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APA Guidelines

Common misconceptions about citations

One of the most common problems about citations is what should be cited and how to cite sources. A good rule of thumb is to always cite any idea that is not your own.  

This guide will provide basic information and tools on APA citation rules.                     

Citation Rules

This section will review APA guidelines for in-text citations and reference format for books, articles, and dissertations.  

  • One Author General Format 
    • In-text citation (paraphrase) 
      • (author surname, year)
  • In-text citation (quotation) 
    • (author surname, year, page number) 


  • Author surname, First initial, Second initial. (year). Book title: Subtitle. Place of Publication: Publisher.
    • Example: 
      • In-text citation (paraphrase): 
        • (Halpern, 2011)
  • In-text citation (quotation): 
    • (Halpern, 2011, p. 37)
  • Reference
    • Halpern, M. (2011). Healing Your Life: Lessons on the Path of Ayurveda. Twin Lakes, WI: Lotus Press. 


Edited Book with No Arthur

The Editors will be used in the text with the date. For reference, the editors will be used in addition to adding Eds in parentheses after the name and before the year published. 

  • In-text citation 
    • (Dobbs & Sittler, 2016)


Dobbs, A. W., & Sittler, R. L. (Eds.). (2016). Integrating LibGuides into Library Websites. 

Lanham, WA: Rowman & Littlefield. 

More than on than one author 


In-text citation 

  • Two authors 
    • (Smith & Jackson, 2017)
  • Three to five authors 
    • The first citation you would list all of the surnames of the authors with the date
    • (Smith, Jackson, Carter, Nixon, & Regan, 2017) 
      • In subsequent citations use the first author's last name followed by "et al.")
      • (Smith et al., 2017)


  • List all authors by name and initials in the reference list. 
  • Smith, M., Jackson, W., Carter, N., Nixon, J. R., & Regan, R. (2017). The State of the Union. Whittier, CA: University Press. 



When citing sources that you find from a Point-of-Care Database (e.g. Dynamed, UptoDate) treat the record as if it was a website. You may need to include a retrieval date if the information you viewed is likely to change over time.   

  • Authors: If the entry does not list the author(s) names, you should use the corporate author (i.e. Dynamed).
  • Dates: Look for the last updated or last revised date usually posted at the top or bottom of the record
  • Retrieved: Include the date you accessed the information

General Format 

  • In-Text Citation
    • (Author Surname, Year/last updated) 
  • References: 
    • Personal or Corporate Author. (Last update if not known, put n.d.). 
      • Title of a specific document. Publisher. Retrieved date from URL database homepage.

DynaMed Plus


  • Citing a specific record: 
    • DynMed. (2018). Homeopathy for Asthma. Ipswich, MA): EBSCO Information Services. Retrieved 
  • In-text citation: 
    • (DynaMed, 2018). 


General Format 
  • In-Text Citation 
    • (World Health Organization, 2017)
  • World Health Organization. (2017). Unsung heroes on World Polio Day. Retrieved from 

Journal Citation 

Print Journal 
  • In-text citation
    • (Author/Authors, year)
  • Example
    • (Loprinzi, 2015)
  • Author. (year). Title of the article. Title of the periodical. volume number(issue), pages. 
    • Loprinzi, P. D. (2015). Yoga participation and all-cause mortality: National prospective cohort study. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 23(6), 757-58. 

Electronic Journal 

  • Author. (year). Title of the article. Title of the periodical. volume number(issue), pages. doi number 

doi number is a digital object identifier (DOI) this provides a  stable, long-lasting link for online articles. They are unique to the document and consist of a long alphanumeric code. 

  • Example 
    • Rao, R. M., Amritanshu, R., Vinutha, H. T., Vaishnaruby, S., Deepashree, S., Megha, M., & ... Ajaikumar, B. S. (2017). Role of Yoga in Cancer Patients: Expectations, Benefits, and Risks: A Review. Indian Journal Of Palliative Care23(3), 225-230. doi:10.4103/IJPC.IJPC_107_17

Audio-Visual Media 

The basic format for citing video: 


Author or Producer Last Name, First Name Initial, Director Last Name, First Name Initial. (Date of publication).Title of the video/ movie. Country of Origin: Studio or distributor.

Online video (ex. Youtube): 

Author or Producer Last Name, First Name Initial. (Year, Month Date). Title of the video. Retrieved from URL. 

Figures and Images 

Figures and images need to be cited to avoid plagiarism. This includes any images and figures that retrieved online (ex. websites, databases, image searches).

Citation guidelines for figures/ images in a research paper


 Figure#. Caption (A brief explanation of the figure and how it connects to the paper. The caption information should allow the image to stand alone). Title of the work. (Date of last update{Year, Month Day}). Retrieved from URL. 

Online Image


Artist's last name, artist's initials. (Year) Title of Work. Retrieved from URL.