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APA Style, 7th edition - Citing Sources

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Paper formatting, apa checklist, apa 7th student & professional templates, sample apa papers.

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When writing a paper using APA style, you must adhere to very specific style rules. These include:

  • Double space with 1" margins on all sides.
  • Many font choices are acceptable. Use the same font throughout the paper. Suggested fonts include: Calibra 11 pt., Arial 11 pt., Lucida Sans Unicode 10 pt., Times New Roman 12 pt., Georgia 11 pt., Computer Modern 10 pt.  MORE INFORMATION.
  • While page headers are no longer needed for student papers (no more Running head!) , each page should be numbered in the header, flush right.  Numbering starts with the title page.
  • Paper's sections:  Title Page, Main Body, References.  Other sections include abstract, appendices.  These are not always required or necessary. Check your assignment and/or ask your professor.
  • Title of paper (in bold), author's name (your name), institutional affiliation (Regis College), course number and name, instructor name, assignment due date centered on title page are the basic elements on the title page.  MORE INFORMATION . 
  • Start the reference list after the body of the paper, on a new page, with the word References   bolded and centered at the top. 
  • Headings must conform to APA Style. MORE INFORMATION.
  • APA Style website- Paper Format

Topics covered:

  • Order of pages
  • Title Page Setup
  • Page Header
  • Line Spacing
  • Paragraph Alignment & Indentation
  • Accessibility 

Use this checklist to proofread your paper once it is complete. 

  • APA Checklist 7th edition

Use the below templates to get started with formatting your papers in APA in Word. Make sure to check with your professor if you should be using the professional or student versions!

  • Regis College Library Student Template For student-formatted APA 7th edition papers. This template was created by Regis College Library librarians.
  • Regis College Library Professional Template For professional-formatted APA 7th edition papers. This template was created by Regis College Library librarians.
  • Scribbr APA Format for Papers- Templates From Scribbr: Goes over how to format your paper, FREE downloads to templates for the student and professional versions, as well as a video in how to use the templates in Word. Please note: there is a logo down the bottom of each page in the downloaded templates that will need to be removed before submitting your paper!

APA has sample papers available on page 50 of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association , 7th ed.

Be sure to check with your professor on which format version to use, since the format for professional papers (those submitted to a journal) is different than the student format.

  • APA Style Sample Papers You can view these sample papers with helpful annotations or without.

Student papers typically do not require an abstract ( see p. 30 APA 7th manual).  Check your assignment or clarify with your professor if you have questions about whether an abstract is necessary.

An abstract is written after your paper is completed.  It is typically one paragraph of 300 words or less that summarizes your paper and provides enough information so that the reader can decide whether it would be useful to read the rest of the paper.  It includes the purpose of the study, the design of your study (methods), results or findings, and conclusions. In other words, an abstract describes what you set out to do, how you did it, your results, and your conclusions based on the results.

There are different abstract formats for different types of studies.  These include empirical studies, literature reviews, theory-oriented papers, methodological papers, and case studies.  Each of these is discussed in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association,  (6th ed.), on pp. 25- 27.

If you include an abstract, begin on a new page right after the title page (the second page).   On the first line of the abstract page, center and bold the word Abstract  (do not use italics, underlining, or quotation marks). Begin your abstract paragraph on the next line.  Do not indent the paragraph.

MORE INFORMATION

You may want to use appendices in a long paper such as a term project or dissertation. Rules to keep in mind:

  • The appendix appears after the reference list.
  • Each appendix should be labeled.  Name the first appendix Appendix A, the second Appendix B, etc.
  • The appendices should appear in the order that they are mentioned in your paper.
  • Start each appendix on a new page.
  • More detail about formatting appendices can be found in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.) starting on p. 38.
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General Guidelines

  • Make 1 inch margins on the top, bottom, and sides.
  • The first word in every paragraph should be indented one half inch.
  • sans serif: 11-point Calibri or 11-point Arial
  • serif: 12-point Times New Roman, 11-point Georgia
  • Double space the entire research paper, including the title page.
  • Left align the text.

APA Paper Components

Every paper should include at least four main sections:

Reference List

Student papers do not typically include a running head, an author note, or an abstract, unless specifically requested by the instructor.

A title page is always required in all APA formatted papers. Students should follow the student title page guidelines, unless their instructor requires them to use the professional version. 

The student title page should include:

  • paper title;
  • author(s) name(s);
  • author affiliation (i.e. the department and the name of the university);
  • course number and full name;
  • instructor name;
  • assignment due date;
  • page number (start numbering the title page from 1).
  • APA Blog - Title Page Setup
  • Student Title Page Guide APA provides a student title page guide to assist students in creating their title pages.

If requested by the instructor, students may need to include an abstract, especially for capstone projects.

