General format for references

  • The bibliography is called "References". It is double-spaced throughout, and has a hanging indent. It should begin on a separate page at the end of the paper.
  • Your text and the reference list must agree. References cited in the text must appear in the reference list; conversely, each entry in the reference list must be cited in the text.
  • Authors' names are last name first. Your reference list should be alphabetized by authors' last names.
  • Personal communications, such as e-mail messages to you, or private interviews that you conducted with another person, should not be cited in your reference list because they are not retrievable sources for anyone else. You should make reference to these sources in your in-text citations.
  • Use "&" instead of "and" when listing multiple authors of a single work (in text citations in parentheses, too).
  • The date of publication is enclosed in parentheses and immediately follows the author's name. When citing a monthly or weekly magazine, the month or month and date, follow the year in parentheses.
  • Only the first word in the title of the article or book is capitalized. If there is a subtitle, the first word of the subtitle is also capitalized.
  • Quotation marks are not used around article titles.
  • All major words are capitalized in the name of periodicals (e.g., The New York Times).
  • Italicize titles of periodicals or books.
  • Italicize the volume number of a periodical reference, but do not italicize the issue number.
  • Place the issue number in parentheses.
  • Include page numbers that a periodical article appears on, without the abbreviation pp.
  • If you have retrieved the article from an electronic database, include that information after the original publication information.
  • If you have more than one article by the same author(s), single-author references or multiple-author references with the exact same authors in the exact same order are listed in order by the year of publication, starting with the earliest.
  • References that have the same first author and different second and/or third authors are arranged alphabetically by the last name of the second author, or the last name of the third if the first and second authors are the same.
  • If no author is given for a particular source, begin with and alphabetize by using the title of the work, which will be listed in place of the author, and use a shortened version of the title for parenthetical citations.

Sources in Print

A book or article with no author or editor named:

  • Merriam-Webster's collegiate dictionary (10th ed.). (1993). Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster.
  • For parenthetical citations of sources with no author named, use a shortened version of the title instead of an author's name. For example, parenthetical citations of the source above would appear as: (Merriam-Webster's, 1993).
  • An article in a periodical (e.g., a journal, newspaper, or magazine)
  • Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (Year). Title of article. Title of periodical, volume number, pages.
  • For a magazine or newspaper article, you need to include specific publication dates (month and day, if applicable) as well as the year. For a journal article, you do not need to include the month or day of publication.
  • You need list only the volume number if the periodical uses continuous pagination throughout a particular volume. If each issue begins with page 1, then you should list the issue number as well: Title of Periodical, Volume number (Issue number), pages. Note that the issue number is not italicized. If the journal does not use volume numbers, use the month, season, or other designation.

Part of a nonperiodical (e.g., a book chapter or an article in a collection)

  • Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Year of publication). Title of chapter. In A. Editor & B. Editor (Eds.), Title of book (pages of chapter). Location: Publisher.
  • When you list the pages of the chapter or essay in parentheses after the book title, use "pp." before the numbers: (pp. 1-21). This abbreviation, however, does not appear before the page numbers in periodical references.

Journal article, one author:

  • Harlow, H. F. (1983). Fundamentals for preparing psychology journal articles. Journal of Comparative and Physiological Psychology, 55, 893-896.

Journal article, three to six authors

  • Kernis, M. H., Cornell, D. P., Sun, C. R., Berry, A., & Harlow, T. (1993). There's more to self-esteem than whether it is high or low: The importance of stability of self-esteem. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65,

Magazine article, one author

  • Henry, W. A., III. (1990, April 9). Making the grade in today's schools. Time, 135, 28-31.


  • Calfee, R. C., & Valencia, R. R. (1991). APA guide to preparing manuscripts for journal publication. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Work discussed in a secondary source

  • Coltheart, M., Curtis, B., Atkins, P., & Haller, M. (1993). Models of reading aloud: Dual-route and parallel-distributed-processing approaches. Psychological Review, 100, 589-608.

Give the secondary source in the references list; in the text, name the original work, and give a citation for the secondary source. For example, if Seidenberg and McClelland's work is cited in Coltheart et al. and you did not read the original work, list the Coltheart et al. reference in the References. In the text, use the following citation:

  • In Seidenberg and McClelland's study (as cited in Coltheart, Curtis, Atkins, & Haller, 1993), ...

Electronic (Internet) Sources

Web page:

  • Dewey, R. A. (2002). Psych Web by Russ Dewey. Retrieved from http://www

Nonperiodical Internet Document (e.g., a Web page or report)

  • Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Date of publication). Title of article. Retrieved from http://Web address.
  • When an Internet document is more than one Web page, provide a URL that links to the home page or entry page for the document. Also, if there isn't a date available for the document use (n.d.) for no date.

Article in an Internet Periodical

  • Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Date of publication). Title of article. Title of journal, volume number (issue number if available). Retrieved from Web address.

Part of Nonperiodical Internet Document

  • Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Date of publication). Title of article. In Title of book or larger document (chapter or section number). Retrieved from Web address.
  • Because long explanatory notes can be distracting to readers, APA style guidelines recommend the use of endnotes/footnotes. In the text, place a superscript numeral immediately after the text about which you would like to include more information (e.g., Scientists examined the fossilized remains of the wooly-wooly yak.1) Number the notes consecutively in the order they appear in your paper. At the end of the paper, create a separate page labeled Notes (centered at the top of the page).

The reference list

  • Use prefixes in alphabetizing names if commonly part of the surname (De Vries).
  • Do not use von in alphabetizing (Helmholtz, H. L. F. von), or Jr., III, or Sr.
  • Treat Mc and Mac literally; Mac comes before Mc.
  • Disregard apostrophes, spaces, and capitals in alphabetizing; D'Arcy comes after Daagwood, Decker comes after de Chardin.
  • Single-author citations precede multiple-author citations of the same year (Zev, 1990 then Zev et al., 1990).
  • Alphabetize corporate authors by first significant word. Do not use abbreviations in corporate names.
  • When directly quoting or citing a document, a page number or other means of identifying a specific passage is required. In the absence of page numbers, if paragraph numbers appear in an electronic document, add the paragraph symbol or the abbreviation para. and the paragraph number to the citation (e.g., Kortepeter & Parker, 1999,  17). If there is no paragraph number, cite the nearest preceding section heading and count paragraphs from there (e.g., Kortepeter & Parker, 1999, Method section, para. 4).

Abbreviations in a Reference List

chap. chapter
ed. edition
rev. ed. revised edition
2nd ed. second edition
Ed. Edited by
(Eds.) multiple editors
Trans. Translated by
p. page number (with a space after the period)
pp. page numbers (plural)
Vol. specific Volume
vols. a work with xx volumes
No. Number
Pt. Part
Suppl. Supplement
Tech. Rep. Technical Report