|LEO: Literacy Education Online
APA Reference Page Citations: General Guidelines
This web page offers general guidelines to be followed when preparing a reference
page using APA documentation. This system of documentation is presented in detail
in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (Fifth
Edition, Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2001).
The following information about APA style covers order,
capitalization, and punctuation
of entries in the reference page.
- Order items in the reference list alphabetically according to the author's
- If there is more than one author, use the first's author's last name to
determine alphabetic placement.
- If no author is identified, alphabetize based upon the first significant
word in the title of the source.
- If there is more than one publication by the same author or authors, order
according to the year of publication, with the earliest publication first.
- References by the same authors with the same publication date are arranged
alphabetically by title. Lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.) are placed immediately
after the year within parentheses.
- In references with the same first author and different second or third
authors, arrange the items alphabetically according to the last name of the
second author, or when necessary, the third author.
- Capitalize only the first word of the title and subtitle of a book, article,
or chapter title and any proper names found within the title.
- Capitalize each significant word in a journal title.
- Capitalize each significant word in the publication information.
- Titles of journal articles and book chapters appear without quotation marks.
- Book titles, journal titles, and volume numbers are italicized.
- When there are two or more writers, use a comma followed by an ampersand
(&) before the final name.
- Use parentheses around the year of publication of books, the date of publication
of articles, functions of people in the citation (editors, translators, etc.),
report numbers, or volume and edition numbers of book entries.
- If email addresses or URLs for web pages will not fit on one line, break
the line after a mark of punctuation (that is, after a period or slash) so
that the address break is logical for readers.
For examples of specific reference entries, please refer to the entries found
under "How do I document . . ." on the LEO document APA
Documentation: Name and Year.
The website for the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association
is located at http://www.apastyle.org/,
and information about citing electronic sources is available at http://www.apastyle.org/elecref.html.
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This page was written by Judith Kilborn
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Updated: 15 February 2004