The abstract should be one paragraph of between 150 and 250 words. It is not indented. The section label "Abstract" is centered at the top of the page and it is in bold title case.

Text (Main Body)

The text of the paper should start on a new page after the title page (and abstract, if included). On the first page of the text, you should repeat the paper title in title case, bold, and centered.

Use double-spacing throughout the paper, left align the text and indent the first line of each paragraph by one tab key (usually set to 0.5 in.). 

Throughout the body, in-text citations are used and they include the author’s/authors’ name(s) and the publication year, followed by the page number of the text cited if applicable (see the In-Text Citations section).

Organizing a Paper with Headings

In order to effectively organized the ideas in your paper, you can use headings to separate each different section. APA recommends the use of a maximum of five possible headings. Not all papers must include headings.

  • APA Blog - Headings

The Reference List appears on a new page after the end of the paper.

  • Center and bold the title “References” (do not include quotation marks, underline, or italicize this title).
  • Alphabetize and double-space all entries.
  • Use a hanging indent for all entries (the first line of each reference is flush left and subsequent lines are indented by 0.5 in).
  • Every article/source mentioned in the paper and used in your study should be referenced and have an entry.

Sample Paper

Sample paper and template.

This is a Word office version of a sample APA student paper, and it can also be used as a template for formatting your paper.

  • APA 7 Student paper template
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APA Style: Basics

Guidelines: paper format.

The APA Style website includes a great section on Paper Format This link opens in a new window . The 7th edition of APA Style has two types of papers: student papers and professional papers. Please consult your assignment or reach out to your professor or instructor to determine which paper format you should use.

For more information see the above page or the sections linked below:

  • Order of pages This link opens in a new window
  • Title page This link opens in a new window
  • Font This link opens in a new window
  • Page header This link opens in a new window
  • Line spacing This link opens in a new window
  • Margins This link opens in a new window
  • Paragraph alignment & indentation This link opens in a new window
  • Tables setup This link opens in a new window
  • Figures setup This link opens in a new window
  • Headings This link opens in a new window
  • Accessibility This link opens in a new window
  • Numbers and Statistics Guide This link opens in a new window

Sample Papers

The APA Style website also includes Sample Papers This link opens in a new window . 

APA Style Sample Papers

  • Annotated Student Sample Paper [links to PDF] This link opens in a new window
  • Student Sample Paper [links to DOCX] This link opens in a new window
  • Annotated Professional Sample Paper [links to PDF] This link opens in a new window
  • Professional Sample Paper [links to DOCX] This link opens in a new window

SNHU OWC Sample Papers

  • APA 7th Edition Sample Paper (SNHU OWC) [pdf] This link opens in a new window APA 7th Edition Sample Paper from the Academic Support Center
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APA Style (7th ed.): Citation Guide

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Formatting a Paper in APA

Apa paper visual guide.

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Sample Student Paper

  • Sample APA Paper

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  • Paper Formatting
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APA Basic Formatting Rules for Student Papers

The following guidelines are the basic formatting rules outlined in the  APA Publication Manual  7th edition. If your instructor sets different requirements, always use your instructor's guidelines first.

  • clearly legible, regular-sized font
  • recommendations: 12pt Times New Roman, 11pt Arial, 11pt Calibri, 10pt Lucida Sans Unicode, 11pt Georgia
  • double spaced throughout all parts of the paper including title, headings, and footnotes
  • 1-inch margins on all sides
  • Indent the first line of each paragraph by 1/2-inch (tab)
  • left-justified for the body of the paper

Running Head & Page Numbers:

  • not required to include shortened version of the title for student papers- unless requested by your instructor
  • include the page number in the top right corner of all pages

APA Title Page for Student Papers

Page number:.

  • include the page number in the top right margin. (It will be 1 for the Title Page. Continue numbering throughout the paper and References page.)

Heading about a 1/3 of the way down the page:

  • Paper Title : bold, centered
  • Author : your name
  • Institutional Affiliation : Lone Star College- Online
  • Course : your course number and the name of the course (ex. PSYC 2301: General Psychology)
  • Instructor : your instructor's name (ex- Prof. Jane Smith)
  • Due Date:  Month day, year format (ex- January 1, 2024)

APA Headings within the Body of the Paper

Paper title:.

  • include on the first line of the first page of the body of your paper
  • bold and centered

Headings and Sub-headings (use when needed)

  • APA uses a hierarchy of five levels for headings within the paper
  • short paper may not need headings at all

References Page Formatting

The following guidelines are the basic formatting rules outlined in the APA Publication Manual  7th edition. If your instructor sets different requirements, always use your instructor's guidelines first.

  • needs to start on a new page following the end of your paper
  • include the title References centered on the first line of the page
  • everything after the title is left-justified
  • listed in alphabetical order by the first part of the citation (usually the author)
  • double spaced throughout all parts
  • Each citation should have a hanging indent- or it should start at the left margin and then have all lines after it indented by 1/2-inch

Click on the information circles for tips on how to use Microsoft Word to format your paper in APA Style.

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  • Last Updated: Feb 15, 2024 3:18 PM
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APA 7th Edition Citation Guide

  • APA 7th Edition Home

Formatting the Paper Itself

  • When and What to Cite
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  • Step 1: Author (Names)
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APA Style Checklist

This citation guide is based on The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association  (7th ed., 2020). The contents are accurate to the best of our knowledge.

Content in this guide was copied with permission from Bethel University (TN) Library .

apa paper format without title page

The following formatting rules for the paper are strongly recommended:

  • Text should be double-spaced.
  • Margins should be 1" on all sides (top, bottom, left, right).
  • Recommended fonts and font sizes are: Times New Roman 11, Calibri 11, Arial 11, Lucida Sans Unicode 10, Georgia 11, Computer Modern 10, and similar.
  • One (1) space should be used after the period at the end of a sentence.
  • Use double quotation marks to introduce a new, specialized, or novel term the first time it is used.
  • Abstract (may not be required on academic papers)

From the APA Style Blog

Paper Format

Elements of the Title Page

  • Title of the paper
  • Author's name
  • Institutional affiliation
  • Course number and name
  • Instructor name

Click here to see the APA Style Sample Annotated Student Paper .

Click here to see the APA Style Sample Annotated Professional Paper.

For more information, also visit the APA sample paper in Purdue Writing Lab.

Why Time is the Biggest Reason Things Don't Get Done

Grayson P. Finkleton

UT Southwestern Medical Center

COR 101: Course Name

Dr. Professor C. Name

September 9, 2020

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Home / Guides / Citation Guides / APA Format / Formatting an APA title page

Formatting an APA title page

The title page is a requirement for all APA papers. The primary role of the title page is to present just that: the title. But that’s only the beginning of what is actually required for a properly formatted APA title page. This is the first chance a writer has to truly engage with the reader.

For students, the title page also lets people know which class, professor, and institution the text was written for. For professional authors, the title page is an opportunity to share any affiliations or conflicts of interest that might be present.

APA Style recognizes two different ways to format a title page. One is for student papers and the other is for professional papers. This guide will examine the difference and provide real-life examples of both.

The information provided below comes from the 7 th edition of the APA’s Publication Manual . You can read more about title page elements in Sections 2.1 – 2.8.

Here’s a run-through of everything this page includes:

The difference between a professional title page and a student title page in APA

Elements of an apa style title page, apa formatting title page example, conclusion: formatting a title page in apa 7.

Both student and professional title pages require a title, author, and an affiliation. Both types of title page also require the same basic formatting, including 1-inch indentations on all sides and a page number in the top right corner.

The primary difference is that professional title pages also require an author note and a running head. However, some professors do ask that you provide some of these elements in student papers. It’s a good idea to know how to format them just in case.

Student title page APA

An APA title page for any paper being submitted for a class, degree, or thesis is all about the basics. Here are the elements that should be included in a student title page :

  • Title of your paper
  • Byline (author or authors)
  • Affiliation (department and university)
  • Course name and course number
  • Instructor name

Page number

Your professor or institution might have their own formatting requirements. When writing a paper for a class, the first rule is to always pay attention to the instructions.

Professional title page APA

A professional title page skips the class info and due date, but it includes:

  • Affiliation (division and/or organization)
  • Author note
  • Running head

The author note and running head are generally only required for professional papers. However, some professors might ask that you include one or both of them. Be sure to check the assignment instructions before submitting.

The title of your paper is really important. This is where the author needs to simultaneously inform and engage the reader without being overly wordy.

An effective title will:

  • Engage the reader
  • Concisely explain the main topic of research
  • Concisely explain any relevant variables or theoretical issues

The paper title should be placed three or four lines down from the top margin of the page. It should be presented in bold, title case, and centered on the page.

Author/Byline

The correct way to display the author’s name is first name, middle initial, and last name. The most important thing is to prevent the possibility of mistaken identity. After all, there are a lot of papers published every year, and it’s possible that someone else has the same name as you do.

For all author bylines in APA, all licenses and degrees are omitted (e.g., Dr., Professor, PhD, RN, etc.).

If your paper has multiple authors, then they should all be listed in the same way, in order of their contributions. All authors should be on the same line, unless more lines are required.

Here’s an example of a properly formatted byline for a paper with two authors:

Cassandra M. Berkman and Wilhelm K. Jackson

Affiliation

The affiliation element is where you identify the place where the work was conducted or who it was conducted for. This is almost always a university or institution. In some cases, there are multiple affiliations for one author, or multiple authors with different affiliations.

Academic affiliations

Academic affiliations include schools, universities, and teaching hospitals. The affiliation line should include the specific department followed by the name of the institution. There is no need to include a location for academic affiliations.

Here is an example of what a basic academic affiliation line should look like:

Department of Psychology, Colorado State University

Non-academic affiliations

Non-academic affiliations are anything that isn’t a school or university, which could be a hospital, laboratory, or just about any type of organization. The affiliation line for a non-academic organization should include the department or division, followed by the name and location of the organization. All elements should be separated by commas.

Here’s how it looks when put to use:

Vidant Health, Greenville, NC, United States

Course number and name (Student only)

Use the course number and course name as they appear on official university materials. Examples:

  • ENG 204: Modern English Literature
  • PSYC 2301: Research Methodology

Instructor name (Student papers only)

It’s important that you display your instructor’s name in their preferred way. With academics who have multiple degrees and positions, this isn’t something that you should guess at.

It is generally safe to use the course syllabus to see how they prefer to be listed. For example, some use the word “Professor” as their prefix, and many will have PhD, RN, or other type of professional designation.

Due date (Student papers only)

The due date should be presented in the day, month, and year format that is standard to your country.

The page number goes at the top right-hand side of the paper. This is one of the only elements that appears on every single page.

You can add running page numbers to your paper by double-clicking the header portion of the document or clicking the “Insert” tab. It will automatically insert page numbers into the rest of the document.

Author note (Professional papers only)

The author note is usually only required for professional papers. This is where additional data, disclaimers, conflicts of interest, and statements about funding are placed. In some cases, the author statement can be several pages long.

The author note is generally split into four paragraphs, including:

  • ORCID iD (a scientific/academic author ID)
  • Changes of Affiliation
  • Disclosures and Acknowledgments
  • Contact Information

Section 2.7 of the Publication Manual has even more information on how to structure these elements for a professional paper.

Running Head (Professional papers only)

While some student papers might require a running head, this is something that is typically only for papers being submitted for publication. This is an abbreviated version of your title that appears at the top of every page to help readers identify it. The running title is particularly useful especially in print versions of journals and publications.

The running head does not have to use the same words as they appear in your title. Instead, try to re-work your paper’s main idea into a shortened form.

For example, if your paper’s title is:

“A Mystery of Style: Exploring the Formatting Mechanics of the Running Head According  to APA Style 7th Edition”

Then your abbreviated title can be something like:

“RUNNING HEAD IN APA 7”

“FORMATTING THE RUNNING HEAD”

The idea is to convey only the most important aspects of your title. The running head should be entered in the page header, flush left against the margin, and presented in all-capital letters.

The APA suggests a maximum length of 50 characters (including spaces and punctuation) for a running head. If your title is already 50 characters and under, then you can use the whole thing as the running head.

Next, let’s have a look at an example of what a real APA title page looks like when it’s all put together.

Student title page formatting example

APA style student title page example

Professional title page formatting example

APA-format-professional-title-page

All papers written according to APA Style should have a properly formatted title page. Making sure that the title page elements are accurate and informative will help people access your work. It is also the first opportunity that you have as the author to establish credibility and engage the reader.

For more information on the basic elements of an APA paper, check out Chapter 2 of the Publication Manual or our guide on APA format .

Published October 28, 2020.

APA Formatting Guide

APA Formatting

  • Annotated Bibliography
  • Block Quotes
  • et al Usage
  • In-text Citations
  • Multiple Authors
  • Paraphrasing
  • Page Numbers
  • Parenthetical Citations
  • Reference Page
  • Sample Paper
  • APA 7 Updates
  • View APA Guide

Citation Examples

  • Book Chapter
  • Journal Article
  • Magazine Article
  • Newspaper Article
  • Website (no author)
  • View all APA Examples

An APA title page provides the details of the paper, such as the title of the paper, author name, and author affiliation. APA title pages have two formats—one for professional papers and one for student papers.

The elements to be added on the title page of a professional paper (in order of appearance) are:

  • Page number and running head: These elements appear in the header section. The page number appears at the top-right corner, whereas the running head appears at the top-left corner. If the title is too long, the running head is shortened to less than 50 characters.
  • Title of the paper: It provides information about the paper. It is aligned center and set in bold.
  • Names of the authors: It gives the names of the contributors to the paper and is aligned center.
  • Affiliations of the authors: It gives the department and university details of the authors.
  • Author note: It gives extra information about the authors.

