tertiary admissions’, Campus News ,  3-9 March, p. 3.

An unattributed newspaper article:

If there is no named author, list the article title first:

  • Article title, between single quotation marks,
  • Publication title (in italics with maximum capitalisation)
  • Date published (date, month, year)
  • Page number (if available)

‘Baby tapir wins hearts at zoo’, The Independent , 9 August 2013, p. 36

Online media articles

A news article from an electronic database:

If the article has a named author:

(Pianin 2001)

  • author (if available)
  • newspaper title (in italics)
  • date of article (day, month, page number—if given—and any additional information available)
  • accessed day month year (the date you accessed the items)
  • from name of database
  • item number (if given).

Pianin, E 2001, 'As coal's fortunes climb, mountains tremble in W.Va; energy policy is transforming lives', The Washington Post,  25 February, p. A03, accessed March 2001 from Electric Library Australasia.

A news article without a named author:

No named author:

( New York Daily Times 1830)  

The article can also be discussed in the body of the paragraph:

An account of the popularity of the baby tapir in The Independent (2013) stated that ...

If there is no named author, list the article title first.

'Amending the Constitution', New York Daily Times , 16 October 1851, p. 2, accessed 15 July 2007 from ProQuest Historical Newspapers database.

'Baby tapir wins hearts at zoo', The Independent , 9 August 2013, Accessed 25 January 2014, <http: // www . independent.ie/world-news/and-finally/baby-tapir-wins-hearts-at-zoo-30495570.html>.

An online news article:

Cite the author name and year:

(Coorey 2007)

Coorey, P 2007, ‘Costello hints at green safety net’, Sydney Morning Herald , 10 May, accessed 14 May 2012, <http: // www . smh.com.au/news/business/costello-hints-at-green-safety-net/2007/05/09/1178390393875.html>.

While a URL for the article should be included, if it is very long (more than two lines) or unfixed (from a search engine), only include the publication URL:

Holmes, L 2017, 'The woman making a living out of pretending to be Kylie Minogue', The Daily Telegraph , 23 April, accessed 22 May 2017, <http: // www . dailytelegraph.com.au>.

Media releases

Cite the author (the person responsible for the release) and date:

Prime Minister Howard (2007) announced plans for further welfare reform...

  • author name or authoring organisation name
  • title of release (in italics)
  • accessed day month year
  • URL (between pointed brackets) 

Office of the Prime Minister 2007, Welfare Payments Reform , media release, accessed 25 July 2007, <http: // www . pm.gov.au/media/Release/2007/Media_Release24432.cfm>.

How to cite broadcast materials and communications

Harvard referencing

  • How to cite different sources
  • How to cite references
  • How to cite online/electronic sources
  • Broadcast and other sources
  • Citing images and tables
  • FAQs and troubleshooting
  • About this guide
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  • Plagiarism and grammar
  • Citation guides

Cite a Website

Don't let plagiarism errors spoil your paper, citing a website in apa.

Once you’ve identified a credible website to use, create a citation and begin building your reference list. Citation Machine citing tools can help you create references for online news articles, government websites, blogs, and many other website! Keeping track of sources as you research and write can help you stay organized and ethical. If you end up not using a source, you can easily delete it from your bibliography. Ready to create a citation? Enter the website’s URL into the search box above. You’ll get a list of results, so you can identify and choose the correct source you want to cite. It’s that easy to begin!

If you’re wondering how to cite a website in APA, use the structure below.

Author Last Name, First initial. (Year, Month Date Published). Title of web page . Name of Website. URL

Example of an APA format website:

Austerlitz, S. (2015, March 3). How long can a spinoff like ‘Better Call Saul’ last? FiveThirtyEight. http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/how-long-can-a-spinoff-like-better-call-saul-last/

Keep in mind that not all information found on a website follows the structure above. Only use the Website format above if your online source does not fit another source category. For example, if you’re looking at a video on YouTube, refer to the ‘YouTube Video’ section. If you’re citing a newspaper article found online, refer to ‘Newspapers Found Online’ section. Again, an APA website citation is strictly for web pages that do not fit better with one of the other categories on this page.

Social media:

When adding the text of a post, keep the original capitalization, spelling, hashtags, emojis (if possible), and links within the text.

Facebook posts:

Structure: Facebook user’s Last name, F. M. (Year, Monday Day of Post). Up to the first 20 words of Facebook post [Source type if attached] [Post type]. Facebook. URL

Source type examples: [Video attached], [Image attached]

Post type examples: [Status update], [Video], [Image], [Infographic]

Gomez, S. (2020, February 4). Guys, I’ve been working on this special project for two years and can officially say Rare Beauty is launching in [Video]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/Selena/videos/1340031502835436/

Life at Chegg. (2020, February 7) It breaks our heart that 50% of college students right here in Silicon Valley are hungry. That’s why Chegg has [Images attached] [Status update]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/LifeAtChegg/posts/1076718522691591

Twitter posts:

Structure: Account holder’s Last name, F. M. [Twitter Handle]. (Year, Month Day of Post). Up to the first 20 words of tweet [source type if attached] [Tweet]. Twitter. URL

Source type examples: [Video attached], [Image attached], [Poll attached]

Example: Edelman, J. [Edelman11]. (2018, April 26). Nine years ago today my life changed forever. New England took a chance on a long shot and I’ve worked [Video attached] [Tweet]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/Edelman11/status/989652345922473985

Instagram posts:

APA citation format: Account holder’s Last name, F. M. [@Instagram handle]. (Year, Month Day). Up to the first 20 words of caption [Photograph(s) and/or Video(s)]. Instagram. URL

Example: Portman, N. [@natalieportman]. (2019, January 5). Many of my best experiences last year were getting to listen to and learn from so many incredible people through [Videos]. Instagram. https://www.instagram.com/p/BsRD-FBB8HI/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

If this guide hasn’t helped solve all of your referencing questions, or if you’re still feeling the need to type “how to cite a website APA” into Google, then check out our APA citation generator on CitationMachine.com, which can build your references for you!

Featured links:

APA Citation Generator  |  Website   | Books | Journal Articles | YouTube | Images | Movies | Interview | PDF

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  • Reference a Website in Harvard Style | Templates & Examples

Reference a Website in Harvard Style | Templates & Examples

Published on 19 May 2020 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on 7 November 2022.

To reference a website in Harvard style , include the name of the author or organization, the year of publication, the title of the page, the URL, and the date on which you accessed the website.

Different formats are used for other kinds of online source, such as articles, social media posts and multimedia content. You can generate accurate Harvard references for all kinds of sources with our free reference generator:

Harvard Reference Generator

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Table of contents

Online articles, social media posts, images, videos and podcasts, referencing websites with missing information, frequently asked questions about harvard website references.

Blog posts and online newspaper articles are both referenced in the same format: include the title of the article in quotation marks, the name of the blog or newspaper in italics, and the date of publication.

The format for a magazine article is slightly different. Instead of a precise date, include the month, season, or volume and issue number, depending on what the magazine uses to identify its issues.

The URL and access date information are included only when the article is online-exclusive.

Prevent plagiarism, run a free check.

To reference posts from social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, include the username and the platform in square brackets. Write usernames the way they appear on the platform, with the same capitalization and symbols.

If the post has a title, use it (in quotation marks). If the post is untitled, use the text of the post instead. Do not use italics. If the text is long, you can replace some of it with an ellipsis.

Online content is referenced differently if it is in video, audio or image form.

To cite an image found online, such as an artwork, photograph, or infographic, include the image format (e.g. ‘Photograph’, ‘Oil on canvas’) in square brackets.

Online videos, such as those on YouTube, Instagram, Vimeo and Dailymotion, are cited similarly to general web pages. Where a video is uploaded under the name of an individual, write the name in the usual format. Otherwise, write the username of the uploader as it appears on the site.

If you want to locate a specific point in a video in an in-text citation, you can do so using a timestamp.

For a podcast reference, you just need the name of the individual episode, not of the whole series. The word ‘Podcast’ is always included in square brackets. As with videos, you can use a timestamp to locate a specific point in the in-text citation.

Online sources are often missing information you would usually need for a citation: author, title or date. Here’s what to do when these details are not available.

When a website doesn’t list a specific individual author, you can usually find a corporate author to list instead. This is the organisation responsible for the source:

In cases where there’s no suitable corporate author (such as online dictionaries or Wikis), use the title of the source in the author position instead:

In Harvard style, when a source doesn’t list a specific date of publication, replace it with the words ‘no date’ in both the in-text citation and the reference list. You should still include an access date:

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It’s important to assess the reliability of information found online. Look for sources from established publications and institutions with expertise (e.g. peer-reviewed journals and government agencies).

The CRAAP test (currency, relevance, authority, accuracy, purpose) can aid you in assessing sources, as can our list of credible sources . You should generally avoid citing websites like Wikipedia that can be edited by anyone – instead, look for the original source of the information in the “References” section.

You can generally omit page numbers in your in-text citations of online sources which don’t have them. But when you quote or paraphrase a specific passage from a particularly long online source, it’s useful to find an alternate location marker.

For text-based sources, you can use paragraph numbers (e.g. ‘para. 4’) or headings (e.g. ‘under “Methodology”’). With video or audio sources, use a timestamp (e.g. ‘10:15’).

In Harvard referencing, up to three author names are included in an in-text citation or reference list entry. When there are four or more authors, include only the first, followed by ‘ et al. ’

A Harvard in-text citation should appear in brackets every time you quote, paraphrase, or refer to information from a source.

The citation can appear immediately after the quotation or paraphrase, or at the end of the sentence. If you’re quoting, place the citation outside of the quotation marks but before any other punctuation like a comma or full stop.

Cite this Scribbr article

If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the ‘Cite this Scribbr article’ button to automatically add the citation to our free Reference Generator.

Caulfield, J. (2022, November 07). Reference a Website in Harvard Style | Templates & Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved 12 February 2024, from https://www.scribbr.co.uk/referencing/harvard-website-reference/

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how to cite a website in research paper

Purdue Online Writing Lab Purdue OWL® College of Liberal Arts

MLA In-Text Citations: The Basics

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MLA (Modern Language Association) style is most commonly used to write papers and cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities. This resource, updated to reflect the MLA Handbook (9 th ed.), offers examples for the general format of MLA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the Works Cited page.

Guidelines for referring to the works of others in your text using MLA style are covered throughout the  MLA Handbook  and in chapter 7 of the  MLA Style Manual . Both books provide extensive examples, so it's a good idea to consult them if you want to become even more familiar with MLA guidelines or if you have a particular reference question.

