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APA Style 7th edition: Reference List Basics

This guide covers stylistics of writing, formatting, and citing in APA Style 7th edition

Reference List

At the end of your paper, you'll need to include a References list. Review the APA Style 7th ed. guide

to see how to set that page up. This section covers the most common mediums and shows how to format the citations for your References page. If you're using a medium that you don't see listed here, contact the ERC at any campus for help.

Formatting References

The reason for a References page is simple-if readers wish to locate and retrieve sources that you cited in your text, the information necessary for them to do so is nicely organized at the end of your paper.

To start listing your sources, begin on a new page after your last page of text; label the page “References” in bold font and center at the top of the page. Continue double-spacing.

Academic Journal Articles

Journal titles should be italicized and listed in full. Nonstandard punctuation and/or capitalization should be maintained.

Journal of INVESTIGATIVE DERMATOLOGY instead of Journal of Investigative Dermatology

Odds & ENDS instead of Odds and Ends

Capitalize major words in journal titles. This rule differs from basic rules for common sources.

Capitalize the title’s first word and subtitles of journal articles, as well as the first letter of the first word after a coon or dash, and always capitalize proper nouns. Do not italicize, underline, or enclose the title in quotes.

Basic Rules for References

Use hanging indentation in your References list. If you’re not sure how to set up the hanging indent-see the video APA Style 7th ed. Formatting on the ERC YouTube channel. 

Invert authors’ names (last name first, then use initials for first and last names). If a middle name isn’t listed, just use the first.

“Arnold, B. T.” “Arnold, B.”

Information about Titles

When referring to titles of books, chapters, articles, webpages, reports, or any other sources, capitalize the first letter of the first word and the first letter of the first word after a colon or dash in the title. Capitalize proper nouns.

*NOTE-Academic journal titles are handled differently

Italicize titles of longer works like books, but don’t italicize, underline, or put quotation marks around titles of shorter works.

Multiple Authors

New to APA 7 is that last name and first/middle initials for all authors up to and including 20 authors must be listed. Separate authors with a comma. Use an ampersand (&) before the last author’s name. If 21 or more authors are listed, use an ellipsis, (not an ampersand), after the 19th author. You can then add the name of the final author. Alphabetize sources by the first author’s last name. 

Citation Generator

Nina Paley, CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons