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APA Citation Style (7th edition)

Citing sources

Citing is a two part process. A citation appears in two places in your essay:

  • Once in brief format in the body of your paper; these in-text entries are called narrative or parenthetical citations. 
  • A full citation will also be in the list at the end of your paper; this is called a Reference list.

Paraphrasing vs exact quotes:

  • Paraphrased content requires that you include the author and date e.g., (Cassidy, 2022).
  • Exact quotes require the author, date and a page number

Sample APA papers

APA Basics

Basic layout and arrangement is:

  • double-spaced on 8.5" x 11" with 1" margins on all sides.
  • APA recommends using any sans serif or serif font accessible to all users. Options include:
    • 11-point Calibri
    • 11-point Arial
    • 12-point Times New Roman
    • 11-point Georgia
  • use the same font throughout your paper except within footnotes or images.
  • indent the first line of every paragraph 0.5 in. using the tab key or the paragraph formatting function of your word-processing program. Leave the remaining lines of the paragraph left-aligned.
  • use one space after periods at the end of a sentence.

 The Title page for a student paper should include:

  • paper title
  • author name(s)
  • author affiliation (department and college)
  • course number and name
  • instructor name
  • assignment due date
  • page number in the header

 The Reference page should follow these basics:

  • be double spaced and the individual entries should have a hanging indent.
  • is arranged alphabetically.
  • for the author's first name use only initials Hindle, T. not Hindle, Tim. 
  • corporate author or group - alphabetize by the first significant word of the name.  Use the full name, not an acronym. Example: use Canadian Broadcasting Corporation not CBC.
  • no author? move the title to author position and alphabetize by the first significant word.
  • no date of publication? use the abbreviation (n.d.).

Student paper vs Professional paper

New with the 7th edition are specific instructions for student papers. Please check with your instructor to determine whether to use the student or professional version. Student papers do not require all the same elements (e.g. no running head) but some instructors may require a blended version of required elements.