Basic in-text citation rules

In MLA Style, referring to the works of others in your text is done using parenthetical citations . This method involves providing relevant source information in parentheses whenever a sentence uses a quotation or paraphrase. Usually, the simplest way to do this is to put all of the source information in parentheses at the end of the sentence (i.e., just before the period). However, as the examples below will illustrate, there are situations where it makes sense to put the parenthetical elsewhere in the sentence, or even to leave information out.

General Guidelines

  • The source information required in a parenthetical citation depends (1) upon the source medium (e.g. print, web, DVD) and (2) upon the source’s entry on the Works Cited page.
  • Any source information that you provide in-text must correspond to the source information on the Works Cited page. More specifically, whatever signal word or phrase you provide to your readers in the text must be the first thing that appears on the left-hand margin of the corresponding entry on the Works Cited page.

In-text citations: Author-page style

MLA format follows the author-page method of in-text citation. This means that the author's last name and the page number(s) from which the quotation or paraphrase is taken must appear in the text, and a complete reference should appear on your Works Cited page. The author's name may appear either in the sentence itself or in parentheses following the quotation or paraphrase, but the page number(s) should always appear in the parentheses, not in the text of your sentence. For example:

Both citations in the examples above, (263) and (Wordsworth 263), tell readers that the information in the sentence can be located on page 263 of a work by an author named Wordsworth. If readers want more information about this source, they can turn to the Works Cited page, where, under the name of Wordsworth, they would find the following information:

Wordsworth, William. Lyrical Ballads . Oxford UP, 1967.

In-text citations for print sources with known author

For print sources like books, magazines, scholarly journal articles, and newspapers, provide a signal word or phrase (usually the author’s last name) and a page number. If you provide the signal word/phrase in the sentence, you do not need to include it in the parenthetical citation.

These examples must correspond to an entry that begins with Burke, which will be the first thing that appears on the left-hand margin of an entry on the Works Cited page:

Burke, Kenneth. Language as Symbolic Action: Essays on Life, Literature, and Method . University of California Press, 1966.

In-text citations for print sources by a corporate author

When a source has a corporate author, it is acceptable to use the name of the corporation followed by the page number for the in-text citation. You should also use abbreviations (e.g., nat'l for national) where appropriate, so as to avoid interrupting the flow of reading with overly long parenthetical citations.

In-text citations for sources with non-standard labeling systems

If a source uses a labeling or numbering system other than page numbers, such as a script or poetry, precede the citation with said label. When citing a poem, for instance, the parenthetical would begin with the word “line”, and then the line number or range. For example, the examination of William Blake’s poem “The Tyger” would be cited as such:

The speaker makes an ardent call for the exploration of the connection between the violence of nature and the divinity of creation. “In what distant deeps or skies. / Burnt the fire of thine eyes," they ask in reference to the tiger as they attempt to reconcile their intimidation with their relationship to creationism (lines 5-6).

Longer labels, such as chapters (ch.) and scenes (sc.), should be abbreviated.

In-text citations for print sources with no known author

When a source has no known author, use a shortened title of the work instead of an author name, following these guidelines.

Place the title in quotation marks if it's a short work (such as an article) or italicize it if it's a longer work (e.g. plays, books, television shows, entire Web sites) and provide a page number if it is available.

Titles longer than a standard noun phrase should be shortened into a noun phrase by excluding articles. For example, To the Lighthouse would be shortened to Lighthouse .

If the title cannot be easily shortened into a noun phrase, the title should be cut after the first clause, phrase, or punctuation:

In this example, since the reader does not know the author of the article, an abbreviated title appears in the parenthetical citation, and the full title of the article appears first at the left-hand margin of its respective entry on the Works Cited page. Thus, the writer includes the title in quotation marks as the signal phrase in the parenthetical citation in order to lead the reader directly to the source on the Works Cited page. The Works Cited entry appears as follows:

"The Impact of Global Warming in North America." Global Warming: Early Signs . 1999. www.climatehotmap.org/. Accessed 23 Mar. 2009.

If the title of the work begins with a quotation mark, such as a title that refers to another work, that quote or quoted title can be used as the shortened title. The single quotation marks must be included in the parenthetical, rather than the double quotation.

Parenthetical citations and Works Cited pages, used in conjunction, allow readers to know which sources you consulted in writing your essay, so that they can either verify your interpretation of the sources or use them in their own scholarly work.

Author-page citation for classic and literary works with multiple editions

Page numbers are always required, but additional citation information can help literary scholars, who may have a different edition of a classic work, like Marx and Engels's  The Communist Manifesto . In such cases, give the page number of your edition (making sure the edition is listed in your Works Cited page, of course) followed by a semicolon, and then the appropriate abbreviations for volume (vol.), book (bk.), part (pt.), chapter (ch.), section (sec.), or paragraph (par.). For example:

Author-page citation for works in an anthology, periodical, or collection

When you cite a work that appears inside a larger source (for instance, an article in a periodical or an essay in a collection), cite the author of the  internal source (i.e., the article or essay). For example, to cite Albert Einstein's article "A Brief Outline of the Theory of Relativity," which was published in  Nature  in 1921, you might write something like this:

See also our page on documenting periodicals in the Works Cited .

Citing authors with same last names

Sometimes more information is necessary to identify the source from which a quotation is taken. For instance, if two or more authors have the same last name, provide both authors' first initials (or even the authors' full name if different authors share initials) in your citation. For example:

Citing a work by multiple authors

For a source with two authors, list the authors’ last names in the text or in the parenthetical citation:

Corresponding Works Cited entry:

Best, David, and Sharon Marcus. “Surface Reading: An Introduction.” Representations , vol. 108, no. 1, Fall 2009, pp. 1-21. JSTOR, doi:10.1525/rep.2009.108.1.1

For a source with three or more authors, list only the first author’s last name, and replace the additional names with et al.

Franck, Caroline, et al. “Agricultural Subsidies and the American Obesity Epidemic.” American Journal of Preventative Medicine , vol. 45, no. 3, Sept. 2013, pp. 327-333.

Citing multiple works by the same author

If you cite more than one work by an author, include a shortened title for the particular work from which you are quoting to distinguish it from the others. Put short titles of books in italics and short titles of articles in quotation marks.

Citing two articles by the same author :

Citing two books by the same author :

Additionally, if the author's name is not mentioned in the sentence, format your citation with the author's name followed by a comma, followed by a shortened title of the work, and, when appropriate, the page number(s):

Citing multivolume works

If you cite from different volumes of a multivolume work, always include the volume number followed by a colon. Put a space after the colon, then provide the page number(s). (If you only cite from one volume, provide only the page number in parentheses.)

Citing the Bible

In your first parenthetical citation, you want to make clear which Bible you're using (and underline or italicize the title), as each version varies in its translation, followed by book (do not italicize or underline), chapter, and verse. For example:

If future references employ the same edition of the Bible you’re using, list only the book, chapter, and verse in the parenthetical citation:

John of Patmos echoes this passage when describing his vision (Rev. 4.6-8).

Citing indirect sources

Sometimes you may have to use an indirect source. An indirect source is a source cited within another source. For such indirect quotations, use "qtd. in" to indicate the source you actually consulted. For example:

Note that, in most cases, a responsible researcher will attempt to find the original source, rather than citing an indirect source.

Citing transcripts, plays, or screenplays

Sources that take the form of a dialogue involving two or more participants have special guidelines for their quotation and citation. Each line of dialogue should begin with the speaker's name written in all capitals and indented half an inch. A period follows the name (e.g., JAMES.) . After the period, write the dialogue. Each successive line after the first should receive an additional indentation. When another person begins speaking, start a new line with that person's name indented only half an inch. Repeat this pattern each time the speaker changes. You can include stage directions in the quote if they appear in the original source.

Conclude with a parenthetical that explains where to find the excerpt in the source. Usually, the author and title of the source can be given in a signal phrase before quoting the excerpt, so the concluding parenthetical will often just contain location information like page numbers or act/scene indicators.

Here is an example from O'Neill's  The Iceman Cometh.

WILLIE. (Pleadingly) Give me a drink, Rocky. Harry said it was all right. God, I need a drink.

ROCKY. Den grab it. It's right under your nose.

WILLIE. (Avidly) Thanks. (He takes the bottle with both twitching hands and tilts it to his lips and gulps down the whiskey in big swallows.) (1.1)

Citing non-print or sources from the Internet

With more and more scholarly work published on the Internet, you may have to cite sources you found in digital environments. While many sources on the Internet should not be used for scholarly work (reference the OWL's  Evaluating Sources of Information  resource), some Web sources are perfectly acceptable for research. When creating in-text citations for electronic, film, or Internet sources, remember that your citation must reference the source on your Works Cited page.

Sometimes writers are confused with how to craft parenthetical citations for electronic sources because of the absence of page numbers. However, these sorts of entries often do not require a page number in the parenthetical citation. For electronic and Internet sources, follow the following guidelines:

  • Include in the text the first item that appears in the Work Cited entry that corresponds to the citation (e.g. author name, article name, website name, film name).
  • Do not provide paragraph numbers or page numbers based on your Web browser’s print preview function.
  • Unless you must list the Web site name in the signal phrase in order to get the reader to the appropriate entry, do not include URLs in-text. Only provide partial URLs such as when the name of the site includes, for example, a domain name, like  CNN.com  or  Forbes.com,  as opposed to writing out http://www.cnn.com or http://www.forbes.com.

Miscellaneous non-print sources

Two types of non-print sources you may encounter are films and lectures/presentations:

In the two examples above “Herzog” (a film’s director) and “Yates” (a presentor) lead the reader to the first item in each citation’s respective entry on the Works Cited page:

Herzog, Werner, dir. Fitzcarraldo . Perf. Klaus Kinski. Filmverlag der Autoren, 1982.

Yates, Jane. "Invention in Rhetoric and Composition." Gaps Addressed: Future Work in Rhetoric and Composition, CCCC, Palmer House Hilton, 2002. Address.

Electronic sources

Electronic sources may include web pages and online news or magazine articles:

In the first example (an online magazine article), the writer has chosen not to include the author name in-text; however, two entries from the same author appear in the Works Cited. Thus, the writer includes both the author’s last name and the article title in the parenthetical citation in order to lead the reader to the appropriate entry on the Works Cited page (see below).

