Research Methods in Social Science (Soc260)

What does an APA citation include?

There are two parts to every APA citation: an in-text reference in brackets, which occurs directly after every instance in which a source is quoted or paraphrased, and a complete citation, occurring in an alphabetized reference list at the end of your paper.

In-Text Citations

In-text citations usually consist of the last name of the author(s) followed by the publication date (Jones, 2012). In rare instances, such as when the work has no author, the title will be used in its stead. See this page for more detailed information on formatting in-text citations.

Reference List Entries

The format for Reference List Entries changes depending on the type of source you are citing. Generally, they will include bibliographic information, such as author names, titles, editors, and publication information. Electronic works will also include retrieval information, such as a DOI or a URL. The rest of this guide contains information on how to format reference list entries for a variety of sources.

Putting it Together 

Check out this link to see a sample paper written in APA citation style. 

Guides for APA writing

Hanging Indents

APA reference pages use a hanging indent. 

In Microsoft Word and Google Docs you can easily achieve a hanging indent using the ruler tabs.

Here are visual instructions for both methods.

Reference page checklist

Make sure your APA reference page meets the following criteria:

  • Times New Roman font.
  • 12-point font.
  • Double spaced lines.
  • No extra lines between entries.
  • Each citation has a hanging indent.

Get more APA help