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GU-Q: APA Style

Citation Introduction

Understanding why and how to cite information sources appropriately is an important skill.  When incorporating and citing sources into your work, you are giving credit to other scholars for their scholarly ideas. Further, you are providing a roadmap for those readers who are curious to learn more about the topic you have chosen to write about.  This is what we mean by "joining the scholarly conversation". Failing to cite your sources or giving credit to others appropriately is plagiarism.  At Georgetown, as elsewhere, this is a very serious offense. To avoid the pitfalls of plagiarism, it is important to remember to give credit to others whenever you:

  • Use another person's words, ideas, opinions or theories
  • Present data, statistics, graphs or drawings that are not common knowledge
  • Quote someone's written or spoken words 
  • Paraphrase someone's written or spoken words

If you are unsure of the process or need further help with citation styling, please speak with a librarian or a writing center specialist.  

Using APA - References

Single book and author
For a book with one author begin with the author' name.  Then include the publication year, title and subtitle, city of publication, country or state abbreviation, and publisher. 
Levick, S.E. (2003). Clone being: Exploring the psychological and social dimensions. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. 
One volume of multi-volume work

Barnes, J. (Ed.). (1995). Complete works of Aristotle (Vols. 1-2). Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.


Citation styling for print and electronic journals is slightly different.  For print, begin with the author's name(s).  Then include the publication date; the article title; the periodical title; the volume number and issue number, if any; and the page numbers. 

O'Connell, D.C., & Kowal, S. (2003). Psycholinguistics: A half century of monologism. The American Journal of Psychology, 116, 191-212.


Article or periodical titles from library databases should include the author, date, title, publication information, volume and issue numbers, as well as the digital object identifier (DOI) if it is available or known.  If there is no DOI, include the URL for the periodical's home pae or for the article. (Note: for newspaper articles accessible from a searchable website, give the site URL only).

Barrington, F. (2008, February 7). In many communities, it's not easy going green. The New York Times.  Retrieved from

Cleary, J.M., & Crafti, N (2007). Basic need satisfaction,emotional eating, and dietary restraint as risk factors for  recurrent overeating in a community sample. E Journal of Applied Psychology, 2(3), 27-59. Retrieved from

Morley, N.J., Ball, L.J., & Ormerod, T.C. (2006). How the detection of insurance fraud succeeds and fails. Psychology, Crime & Law, 12 (2),163-180. doi:10.1080/1056454545645.

Images require a fair amount of documentation.  When citing images, try to include as much of the the following information as possible:

  • creator's name (author, artist, photographer etc.)
  • date the work was published or created
  • title of the work
  • place of publication
  • publisher
  • type of material (for photographs, charts, online images)
  • website address and access date
  • name of the institution or museum where the work is located (for artworks and museum exhibits)
  • dimensions of the work (for artworks)

Baumel, A.  (2010). Cholera treatment center in Haiti [Online image]. Retrieved October 2, 2010 from

Kulbis, M. (Photographer). (2006). Men pray [Photograph], Retrieved from:

Reynolds Lewis, K. (2001, December 22). Why some business owners think now is the time to sell. The New York Times, p. B5.

Citing websites can be challenging and requires a bit of practice.  To cite an entire website include the following information: the author's name; the publication date (or n.d. if no date is available); the title of the document; the title of the site or larger work, if any; volume and issue numbers (if any); page numbers (if any); Retrieved from and the URL.  

Behnke, P.C. (2006, February 22). The homeless are everyone's problem. Retrieved from

What parents should know about treatment of behavioral and emotional disorders in teenagers. (2006). APA Online. Retrieved from

Nolan, C. (Director). (2010). Inception [Motion Picture]. United States: Warner Bros.