In the second example (a web page), a parenthetical citation is not necessary because the page does not list an author, and the title of the article, “MLA Formatting and Style Guide,” is used as a signal phrase within the sentence. If the title of the article was not named in the sentence, an abbreviated version would appear in a parenthetical citation at the end of the sentence. Both corresponding Works Cited entries are as follows:

Taylor, Rumsey. "Fitzcarraldo." Slant , 13 Jun. 2003, www.slantmagazine.com/film/review/fitzcarraldo/. Accessed 29 Sep. 2009. 

"MLA Formatting and Style Guide." The Purdue OWL , 2 Aug. 2016, owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/. Accessed 2 April 2018.

Multiple citations

To cite multiple sources in the same parenthetical reference, separate the citations by a semi-colon:

Time-based media sources

When creating in-text citations for media that has a runtime, such as a movie or podcast, include the range of hours, minutes and seconds you plan to reference. For example: (00:02:15-00:02:35).

When a citation is not needed

Common sense and ethics should determine your need for documenting sources. You do not need to give sources for familiar proverbs, well-known quotations, or common knowledge (For example, it is expected that U.S. citizens know that George Washington was the first President.). Remember that citing sources is a rhetorical task, and, as such, can vary based on your audience. If you’re writing for an expert audience of a scholarly journal, for example, you may need to deal with expectations of what constitutes “common knowledge” that differ from common norms.

Other Sources

The MLA Handbook describes how to cite many different kinds of authors and content creators. However, you may occasionally encounter a source or author category that the handbook does not describe, making the best way to proceed can be unclear.

In these cases, it's typically acceptable to apply the general principles of MLA citation to the new kind of source in a way that's consistent and sensible. A good way to do this is to simply use the standard MLA directions for a type of source that resembles the source you want to cite.

You may also want to investigate whether a third-party organization has provided directions for how to cite this kind of source. For example, Norquest College provides guidelines for citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers⁠ —an author category that does not appear in the MLA Handbook . In cases like this, however, it's a good idea to ask your instructor or supervisor whether using third-party citation guidelines might present problems.

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Quick guide to Harvard referencing (Cite Them Right)

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There are different versions of the Harvard referencing style. This guide is a quick introduction to the commonly-used Cite Them Right version. You will find further guidance available through the OU Library on the Cite Them Right Database .

For help and support with referencing and the full Cite Them Right guide, have a look at the Library’s page on referencing and plagiarism . If you need guidance referencing OU module material you can check out which sections of Cite Them Right are recommended when referencing physical and online module material .

This guide does not apply to OU Law undergraduate students . If you are studying a module beginning with W1xx, W2xx or W3xx, you should refer to the Quick guide to Cite Them Right referencing for Law modules .

Table of contents

In-text citations and full references.

  • Secondary referencing
  • Page numbers
  • Citing multiple sources published in the same year by the same author

Full reference examples

Referencing consists of two elements:

  • in-text citations, which are inserted in the body of your text and are included in the word count. An in-text citation gives the author(s) and publication date of a source you are referring to. If the publication date is not given, the phrase 'no date' is used instead of a date. If using direct quotations or you refer to a specific section in the source you also need the page number/s if available, or paragraph number for web pages.
  • full references, which are given in alphabetical order in reference list at the end of your work and are not included in the word count. Full references give full bibliographical information for all the sources you have referred to in the body of your text.

To see a reference list and intext citations check out this example assignment on Cite Them Right .

Difference between reference list and bibliography

a reference list only includes sources you have referred to in the body of your text

a bibliography includes sources you have referred to in the body of your text AND sources that were part of your background reading that you did not use in your assignment

Back to top

Examples of in-text citations

You need to include an in-text citation wherever you quote or paraphrase from a source. An in-text citation consists of the last name of the author(s), the year of publication, and a page number if relevant. There are a number of ways of incorporating in-text citations into your work - some examples are provided below. Alternatively you can see examples of setting out in-text citations in Cite Them Right .

Note: When referencing a chapter of an edited book, your in-text citation should give the author(s) of the chapter.

Online module materials

(Includes written online module activities, audio-visual material such as online tutorials, recordings or videos).

When referencing material from module websites, the date of publication is the year you started studying the module.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication/presentation) 'Title of item'. Module code: Module title . Available at: URL of VLE (Accessed: date).

OR, if there is no named author:

The Open University (Year of publication/presentation) 'Title of item'. Module code: Module title . Available at: URL of VLE (Accessed: date).

Rietdorf, K. and Bootman, M. (2022) 'Topic 3: Rare diseases'. S290: Investigating human health and disease . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=1967195 (Accessed: 24 January 2023).

The Open University (2022) ‘3.1 The purposes of childhood and youth research’. EK313: Issues in research with children and young people . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=1949633&section=1.3 (Accessed: 24 January 2023).

You can also use this template to reference videos and audio that are hosted on your module website:

The Open University (2022) ‘Video 2.7 An example of a Frith-Happé animation’. SK298: Brain, mind and mental health . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=2013014&section=4.9.6 (Accessed: 22 November 2022).

The Open University (2022) ‘Audio 2 Interview with Richard Sorabji (Part 2)’. A113: Revolutions . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=1960941&section=5.6 (Accessed: 22 November 2022).

Note: if a complete journal article has been uploaded to a module website, or if you have seen an article referred to on the website and then accessed the original version, reference the original journal article, and do not mention the module materials. If only an extract from an article is included in your module materials that you want to reference, you should use secondary referencing, with the module materials as the 'cited in' source, as described above.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of message', Title of discussion board , in Module code: Module title . Available at: URL of VLE (Accessed: date).

Fitzpatrick, M. (2022) ‘A215 - presentation of TMAs', Tutor group discussion & Workbook activities , in A215: Creative writing . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/forumng/discuss.php?d=4209566 (Accessed: 24 January 2022).

Note: When an ebook looks like a printed book, with publication details and pagination, reference as a printed book.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) Title . Edition if later than first. Place of publication: publisher. Series and volume number if relevant.

For ebooks that do not contain print publication details

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) Title of book . Available at: DOI or URL (Accessed: date).

Example with one author:

Bell, J. (2014) Doing your research project . Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Adams, D. (1979) The hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy . Available at: http://www.amazon.co.uk/kindle-ebooks (Accessed: 23 June 2021).

Example with two or three authors:

Goddard, J. and Barrett, S. (2015) The health needs of young people leaving care . Norwich: University of East Anglia, School of Social Work and Psychosocial Studies.

Example with four or more authors:

Young, H.D. et al. (2015) Sears and Zemansky's university physics . San Francisco, CA: Addison-Wesley.

Note: You can choose one or other method to reference four or more authors (unless your School requires you to name all authors in your reference list) and your approach should be consistent.

Note: Books that have an editor, or editors, where each chapter is written by a different author or authors.

Surname of chapter author, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of chapter or section', in Initial. Surname of book editor (ed.) Title of book . Place of publication: publisher, Page reference.

Franklin, A.W. (2012) 'Management of the problem', in S.M. Smith (ed.) The maltreatment of children . Lancaster: MTP, pp. 83–95.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Journal , volume number (issue number), page reference.

If accessed online:

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Journal , volume number (issue number), page reference. Available at: DOI or URL (if required) (Accessed: date).

Shirazi, T. (2010) 'Successful teaching placements in secondary schools: achieving QTS practical handbooks', European Journal of Teacher Education , 33(3), pp. 323–326.

Shirazi, T. (2010) 'Successful teaching placements in secondary schools: achieving QTS practical handbooks', European Journal of Teacher Education , 33(3), pp. 323–326. Available at: https://libezproxy.open.ac.uk/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/log... (Accessed: 27 January 2023).

Barke, M. and Mowl, G. (2016) 'Málaga – a failed resort of the early twentieth century?', Journal of Tourism History , 2(3), pp. 187–212. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/1755182X.2010.523145

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Newspaper , Day and month, Page reference.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Newspaper , Day and month, Page reference if available. Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Mansell, W. and Bloom, A. (2012) ‘£10,000 carrot to tempt physics experts’, The Guardian , 20 June, p. 5.

Roberts, D. and Ackerman, S. (2013) 'US draft resolution allows Obama 90 days for military action against Syria', The Guardian , 4 September. Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/04/syria-strikes-draft-resolut... (Accessed: 9 September 2015).

Surname, Initial. (Year that the site was published/last updated) Title of web page . Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Organisation (Year that the page was last updated) Title of web page . Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Robinson, J. (2007) Social variation across the UK . Available at: https://www.bl.uk/british-accents-and-dialects/articles/social-variation... (Accessed: 21 November 2021).

The British Psychological Society (2018) Code of Ethics and Conduct . Available at: https://www.bps.org.uk/news-and-policy/bps-code-ethics-and-conduct (Accessed: 22 March 2019).

Note: Cite Them Right Online offers guidance for referencing webpages that do not include authors' names and dates. However, be extra vigilant about the suitability of such webpages.

Surname, Initial. (Year) Title of photograph . Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Kitton, J. (2013) Golden sunset . Available at: https://www.jameskittophotography.co.uk/photo_8692150.html (Accessed: 21 November 2021).

stanitsa_dance (2021) Cossack dance ensemble . Available at: https://www.instagram.com/p/COI_slphWJ_/ (Accessed: 13 June 2023).

Note: If no title can be found then replace it with a short description.

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CRJU 1040: Agency Research Project, Mrs. McCook, Spring 2024: How to cite a government website page in APA (7th ed.)

  • What are domain suffixes?
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Government website page (in-text citation)

General Format

In-Text Citation (Paraphrase):

(Government Author or name of Government Agency if no author listed, Year or n.d. if no date is given)

In-Text Citation (Quotation):

(Government Author or name of Government Agency, Year or n.d. if no date given, page or paragraph number [if available])

First time: (U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration [DEA], 2019)

Subsequently: (DEA, 2019)

First time: (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development [HUD], 2019)

Subsequently: (HUD, 2019)

TIP: To abbreviate or not  abbreviate?

QUESTION:   If I am citing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the in-text citation, do I need to use the full name or can I just use CDC?

ANSWER: It's always up to your instructor. If you're not sure, ask.  Generally, however, If the corporate author names (corporations, organizations, and government agencies) are readily identified by an abbreviation, you should include the full name in the first citation along with the abbreviation in brackets and then use the abbreviation in all other subsequent in-text citations.

Example: First in-text citation

  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], 2014)

Example: Subsequent in-text citations

  • (CDC, 2014)

Government website page reference (citation of the entire work at end of paper)

General Format:

Name of Government Agency. (Year, Month if applicable Day if applicable).  Title of article: Subtitle . URL of specific document

U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. (2019, August 8).  Special agent . Retrieved February 6, 2024,               from  https://www.dea.gov/careers/special-agent

Helpful hints:

  • If the page names an individual author, cite their name first:
  • Lastname, F. M. (Year, Month Date).  Title of page . Site name. URL

Price, D. (2018, March 23).  Laziness does not exist . Medium.  https://humanparts.medium.com/laziness-does-not-exist-3af27e312d01

  • If the resource was written by a group or organization, use the name of the group/organization as the author. Additionally, if the author and site name are the same, omit the site name from the citation.
  • Group name. (Year, Month Date).  Title of page . Site name. URL

American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. (2019, November 21).  Justice served: Case closed for over 40 dogfighting victims .  https://www.aspca.org/news/justice-served-case-closed-over-40-dogfighting-victims

  • If the page's author is not listed, start with the title instead. Additionally, include a retrieval date when the page's content is likely to change over time (like, for instance, if you're citing a wiki that is publicly edited).
  • Title of page . (Year, Month Date). Site name. Retrieved Month Date, Year, from URL

Tuscan white bean pasta.  (2018, February 25). Budgetbytes. Retrieved March 18, 2020, from  https://www.budgetbytes.com/tuscan-white-bean-pasta/

  • If the date of publication is not listed, use the abbreviation (n.d.). 
  • Author or Group name. (n.d.).  Title of page . Site name (if applicable). URL

National Alliance on Mental Illness. (n.d.).  Mental health conditions .  https://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions

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  • How to Cite a Journal Article | APA, MLA, & Chicago Examples

How to Cite a Journal Article | APA, MLA, & Chicago Examples

Published on March 9, 2021 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on January 17, 2024.

To cite an article from an academic journal, you need an in-text citation and a corresponding reference listing the name(s) of the author(s), the publication date, the article title and journal name, the volume and issue numbers, the page range, and the URL or DOI .

Different citation styles present this information differently. The main citation styles are APA , MLA , and Chicago style .

You can use the interactive example generator to explore the format for APA and MLA journal article citations.

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Table of contents

Citing an article in apa style, citing an article in mla style, citing an article in chicago style, frequently asked questions about citations.

In an APA Style journal article reference , the article title is in plain text and sentence case, while the journal name appears in italics, in title case.

The in-text citation lists up to two authors; for three or more, use “ et al. ”

When citing a journal article in print or from a database, don’t include a URL. You can still include the DOI if available.

You can also cite a journal article using our free APA Citation Generator . Search by title or DOI to automatically generate a correct citation.

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In an MLA Works Cited entry for a journal article , the article title appears in quotation marks, the name of the journal in italics—both in title case.

List up to two authors in both the in-text citation and the Works Cited entry. For three or more, use “et al.”

A DOI is always included when available; a URL appears if no DOI is available but the article was accessed online . If you accessed the article in print and no DOI is available, you can omit this part.

You can also use our free MLA Citation Generator to create your journal article citations.

Generate accurate MLA citations with Scribbr

In Chicago notes and bibliography style, you include a bibliography entry for each source, and cite them in the text using footnotes .

A bibliography entry for a journal article lists the title of the article in quotation marks and the journal name in italics—both in title case. List up to 10 authors in full; use “et al.” for 11 or more.

In the footnote, use “et al.” for four or more authors.

A DOI or URL (preferably a DOI) is included for articles consulted online; for articles consulted in print, omit this part.

Chicago also offers an alternative author-date style of citation. Examples of how to cite journal articles in this style can be found here .

The elements included in journal article citations across APA , MLA , and Chicago style are the name(s) of the author(s), the title of the article, the year of publication, the name of the journal, the volume and issue numbers, the page range of the article, and, when accessed online, the DOI or URL.

In MLA and Chicago style, you also include the specific month or season of publication alongside the year, when this information is available.

The DOI is usually clearly visible when you open a journal article on an academic database. It is often listed near the publication date, and includes “doi.org” or “DOI:”. If the database has a “cite this article” button, this should also produce a citation with the DOI included.

If you can’t find the DOI, you can search on Crossref using information like the author, the article title, and the journal name.

The abbreviation “ et al. ” (Latin for “and others”) is used to shorten citations of sources with multiple authors.

“Et al.” is used in APA in-text citations of sources with 3+ authors, e.g. (Smith et al., 2019). It is not used in APA reference entries .

Use “et al.” for 3+ authors in MLA in-text citations and Works Cited entries.

Use “et al.” for 4+ authors in a Chicago in-text citation , and for 10+ authors in a Chicago bibliography entry.

Check if your university or course guidelines specify which citation style to use. If the choice is left up to you, consider which style is most commonly used in your field.

  • APA Style is the most popular citation style, widely used in the social and behavioral sciences.
  • MLA style is the second most popular, used mainly in the humanities.
  • Chicago notes and bibliography style is also popular in the humanities, especially history.
  • Chicago author-date style tends to be used in the sciences.

Other more specialized styles exist for certain fields, such as Bluebook and OSCOLA for law.

The most important thing is to choose one style and use it consistently throughout your text.

