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APA Style Guide

Parenthetical Citations

Key Elements of an In-Text Citation

  • Author(s) Last Name(s)
  • Publication Year
  • Page Number(s)

Standard Citation

(Smith, 2010, p. 28)

Two Authors

(Smith & Jones, 2010, p. 28)

Three or More Authors

(Smith et al., 2010, p. 28)

No/Unknown Author

Include the first 2-4 words of the title, excluding articles. The format of the title depends on source type; however, key words should be capitalized regardless of source type. 

Source: article, chapter, webpage ("Writing-to-Learn Activities," 2018, p. 75)

Source: book (Dinosaur in a Haystack, 1998, p. 21)

Organization as Author

First Citation: (American Psychological Association [APA], 2019, p. 210)

Subsequent Citations: (APA, 2019, p. 56)

Two or More Works

If you incorporate more than one source in a sentence, list them in alphabetical order in the parentheses. 

(Dinosaur in a Haystack,1998, p. 21; Smith, 2010, p. 28)

Indirect Sources

If you use a source that was cited in another source, cite the original source, followed by the source you read. For example, if you read a work by Lyon et al. (2014) in which Rabbitt (1982) was cited, and you were unable to read Rabbitt’s work yourself, cite Rabbitt’s work as the original source, followed by Lyon et al.’s work as the secondary source. 

(Rabbitt, 1982, p. 53, as cited in Lyon et al., 2014)

Unknown Publication Date

(Smith & Jones, n.d., p. 28)

Multiple Pages Cited

(Smith & Jones, n.d., pp. 28-29)

No Page Numbers

When quoting directly from a source, ask your instructor if he/she would prefer for you to use another form of information to help locate the passage being cited (ex. paragraph number). 

(Smith & Jones, 2010)

Narrative Citation

If you incorporate the author name and publication date into your sentence, include only the relevant page number(s) in the parenthetical citation. 

Webster-Stratton (2016) described a case example of a 4-year-old girl who showed an insecure attachment to her mother; in working with the family dyad, the therapist focused on increasing the mother’s empathy for her child (pp. 152–153).

Additional Resource