In a student paper, the following details are included on the title page:

  • Page number: This appears in the top-right corner of the header section.
  • Title of the paper: It gives the reader an idea of the information in the paper. It appears in title case and bold. It is center-aligned.
  • Names of the authors: The names of the contributors are added here. This field is also called the by-line.
  • Affiliations of the authors: It includes the names of the authors’ departments and universities.
  • Name of the course: The name of the course for which the paper is written is included in this field.
  • Name of the instructor: Unlike the professional paper, the instructor’s name is included in a student paper.
  • Due date of the assignment: The due date of the assignment is added here. The format is “Month Day, Year” (e.g., August 22, 2017).

The title page information for APA is different for a professional paper and a student paper. As a student, you need to include the following details in the same order on the title page of your student paper.

  • Page number: This appears in the header section. Set the page number in the top-right corner of the header.
  • Title of the paper: Set it in title case and bold. Align it to the center.
  • Names of the authors: Provide the names of the contributors. This field is also called the by-line.
  • Affiliations of the authors: Include your department and university name.
  • Name of the course: Provide the name of the course and course number for which the paper is written.
  • Name of the instructor: Add the instructor’s name. There is no rigid rule on how to set the instructor’s name. You can set it according to the instructor’s preference.
  • Due date of the assignment: Add the due date of the assignment. The format should be “Month Day, Year” (e.g., August 23, 2021).

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APA Citation and Paper Formatting Guide (APA 7th Edition): When Information Is Missing

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Additional Resources

If no date is provided, use the initials n.d. where you would normally put the date.

Also use the initials n.d. if the date of content is difficult to determine, such as on a Wikipedia page.

Occasionally an item may not have a title. If you are citing something with no identified title, write a description of the item placed in square brackets. Put this description in brackets where you'd normally put the title.

If no author or creator is provided, start the citation with the title/name of the item you are citing instead. Follow the title/name of the item with the date of publication, and the continue with other citation details.

Note : an author/creator won't necessarily be a person's name. It may be an organization or corporation, for example Health Canada or a username on a site such a YouTube.

If no author or creator is provided,  use a shortened version of the title where you'd normally put the author's last name. 

If you're citing something which is part of a bigger work, like an article from a magazine, newspaper, journal or encyclopedia, or chapter or short story from a book, put the shortened title in quotation marks in your in-text citation. 

Example, paraphrasing: ("A Few Words," 2014)  

If you're citing an entire work, like a book, website, video, etc., italicize the shortened title in your in-text citation

Example, 'paraphrasing: ( A Few Words , 2014)

If and only if an item is signed as being created by Anonymous, use "Anonymous" where you'd normally put the author's name.

Alphabetical Order in References List

When putting works in alphabetical order, ignore initial articles such as "the," "a," or "an." For example the title The best of Canada would be alphabetized as if it started with the word best instead of the word The

If the title begins with a number, alphabetize it as if the number was spelled out. For example the title 5 ways to succeed in business would be alphabetized under F as if it had started with the word Five .

No Page Numbers

Page numbers may not be provided for some items, such as online materials. If this is the case:

References List

If a citation would normally include page numbers but none are provided, skip the page numbers in the citation.

In-Text Citation - Quoting Directly

When quoting directly in the text of your paper, you would normally include page numbers if they were given. If there are no page numbers given:

  • If there are numbered paragraphs, indicate the paragraph number instead of the page number with the word "para." before it. You may also count the paragraph number from the beginning of your source. For example: (Smith, 2012, para. 3)
  • If there are no numbered paragraphs, but there are headings, give the name of the heading, followed by the word "section" and the number of the paragraph within the section it is from. For example: (Smith, 2012, Discussion section, para. 3)

Have a question about missing reference information that isn't answered on this page? Take a look at this webpage, created by an authority on APA style, for more detailed information:

  • Missing Reference Information (American Psychological Association)
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  • Setting Up the APA Reference Page | Formatting & References (Examples)

Setting Up the APA Reference Page | Formatting & References (Examples)

Published on November 4, 2020 by Raimo Streefkerk . Revised on January 17, 2024.

APA reference page (7th edition)

On the APA reference page, you list all the sources that you’ve cited in your paper. The list starts on a new page right after the body text.

Follow these instructions to set up your APA reference page:

  • Place the section label “References” in bold at the top of the page (centered).
  • Order the references alphabetically .
  • Double-space all text.
  • Apply a hanging indent of 0.5 inches.

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Table of contents

Setting up the apa reference page, apa alphabetization guidelines, which sources to include on the reference page, annotated bibliography, creating apa references.

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References are ordered alphabetically by the first author’s last name. If the author is unknown, order the reference entry by the first meaningful word of the title (ignoring articles: “the”, “a”, or “an”).

Word processors like Word or Google Docs and citation generators can usually order the reference list automatically. However, ordering becomes challenging when citing multiple works by the same author or works by authors with the same last name.

