Using the APA Style

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Referencing using the APA (American Psychological Association) style • About this resource
• The APA style
• Part 1: In-text Citations
• Part 2: Collating a reference list
• A sample reference list in APA style
• Further reading
• Printable copy of this resource (75 KB)

About this resource

This resource explains some of the more common applications of the APA style. It is based on the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) (2010), pp. 169–224. You should always check your unit guide and/or with academic staff (unit chair, lecturer or tutor) to make sure that this is the correct referencing style for your unit. You must reference all material you use from all sources and acknowledge your sources in the body of your paper each time you use a fact, a conclusion, an idea or a finding from someone's work. This establishes the authority of your work and acknowledges the researchers and writers you have drawn upon in your paper. It is necessary to cite your sources each time you:

• reproduce an author's exact words (quote), that is, copy word for word directly from a text. A page number must be given. • use your own wording (summarise or paraphrase) to explain or discuss what someone has said. You are encouraged to provide page numbers. If you copy an entire table, chart, diagram or graph or if you take only some of the data contained in such sources, you must provide a reference. Sources such as journals, books, encyclopedias, computer programs and software, information from the internet, reports, newspapers, interviews, radio and television must be cited in the body of your paper and detailed in a reference list at the end. Information from Deakin study guides and readers must also be acknowledged.

The APA style

The APA style of referencing consists of two elements:
(1) in-text citations giving author, year and sometimes page number in the body of the paper (2) a reference list at the end of the paper providing the complete details for each in-text citation. Part 1 of this resource deals with in-text citations.

Part 2 of this resource shows how to present the related reference list entries for the in-text citations.

Part 1: In-text Citations

One author

When you refer to a single author, include the author's family name and year of publication, using one of the forms shown here. Clay (2003) argues that having a planned approach to writing essays can be of great benefit. or

Essay writing can be made much more manageable if a planned approach is taken (Clay, 2003). For citing an author or authors more than once in any one paragraph, see instructions under Repeat citations of a study within one paragraph.

Multiple authors

For two authors, include the family name of both authors and year as required. According to Antonakos and Kazanis (2003) there are advantages to keeping design and research methods simple. or
There are advantages to keeping design and research methods simple (Antonakos & Kazanis, 2003). Use 'and' when family names are outside parentheses; use '&' when family names are inside parentheses. In the case of three, four or five authors, cite all authors the first time, then in subsequent citations of this work use the family name of the first author plus 'et al.' and the year as required. Gagliardi, Frederickson and Shanley (2002) argue that in order to provide consistent care, healthcare professionals often face the dilemma of finding similarities in patient responses to illness while at the same time respecting the uniqueness of each individual patient. However, despite any apparent similarities in symptoms or limitations, Gagliardi et al. contend all patients should be treated differently. Furthermore, according to the Roy Adaptation Model (Roy & Andrews, 1999), nurses need to make comprehensive assessments of each patient. After the first citation of an author or authors in the narrative (i.e. the author's name...
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