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Citation Guides: APA Style

Quick reference to frequently used citation formats for APA, APSA, Chicago/Turabian, and MLA styles. For more information, please reach out to you Friendly Lanier Tech Librarian.

More Information

APA style format can be complex.  For more information on how to cite other common sources or for more in depth explanations of citation formats, please open the pdf below, refer to the official APA Guide found in your campus library or consult with your instructor or campus librarian.

9.35 Format of DOIs and URLs

Follow these guidelines to format DOIs and URLs.

  • It is acceptable to use either the default display settings for hyperlinks in your word-processing program (e.g., usually blue font, underlined) or plain text that is not underlined.
  • Following the current recommendations of the International DOI Foundation to format DOIs in the reference list, which as of this publication is as follows:
  • Do not add a period after the DOI or URL because it may interfere with the link functionality.*

*p. 299-300 of Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th  edition

General Format Requirements

2.22 Margins:  1" on all four edges of the page

2.19 Font:  Choose a single, readable, and widely available font such as Times New Roman or Arial. In general, use the equivalent of at least eleven-point Arial or twelve-point Times New Roman for the body of the text. (Some fonts like Arial, take up more space on a line and appear larger than other fonts at the same point size.

2.21 Spacing:  Double-space the entire paper, including the title page, abstract, text, headings, block quotes, reference list. table and figure notes, and appendices, with the following exceptions:

  • title page: Elements of the title page are double-spaced, and an additional double-spaced blank line appears between the title and byline.  At least one double-spaced blank line also appears between the final affiliation and any author note.
  • table body and figure image: The table body (cells) and words within the image part of a figure may be single-spaced.
  • footnotes: Footnotes that appear at the bottom of the page on which they are called out should be single-spaced and formatted with the default settings of your word-processing program.  Footnotes on their own page after the references should be formatted like regular paragraphs of text - that is, indented and double-spaced.
  • displayed equations: It is permissible to apply triple- or quadruple-spacing in special circumstances, such as before and after a displayed equations.

It is not necessary to add blank lines before or after headings, even if a heading falls at the end of a page.  Do not add extra spacing between paragraphs.

2.23 and 2.24 Paragraph Alignment and Indention: Paragraphs should be left justified and indented 0.5 in. or use the tab key to indent the first line of each new paragraph.

*Publication manual of the American Psychological Association: The official guide to APA style. (Seventh edition.). (2020). American Psychological Assocation, 44-45. 

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APA Sample Citation Video

The above video, from the Psychology extra credit assignment on APA citations, explains the different components of an APA citation for a scholarly article from GALILEO and how those components should be formatted.

Print Book

APA print book citation format with example.

Electronic Book

APA electronic book citation format with example.

Scholarly Article from a Library Database

APA Scholarly Article from a Library Database


APA video format with example.

In-Text Citations

How to Insert an In-Text Citation into Your Paper

For Short Quotations

If you are directly quoting from a work, you will need to include the author, year of publication, and page number for the reference (preceded by "p." for a single page and “pp.” for a span of multiple pages, with the page numbers separated by an en dash).  You can introduce the quotation with a signal phrase that includes the author's last name followed by the date of publication in parentheses.

According to Jones (1998), "students often had difficulty using APA style, especially when it was their first time" (p. 199).

Jones (1998) found "students often had difficulty using APA style" (p. 199); what implications does this have for teachers?

If you do not include the author’s name in the text of the sentence, place the author's last name, the year of publication, and the page number in parentheses after the quotation.

She stated, "Students often had difficulty using APA style" (Jones, 1998, p. 199), but she did not offer an explanation as to why.

Long quotations

Place direct quotations that are 40 words or longer in a free-standing block of typewritten lines and omit quotation marks. Start the quotation on a new line, indented 1/2 inch from the left margin, i.e., in the same place you would begin a new paragraph. Type the entire quotation on the new margin, and indent the first line of any subsequent paragraph within the quotation 1/2 inch from the new margin. Maintain double-spacing throughout, but do not add an extra blank line before or after it. The parenthetical citation should come after the closing punctuation mark.