Our in-depth article on ordering references in APA Style explains what to do in these situations.

Only include references for sources cited in the body text (with an APA in-text citation ). Don’t include references for:

  • Sources that you only consulted;
  • Personal communications (e.g., emails or phone calls);
  • General mentions of websites or periodicals ;
  • Common knowledge .

For some student papers, it’s common to describe or evaluate the source in an annotation . These annotations are placed on a new line below the corresponding reference entry. The entire annotation is indented 0.5 inches.

If an annotation consists of multiple paragraphs, the first line of the second and any subsequent paragraphs is indented an additional 0.5 inches.

APA annotated bibliography (7th edition)

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apa paper format without title page

The format of an APA reference differs depending on the source type. Play around with the options in the Scribbr Example Generator to get familiar with APA Style.

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With Scribbr’s free APA citation generator you can easily cite your sources according to the new 7th edition guidelines. It’s accurate, fast, and easy to use. Give it a try!

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APA citation examples

Check out Scribbr’s citation examples to learn more about citing each type of source, ranging from books and journals to podcasts and tweets !

Periodicals

  • Journal article
  • Newspaper article

Reports and gray literature

  • Press release
  • Dissertation or thesis
  • Conference paper

Books and reference works

  • Dictionary entry
  • Encyclopedia entry

Audiovisual works

  • Movie or documentary
  • YouTube video

Online media

  • Personal communication
  • Tables and figures

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Streefkerk, R. (2024, January 17). Setting Up the APA Reference Page | Formatting & References (Examples). Scribbr. Retrieved February 15, 2024, from https://www.scribbr.com/apa-style/apa-reference-page/

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In-text citation

  • Reference list
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Audiovisual
  • Books and chapters
  • Conferences
  • Course materials
  • Government and business reports
  • Medicine and health sources
  • Music scores
  • Tables and figures
  • Theses and dissertations
  • Web and social media
  • Other sources
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  • Other styles AGLC4 APA 7th Chicago 17th (A) Notes Chicago 17th (B) Author-Date Harvard MLA 9th Vancouver
  • Referencing home

The APA 7th style uses in-text citations when referring to or quoting people’s work. The essential elements of an in-text citation are the author surname/s and year.

Two types of in-text citations

1. author prominent format.

Use this format if you want to emphasise the author. Their name becomes part of your sentence.

Jones (2018) concluded that the treatment was effective in 74% of cases.

Author prominent citations are also referred to as parenthetical citations.

2. Information prominent format

Use this format if you want to emphasise the information. It cites the author’s name, typically at the end of a sentence.

...as evidenced by a recent Australian study of the treatment's effectiveness (Jones, 2018).

Information prominent citations are also referred to as narrative citations.

The following examples show how to form in-text citations according to number of authors and other considerations.

Surname, Year

Hawkins (2020) reported that the results of the study were inconclusive.

. . . the results of the study were inconclusive (Hawkins, 2020).

Two authors

Both surnames in the order listed on the publication and the year.

For author prominent citations, use “and” between the author names.

For information prominent citations, & between the author names.

Bovey and Hede (2013) argue that . . .

. . . is a significant factor (Bovey & Hede, 2013).

Three or more authors

Cite the first author followed by et al. and year

Robbins et al. (2017) note that leadership empathy and good communication are key to negotiating successful organisational change.

They may be required to work harder now there are … perform the same tasks (Robbins et al., 2017).

Different authors, same surname

When two or more authors have the same surname, add their initials to distinguish between them

P. R. Smith (1945) adopted a unique approach . . . . . . later in the text . . . This idea was first advanced by S. Smith (1935).

Research conducted by W.O. Brown and Jones (1985) was influenced by the work of S.A. Brown and Smith (1961).

The corresponding information prominent citations would be:

(P.R. Smith, 1945)

(S. Smith, 1935)

(W.O. Brown & Jones, 1985)

(S.A. Brown & Smith, 1961)

Multiple authors, ambiguous citations

Distinguish identical multiple-author citations with the same year by adding an additional surname, followed by a comma and et al.

Instead of just Brown et al. (1998), add additional author surnames to distinguish between separate works that Brown co-authored that year:

Brown, Shimamura, et al. (1998)

Brown, Taylor, et al. (1998).

The corresponding information prominent citations would be (Brown, Shimamura, et al., 1998), and (Brown, Taylor, et al., 1998).

  • For further guidance see the APA Style website - Citing multiple works…

Same author, two or more works

Author surname, then years separated by a commas, in chronological order.

Reimer (2017, 2018, 2019) considered this phenomenon across various studies . . .

. . . this phenomenon was considered across various studies (Reimer, 2017, 2018, 2019).

Same author, multiple works and same year

Assign a suffix of a, b, c, d, etc. after the year, according to alphabetical listing by title in the reference list.

Stairs (1992b) examined . . . . . . later in the text . . . According to Stairs (1992a) . . .

. . . was recently considered (Stairs, 1992b) . . . . . . later in the text . . . . . . the results were inconclusive (Stairs, 1992a).

  • For multiple references by the same author with no date, after n.d. add a hyphen and then the suffix e.g. (Dreshcke n.d.-b)

Multiple works from various authors

You may want to cite works from various authors to more strongly support a particular point you are making.

List each work alphabetically by surname in alphabetical order, separated by semicolons.

. . . as proposed by various researchers (Adams et al., 2020; Green, 2019; Hall & Clark, 2021).

Green (2019), Adams et al. (2020), and Hall and Clark (2021) analysed . . .

  • In the author prominent citation there is no requirement to order the citations alphabetically

If the author is identified as 'Anonymous'

Use 'Anonymous' as the surname.

Anonymous (2019)

(Anonymous, 2019)

Unknown author

Give the first few words of the title. If the title is from an article or a chapter, use double quotation marks. If the title is from a periodical, book brochure, or report, then use italics.

. . . the worst election loss in the party's history ("This is the end," 1968).

Corporate or group author

If the organisation has a recognisable abbreviation

First listing: Organisation name [Abbreviation], Year Subsequent: Abbreviation, Year

Where the organisation abbreviation is not widely known

Use the name in full every time

Census data gives valuable insights into... (Australian Bureau of Statistics [ABS], 2021).

Australia's next census will be held on 10th August 2021 (ABS, 2021).

Author quoted directly

Occasionally it may be necessary to include in your work a quotation from an author.

Always include a page number when you have to cite directly from a source.

If no page numbers are available (e.g. in a website), include a paragraph number.

Use accepted abbreviations like p. for page and para. for paragraph

Gittins (2006) suggests that "the key to understanding microeconomics is to realise that its overwhelming focus is on the role of price" (p. 18).

Weston (1988) stated "the darkest days were still ahead" (p. 45).

A patient is in pain when they tell you and "it is important to believe the patient so as to build a trusting relationship" (Phipps et al., 1983, p.45).

Personal communications

Private letters, e-mail and conversations require only an in-text citation, which includes the date of the communication (Month DD, YYYY).

Personal communications are not included in reference lists, as they are not accessible to others.

R. Smith (personal communication, January 28, 2020) . . .

. . . (R. Smith, personal communication, January 28, 2020)

Author referred to in a secondary source

The original author is cited together with the secondary author.

Only do this when the original is unavailable and only include what you have actually read.

Farrow (1968, as cited in Ward & Decan, 1988) . . .

Ward and Decan (1988) cited Farrow (1968) as finding . . .

. . . (Farrow, 1968, as cited in Ward & Decan, 1988).

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COMMENTS

  1. General Format

    Beneath the title, type the author's name: first name, middle initial (s), and last name. Do not use titles (Dr.) or degrees (PhD). Beneath the author's name, type the institutional affiliation, which should indicate the location where the author (s) conducted the research.

  2. Title page setup

    A title page is required for all APA Style papers. There are both student and professional versions of the title page. Students should use the student version of the title page unless their instructor or institution has requested they use the professional version.

  3. PDF Student Paper Setup Guide, APA Style 7th Edition

    Page numbers: Put a page number in the top right corner of every page, including the title page or cover page, which is page 1. Student papers do not require a running head on any page. Title Page Setup Title Page Elements The affiliation consists of the department of the course and the name of the university.

  4. APA Formatting and Citation (7th Ed.)

    Throughout your paper, you need to apply the following APA format guidelines: Set page margins to 1 inch on all sides. Double-space all text, including headings. Indent the first line of every paragraph 0.5 inches. Use an accessible font (e.g., Times New Roman 12pt., Arial 11pt., or Georgia 11pt.).

  5. Formatting the Paper

    Title of paper (in bold), author's name (your name), institutional affiliation (Regis College), course number and name, instructor name, assignment due date centered on title page are the basic elements on the title page. MORE INFORMATION .

  6. Paper format

    Paper format is covered in the seventh edition APA Style manuals in the Publication Manual Chapter 2 and the Concise Guide Chapter 1 Date created: August 2019 Consistency in the order, structure, and format of a paper allows readers to focus on a paper's content rather than its presentation.

  7. Library Guides: APA Style 7th edition: APA Formatting

    Make 1 inch margins on the top, bottom, and sides. The first word in every paragraph should be indented one half inch. APA recommends using a font that is accessible to all readers. sans serif: 11-point Calibri or 11-point Arial. serif: 12-point Times New Roman, 11-point Georgia. Double space the entire research paper, including the title page.

  8. General Format

    Type your title in upper and lowercase letters centered in the upper half of the page. APA recommends that your title be no more than 12 words in length and that it should not contain abbreviations or words that serve no purpose. Your title may take up one or two lines. All text on the title page, and throughout your paper, should be double-spaced.

  9. Formatting & Sample Papers

    Formatting. The APA Style website includes a great section on Paper Format This link opens in a new window. The 7th edition of APA Style has two types of papers: student papers and professional papers. Please consult your assignment or reach out to your professor or instructor to determine which paper format you should use.

  10. Formatting a Paper in APA

    APA Headings within the Body of the Paper. The following guidelines are the basic formatting rules outlined in the APA Publication Manual 7th edition. If your instructor sets different requirements, always use your instructor's guidelines first. Paper Title: include on the first line of the first page of the body of your paper; bold and centered

  11. APA Title Page (7th edition)

    Revised on January 17, 2024. This article reflects the APA 7th edition guidelines. Click here for APA 6th edition guidelines. APA provides different guidelines for student and professional papers. The student version of the APA title page should include the following information (double spaced and centered): Paper title Author name

  12. Formatting the Paper Itself

    Formatting the Paper Itself. The following formatting rules for the paper are strongly recommended: Text should be double-spaced. Margins should be 1" on all sides (top, bottom, left, right). Recommended fonts and font sizes are: Times New Roman 11, Calibri 11, Arial 11, Lucida Sans Unicode 10, Georgia 11, Computer Modern 10, and similar.

  13. Does APA style have a simplified short-paper format?

    1 Answer Sorted by: 5 From an on-line search of APA style guides it appears that the APA style-guide is set up for research papers that would include a title page and abstract. It appears though that most universities that I searched either had a defined page count before an abstract page was needed or said to check with the course instructor.

  14. Formatting an APA title page

    An APA title page for any paper being submitted for a class, degree, or thesis is all about the basics. Here are the elements that should be included in Byline (author or authors) Affiliation (department and university) Course name and course number Your professor or institution might have their own formatting requirements.

  15. APA Formatting and Style Guide (7th Edition)

    Basic Rules Basic guidelines for formatting the reference list at the end of a standard APA research paper Author/Authors Rules for handling works by a single author or multiple authors that apply to all APA-style references in your reference list, regardless of the type of work (book, article, electronic resource, etc.) Articles in Periodicals

  16. Sample papers

    The following two sample papers were published in annotated form in the Publication Manual and are reproduced here as PDFs for your ease of use. The annotations draw attention to content and formatting and provide the relevant sections of the Publication Manual (7th ed.) to consult for more information.. Student sample paper with annotations (PDF, 4.95MB)

  17. APA Citation and Paper Formatting Guide (APA 7th Edition): When

    When quoting directly in the text of your paper, you would normally include page numbers if they were given. If there are no page numbers given: If there are numbered paragraphs, indicate the paragraph number instead of the page number with the word "para." before it. You may also count the paragraph number from the beginning of your source.

  18. No Author, Date, or Title in APA Style

    Webpage citations in APA Style consist of five components: author, publication date, title, website name, and URL. Unfortunately, some of these components are sometimes missing. For instance, there may be no author or publication date. This article explains how to handle different kinds and combinations of missing information.

  19. APA 7th Ed Paper and Title Page Format

    0 Share No views 2 minutes ago In this video, Purdue Global Learning and Development Specialist, Chrissine Cairns, demonstrates how to format a paper and title page in APA Style (7...

  20. Setting Up the APA Reference Page

    On the APA reference page, you list all the sources that you've cited in your paper. The list starts on a new page right after the body text. Follow these instructions to set up your APA reference page: Place the section label "References" in bold at the top of the page (centered). Order the references alphabetically. Double-space all text.

  21. PDF Student Title Page Guide, APA Style 7th Edition

    1-in. margins on all sides placement: first page of the paper title, author name(s), university, course name and number, instructor name, assignment due date ° positioned in the upper-middle of the page (3 or 4 lines below the top of the page)

  22. In-text citation

    The APA 7th style uses in-text citations when referring to or quoting people's work. The essential elements of an in-text citation are the author surname/s and year. Two types of in-text citations 1. Author prominent format. Use this format if you want to emphasise the author. Their name becomes part of your sentence.

  23. Page header

    Running head The running head is an abbreviated version of the title of your paper (or the full title if the title is already short). The running head is not required for student papers unless the instructor or institution requests it. Thus, typically only professional papers include a running head.

  24. White paper references

    White paper references follow the same format as reports, which are covered in the seventh edition APA Style manuals in the Publication Manual Section 10.4 and the Concise Guide Section 10.4 This guidance has been revised from the 6th edition.