Cite this Scribbr article

If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the “Cite this Scribbr article” button to automatically add the citation to our free Citation Generator.

Caulfield, J. (2024, January 17). How to Cite a Journal Article | APA, MLA, & Chicago Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved February 12, 2024, from https://www.scribbr.com/citing-sources/cite-a-journal-article/

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  1. How to Cite a Website

    To cite a page from a website, you need a short in-text citation and a corresponding reference stating the author's name, the date of publication, the title of the page, the website name, and the URL. This information is presented differently in different citation styles. APA, MLA, and Chicago are the most commonly used styles.

  2. How to Cite a Website in APA Style

    APA website citations usually include the author, the publication date, the title of the page or article, the website name, and the URL. If there is no author, start the citation with the title of the article. If the page is likely to change over time, add a retrieval date.

  3. MLA Works Cited: Electronic Sources (Web Publications)

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  6. How to Cite a Website in APA, MLA and Chicago in Any Paper

    Create Citation How to Cite a Website in APA, MLA and Chicago in Any Paper By Jennifer Betts Certified Teacher In Citations 9 Min read Website citations have become common in academic papers. So, it's essential to know how to cite a website in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

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  8. SCC Research Guides: APA Guide: Citing a Website Article or Page

    Citing a Website Article (APA) Format: Author(s).(Year, Month Day). Title of article in italics.Website Name. URL . Note: Cite an online source as a website only if no other type of source applies to it. For instance, many magazines and newspapers publish articles on their websites - in cases like this, you would cite the article as if it were an online magazines or newspaper article (not a ...

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    Type of citation Example citation; Reference List Citation: National Association of Social Workers. (2005). NASW standards for clinical social work in social work practice.

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    Webpages or website. This guide is based on the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th ed. It provides selected citation examples for common types of sources. For more detailed information consult directly a print copy of the style manual. Check out APA's Guide to what's new for APA 7.

  14. 4 Ways to Cite a Website

    1 Start your Works Cited entry with the author's name, if provided. If an individual author is listed for the web page you want to cite, type their last name first, followed by a comma, then their first name. Place a period at the end of the name. [1] Example: Claymore, Crystal.

  15. How to Cite a Website in MLA

    An MLA website citation includes the author's name, the title of the page (in quotation marks), the name of the website (in italics), the publication date, and the URL (without "https://"). If the author is unknown, start with the title of the page instead.

  16. Webpage on a Website References

    Home Style and Grammar Guidelines References Examples Webpage on a Website References This page contains reference examples for webpages, including the following: Webpage on a news website Comment on a webpage on a news website Webpage on a website with a government agency group author Webpage on a website with an organizational group author

  17. How to Cite a Website and Online/Electronic Resources

    Referencing Harvard referencing The pages outlines examples of how to cite websites and media sources using the Harvard Referencing method. What are electronic sources? An electronic source is any information source in digital format. The library subscribes to many electronic information resources in order to provide access for students.

  18. Citing a Website in APA

    If you're wondering how to cite a website in APA, use the structure below. Structure: Author Last Name, First initial. (Year, Month Date Published). Title of web page. Name of Website. URL Example of an APA format website: Austerlitz, S. (2015, March 3). How long can a spinoff like 'Better Call Saul' last?

  19. Reference a Website in Harvard Style

    To reference a website in Harvard style, include the name of the author or organization, the year of publication, the title of the page, the URL, and the date on which you accessed the website. In-text citation example. (Google, 2020) Reference template. Author surname, initial. ( Year) Page Title.

  20. How to Cite in APA Format (7th edition)

    The in-text citation can take two forms: parenthetical and narrative. Both types are generated automatically when citing a source with Scribbr's APA Citation Generator. Parenthetical citation: According to new research … (Smith, 2020). Narrative citation: Smith (2020) notes that … Multiple authors and corporate authors

  21. Cite Sources

    Citing sources adds credibility to your argument.Citing is proof that you did research and that your conclusions are based on reliable information. It helps you avoid plagiarism by giving credit to the people whose ideas and research you used to make your argument.. Citing shares the sources you discovered by presenting information about your sources in a standardized format that any scholar ...

  22. MLA In-Text Citations: The Basics

    General Guidelines The source information required in a parenthetical citation depends (1) upon the source medium (e.g. print, web, DVD) and (2) upon the source's entry on the Works Cited page. Any source information that you provide in-text must correspond to the source information on the Works Cited page.

  23. Quick guide to Harvard referencing (Cite Them Right)

    There are different versions of the Harvard referencing style. This guide is a quick introduction to the commonly-used Cite Them Right version. You will find further guidance available through the OU Library on the Cite Them Right Database. For help and support with referencing and the full Cite Them Right guide, have a look at the Library's ...

  24. How to cite a government website page in APA (7th ed.)

    In-Text Citation (Paraphrase): (Government Author or name of Government Agency if no author listed, Year or n.d. if no date is given) In-Text Citation (Quotation): (Government Author or name of Government Agency, Year or n.d. if no date given, page or paragraph number [if available]) Example. In-Text Citation (Paraphrase):

  25. How to Cite a Journal Article

    In an MLA Works Cited entry for a journal article, the article title appears in quotation marks, the name of the journal in italics—both in title case. List up to two authors in both the in-text citation and the Works Cited entry. For three or more, use "et al.". MLA format. Author last name, First name.