Zichy and Bidou (2007) say personalities can be described in colors: (signal phrase)

In the Color Q personality profiling system, you have a primary personality Color.  This is who you are at your core.  You also have a backup Color – a strong secondary influence.  Finally, you have an Introvert or Extrovert tendency.  Color Q describes people, for example, as Green/Red Introverts. (p.4)                    (Parenthetical follows ending punctuation)

Quotations from sources without pages

Direct quotations from sources that do not contain pages should not reference a page number. Instead, you may reference another logical identifying element: a paragraph, a chapter number, a section number, a table number, or something else. Older works (like religious texts) can also incorporate special location identifiers like verse numbers. In short: pick a substitute for page numbers that makes sense for your source.

Jones (1998) found a variety of causes for student dissatisfaction with prevailing citation practices (paras. 4–5).

A meta-analysis of available literature (Jones, 1998) revealed inconsistency across large-scale studies of student learning (Table 3).

Summary or paraphrase

If you are paraphrasing an idea from another work, you only have to make reference to the author and year of publication in your in-text reference and may omit the page numbers. APA guidelines, however, do encourage including a page range for a summary or paraphrase when it will help the reader find the information in a longer work. 

According to Jones (1998), APA style is a difficult citation format for first-time learners.

APA style is a difficult citation format for first-time learners (Jones, 1998, p. 199).


APA Format for Presentations and Powerpoints

APA does not have specific instructions for applying APA to presentations such as PowerPoint, Google Slides, or Canva presentations. Here are a few basic guidelines for you to follow when completing a presentation in APA:

1. When creating a title slide, include the same information as required on a research paper's title page.

2. Include in-text citations for quotes, paraphrases, images, data, and videos in APA format. You do not have to include citations for clip art from Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, or other similar programs.

3. Make sure to include a list of references at the end of your presentation that follows APA format. To add a hanging indent in PowerPoint, see this video!

Check out the links below for further guidance, including how to cite a presentation as a resource!


APA Format for Images and Audiovisuals

For images, include as much information as you can find, including:

Artist or photographer's last name and first initial; date the image was created; Title of the work [Medium (like Painting, Sculpture, Photograph, Print)]; and location seen (museum); or online location & URL (name & web address of the website where you found it).

Here is an example from the Purdue OWL APA 7th Ed. Style Guide - Audiovisual Material:

Photograph (not associated with a museum)

Photographer, P. (Year of publication). Title of photograph [Photograph]. Source. URL

Ryan, S. (2019). Sea smoke on Lake Michigan [Photograph]. New York Times.

  • Parenthetical citation: (Ryan, 2019)
  • Narrative citation: Ryan (2019)

Note: if the photograph or artwork does not have a title, describe it and put that description in square brackets where the title goes.

Here are examples from the APA 7th Ed. Style website:

Artwork in a museum or on a museum website

Artist, A. (Year of publication). Title of artwork [Painting]. Source (location or website). URL

van Gogh, V. (1889). The starry night [Painting]. The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, United States.

  • Parenthetical citation: (van Gogh, 1889)
  • Narrative citation: van Gogh (1889)

Instagram photo

Author, A. or Name of Group who posted it [@instagram handle]. (Year, Month Date). Content of the post up to the first 20 words [Medium (Photograph; Video)]. Instagram. URL

Pete the Cat Official. [@petethecatofficial]. (2024, June 18). “James Dean, the creator and illustrator of Pete the Cat, was inspired by his recent trip to @themuseumofmodernart in New York [Image]. Instagram.

  • Parenthetical citation: (Pete the Cat Official, 2024)
  • Narrative citation: Pete the Cat Official (2024)

Clip Art or Stock Image References

Common sources for clip art are Microsoft Word and Microsoft PowerPoint. Images and clip art from these programs can be used without citations. By purchasing the program, you have purchased a license to use the clip art and images that come with the program without attribution. 

For stock images, the need for a citation is determined by the Creative Commons license (CC), which may or may not require you to attribute the image to its source. Getty Images is a common example of a source for stock images. 

Tables and Figures

Check out the Owl@Purdue's very specific guide to including and creating tables and figures for APA papers: