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APA Style 7th Edition Resource Guide

A resource to help you with your APA citations.

What is an APA Reference and How Do You Create One?

Every reference entry includes 4 pieces of information that answer the following questions, in this order:

  • Author - Who wrote or is responsible for the work?
  • Date - When was the work published?
  • Title - What is the work called?
  • Source - Where is the work located?

Creating a Reference Entry in 4 Steps:

1.  Determine what type of work are you citing – article, book, webpage?

2.  Use the 4 reference elements (author, date, title, source) to identify the information you need from the work to include in the citation.

3.  Look up an example on the APA Style website using the links in the Reference Examples box below.

4.  Follow the formatting in the example.

Reference Examples (bookmark these links!)

The APA website provides 100+ examples of references for all kinds of sources. The #1 librarian tip for APA users is: Find an example that matches, or is close to, the content you want to cite, and model the formatting of your reference on it!

Reference examples are organized by the following four categories:

  • Textual Works
  • Data Sets
  • Audiovisual Media
  • Online Media

Use the links below to find the category of the source you want to cite, then locate the group and the type. For example, if I'm citing a scholarly journal article, I'll click the Textual Works link, go to Periodicals, and then to the Journal Article References link.

References Links (from the official APA Style website)

Common Reference List Errors

Here are some of the most common formatting errors. See the links below for guidance on how to address these errors.

  • The most common error is incorrect capitalization of article titles - see the sentence case link for capitalization guidance..
  • Incorrect use of italics in titles.
  • Incorrect formatting of the volume, issue, and page numbers for a journal article.
  • Not citing the group author responsible for a webpage or website.
  • Using a database link rather than a DOI in a reference entry (some instructors may want you to include it; check their preferences).
  • Incorrect DOI formatting.

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