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Citing Sources: APA Examples

A quick guide to citations

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APA Citations

The current version of APA is the 7th Edition. See chapter 8 - 11 for in-text citation and examples of reference formats. You can find more details for APA 7 citations at the Purdue OWL. 

APA Basics

APA uses in-text citations and a reference list at the end.

In-text Citations

In-text citations include the author’s last name and the year of publication in parentheses, i.e.: (Tolkien, 1981).

You can also use the author’s name in your own text, in which case you only need to use the date in the parentheses, i.e.:

According to Tolkien (1981), certain aspects of truth are best received through myth, or story.

If you use a direct quotation, you must include a page number:

 “I believe that legends and myths are largely made of 'truth', and indeed present aspects of it that can only be received in this mode” (Tolkien, 1981, p. 147).

Multiple authors in a parenthetical citation are connected by an ampersand (and for multiple authors with the same last name, include a first initial):

“Tolkien experienced words as a maddening liquor, a phonic ambrosia, tastes of an exquisite, rapturous, higher world” (P. Zaleski & C. Zaleski, 2015, p. 24).

Reference List

Capitalization rules:

Capitalize all major words in newspaper, magazine, and journal names.

For books, chapters, articles, or web pages, only capitalize the first letter and the first letter after a colon or a dash (i.e. the first letter of a subtitle), and any proper noun.

Reference List Examples

Printed Book:

Author, F. M. (Publication year). Title of book: Subtitle. Publisher. or URL (if available)

Tolkien, J. R. (1955). The return of the king. George Allen & Unwin.

Book with Editor(s) or Translator(s):

Author, F. M. (Publication year). Title of book: Subtitle. F. M. Editor (Ed.). Publisher. or URL (if available)

Tolkien, J. R. (2013). The letters of J.R.R. Tolkien. H. Carpenter (Ed.). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Note: if the books has a translator, place the translator’s name in the same spot and the same format as the editor, with (trans.) after it. If the book has no author other than the editor, use the editor’s name like an author’s name (at the start of the citation), with (Ed.) after it.


F. M.
(Publication year). 
 Publisher name. or URL (if available)

Duriez, C. (2015). Bedeviled : Lewis, Tolkien and the Shadow of Evil. IVP Books. Retrieved from

Book Chapter/Section from Anthology:

M. (Publication year). Chapter title. In F. Editor (Ed.), Title of book
 (pp. #-#). Publisher. or URL (if available)

Lewin, K. (1999). Group decision and social change. In M. Gold (Ed.). The complete social scientist: A Kurt Lewin reader (pp. 265-284). American Psychological Association.

Print Journal

Author, F. M. (Publication year). Article title. Title of JournalVolume(Issue), #-#.

Hirsch, B. (2014). After the “end of all things”: The long return home to the Shire. Tolkien Studies, 11(11), 77-107.

Online Journal with DOI:

Author, F. M. (Publication year). Article title. Title of JournalVolume(Issue), #-#.

Munro, R. (2014). The art of the Lord of the Rings: A defense of the aesthetic. Religion & the Arts, 18(5), 636-652.

Online Newspaper Article:

Author, F. M. (Year, Month day of publication). Specific webpage or article title. Newspaper Website. URL

Miller, B. (2020, August 28). How 'survivorship bias' can cause you to make mistakes. BBC.

Note: if no date information is available, use (n.d.).

Webpage on website with a group author:

Group Name. (Year, Month day). Specific webpage name. URL

Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. (2014). What is the Healthy People 2030 framework?

Note: if no date information is available, use (n.d.).

Clip Art or Stock Image:

Creator, F. M. (Year). Title of Image [format]. Source. URL

Luebbert, D. W. (Artist). (2012, April 15). Tolkien Daydreams [Digital Image]. Deviant Art.


Author, F. M. [@Handle]. (Year, Month Day of publication). Entire tweet [Tweet]. Twitter. URL

Olsen, C. [@Olsen]. (2015, August 8). I've come to the part of @JohnGarthWriter's book where Tolkien's friends are just about to die. V moving and painful. #whatimreading [Tweet]. Twitter.

YouTube Video or Other Streaming Video:

Author, F. M. [YouTube handle]. (Year, Month Day). Title of video [Video]. YouTube. URL

Grey, C. G. [CGP Grey]. (2014, December 17). The Lord of the Rings mythology explained (part 1) [Video]. YouTube.

Note: if the poster's real name is not available, use their YouTube handle instead, without brackets.

Personal Interview:

An interview is not considered a recoverable source, so it is not included in your APA reference list. You can cite it in your text, however, as follows:

(C. Tolkien, personal communication, August 14, 2015)

Cochrane Review:

A Cochrane Review is cited similarly to an electronic journal article without volume and issue, including DOI.

Author, F. M. (Publication year). Article title. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. DOI as

Arrowsmith, V.A., & Taylor  R. (2014). Removal of nail polish and finger rings to prevent surgical infection. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.

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