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APA Boot Camp

APA Style 7th edition (2020)

References for APA Style 7th Edition Papers

Reference Quick Guide is a downloadable PDF from and gives information about

  • Journal articles and other periodicals (Section 10.1 of 7th edition Manual)
  • Books and reference works (Section 10.2 of 7th edition Manual)
  • Edited book chapters and entries in reference works (Section 10.3 of 7th edition Manual)

See Basic information below relating to References. See the APA Style Manual for details and additional information and the APA website on References.

Topic Description Notes/Website

References begin on a new page following the text of the document

Center the word "References" in bold font at the top of the page

Spacing: Double-spaced

Special formatting: Use Hanging Indent, 0.5" (in MS Word, Home →Paragraph→Special)

4 Elements or Sections of a Reference

Author      (who)
Date         (when)
Title          (what)
Source     (where) 

Sections 9.7 - 9.12
Sections 9.13 - 9.17
Sections 9.18 - 9.22
Sections 9.23 - 9.37

Periods used after each section of the Reference.
(after Author, after Date, after Title, after Source)

Do NOT use a period after a DOI or URL

Do use commas within each section as noted by

  • Between author's last name and initials
  • Between different author's names
  • Between journal title and volume number
  • Between journal issue and page numbers

Do NOT use commas between journal volume and issue numbers; use parentheses instead around issue number.

Do italicize punctuation marks that are in an italic reference element (within a book title).

Do NOT italicize punctuation between reference elements (after italic book title).

Section 9.5

One author:    Author, A. A.        

Two authors:  Author, A. A., & Author, B.B.        

3-20 authors: Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C.C.
   use inverted last names and initials for up to 20 authors

21 or more authors:  include first 19 authors names/initials, insert an ellipsis (three dots separated 
   by spaces. . .), and then the final author's name. No ampersand is used. 

See APA Manual Sections 9.7 - 9.12 for more detailed information on formatting authors, capitalization, editors, group authors, and no authors

•  Comma after author last name

•  One space after each initial

•  Ampersand before the
last author's name for 2-20 authors


Refers to Date of Publication and typically is only the year (noted within parentheses)

  •  year, month, and day (an exact date, e.g., a blog entry, a newspaper date)
  •  year and month         
  •  year and season        
  •  range of dates (e.g., range of years, range of exact dates)

See APA Manual Sections 9.13 - 9.17 for more detailed information.


(2020, March 15)
(2020, March)
(2020, Spring/Summer)


General instructions for titles include
  Italicize and use sentence case  (e.g., My book about Africa: Many memories)
     (initial capital letter, capital letter of subtitle, capitalize any proper nouns) for works 
     that stand on their own (are not part of a greater whole or entity)

Books Journal titles Videos / Films
Webpages Websites Dissertations / Theses
Data sets Reports Podcasts / Social media

  Do not italicize (use regular font) for works are part of a greater whole or entity, like

Book chapters (edited) Journal article titles Podcast episodes
TV episodes    

See APA Manual Sections 9.18 - 9.22 for more detailed information on definition of a title, format of title elements, series and multivolume works, bracketed descriptions, and works without titles.         


Source refers to where users can retrieve the noted work.

  • Works that stand alone (whole book, report, etc.)
  • Works that are part of a greater whole (journal articles, edited book chapters)
  • Works associated with a particular location (such as conference presentations)

Book references no longer show the "location" of publication office, but still show the Publisher name.

DOIs and URLs, if applicable, may also be used as part of the source information.
   DOI:   digital object identifier
   URL:  uniform resource locator

  • Do not use a period at the end of a DOI or a URL.
  • Do not use "Retrieved from" with DOIs. 
  • DOIs should be in the format of
  • URLs generally do not use "Retrieved from," but it should be used in some instances. See Retrieval date information in APA Publication Manual, pages 290, 319, 325, 328, 347, 349, 350, and 352.
  • Shortened URLs are optional but permissible for references with a long or complex URL. See Section 9.36 for details.

See details and additional information at the APA Publication Manual, Sections 9.23 - 9.37

See APA Manual, Chapter 10 for templates and source component examples.

Latin abbreviations and special punctuation

Certain Latin abbreviations may be commonly used, always appear within parentheses, and may require particular punctuation, such as a period and/or comma (these are highlighted below).
See APA Manual, Section 6.29.

Latin Abbreviation
(in parentheses)

cf. compare
e.g.,  for example,
, etc. , and so forth
i.e.,  that is, 
viz., namely,
vs. versus or against
v. versus
(special usage, Court case in reference list and in all in-text citations)
et al. and others
(use in narrative and parenthetical citations)



See APA Manual 7th edition, Chapters 9 and 10 for information about References. 
See below links below to the website for online information about References.

See APA Publication Manual Sections 10.1-10.8 for additional information. 
See for online examples of Textual Works.

Textual Works include

  • Periodicals
    • Journal, magazine, and newspaper articles
    • Blog posts and blog comments
    • UpToDate article
  • Books and Reference Works
    • Books
    • Diagnostic manuals
    • Children's book or other illustrated book
    • Classroom course pack material
    • Religious works
  • Edited Book Chapters and Entries in Reference Works
    • Edited book chapter
    • Dictionary entry
    • Wikipedia entry
  • Reports and Gray Literature
    • ‚ÄčReport by a government agency
    • Report with individual authors
    • Brochure
    • Ethics code
    • Fact sheet
    • ISO standard
    • Press release
    • White paper
  • Conference Presentations and Proceedings
    • Conference presentation
    • Conference proceeding
  • Dissertations and Theses
    • Published dissertations and theses
    • Unpublished dissertations and theses
  • Unpublished and informally published works
    • ERIC database article
    • Preprint article

See APA Publication Manual Section 10.9 for additional information. 
For information on Software and Tests, see APA Publication Manual Sections 10.10 and 10.11.
See for online examples of Data Sets.

  • Data Sets
    • Data set
    • Toolbox


See APA Publication Manual Sections 10.12 -10.14 for additional information. 
See for online examples of Audiovisual Media.

  • Audiovisual Media
    • Artwork
    • Clip art or stock image
    • Film and television
    • Musical score
    • Online course or MOOC
    • PowerPoint slides or lecture notes
    • Radio broadcast
    • TED Talk
    • Transcript of an audiovisual work
    • YouTube

See APA Publication Manual Sections 10.15 -10.16 for additional information. 
See for online examples of Online Media.

  • Social Media
    • Facebook
    • Instagram
    • LinkedIn
    • Online forum (e.g., Reddit)
    • TikTok
    • Twitter
  • Webpages and Websites
    • Webpage on a website
    • Clinical practice references for nurses
    • Open Educational Resources (OER)
    • Whole website
Last updated on Mar 3, 2023 11:41 AM