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APA 7th Style Citation Guide: In-text Citations

APA In-text citation


Citations must be used when you include a direct quote, refer to, summarize, or paraphrase from another source. Narrative or parenthetical citations must correspond to entries in your reference list.

For a direct quote, include the page number as well. APA does encourage the inclusion of a page number when paraphrasing when it would help interested readers locate the relevant passage within a long or complex work (e.g., a book).

Narrative Citation: The author appears in the running text and the date appears in parentheses immediately after the author name.

Smith (2017) noted that the sun was setting very low in the sky.


Parenthetical Citation: The author and date, separate by a comma, placed in parentheses. A parenthetical citation can appear within or at the end of a sentence.

The sun was setting very low in the sky (Smith, 2017).

The sun was setting very low in the sky (Smith, 2017) and time was running for the possibility of a successful rescue attempt.


Source without Named Persons as Authors

If a source has an organization as the author, rather than a named person as the author, use the name of the organization.

Narrative: According to the American Psychological Association (2018). 

Parenthetical: (American Psychological Association, 2018)

Source without a Date

If there is no date, use n.d. (for no date) in place of the year.

(Smith, n. d.)


Source without Page Numbers

Some electronic sources may not have page numbers. Provide readers with another way of locating the quoted passage. Give a heading or section name, if provided.

(Gecht-Silver & Duncombe, 2015, Osteoarthritis section).

You may also give a paragraph number (count the paragraphs manually if they are not numbered). Give the paragraph number with the abbreviation "para." (Smith, 2017, para. 5).

Direct quote 40 words or more:

Display the quote as an indented block of text without quotation marks and include the author’s name(s), year and page number in parentheses at the end of the quote. Double space the entire quotation. At the end of a block quotation, cite the quoted source and page number in parentheses after the final punctuation mark.

Students often have difficulty using APA style, especially when it was their first time citing sources. This difficulty could be attributed to the fact that many students failed to purchase a style manual or to ask their teacher for assistance. (Jones, 1998, p.199)     


American Psychological Association. (2019). Table 8.1 Basic in-text  citation styles. Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.)

Secondary source: (original quote used in article you referenced)

Use secondary sources as little as possible. If the original work is out of print or not available through usual sources, or not available in English, give the secondary source in the reference list; in-text, name the original work and give a citation for the secondary source. For example, if Cushing's work is cited in Martin and you did not read Cushing's work, list Martin's work in the reference list. In the text use the following:

Cushing's diary (as cited in Martin, 1938).

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