How To Provide In-Text Citation In An APA Research Paper: Basic Rules To Remember
Students frequently encounter difficulties with formatting their research papers in APA style. Developed by American Psychological Association, this citation format covers a range of nuances that should be implicitly followed. If you don’t have much experience in creating APA papers, it may be tough to remember all of the rules. Fortunately, the following guidelines will help you cope with the task and you’ll learn how to correctly present in-text citations in the text of your paper.
Basics of In-Text Citation
In-text citations are used if you refer to someone else’s ideas or research in your paper. You may use direct quotations in your work. You may also paraphrase or summarize someone else’s words. Whatever method you use, the author’s name and the date of publication should be mentioned in the text while a complete reference should be included in the reference list of your paper.
Authors and Titles
- If the author is unknown, the title is used instead. If the title is too long, shorten it. The titles of articles or the project chapters are put in quotation marks while the titles of books, periodicals, and research reports are written in italics.
- If there are two authors, use “and” in the text or “&” in parentheses. If there are several authors, mention only the first name and follow it with “et al”.
- Capitalize all proper nouns, including initials.
- In the title, capitalize all nouns, verbs, pronouns, adverbs, and adjectives. Other words are not capitalized unless they consist of four letters or more.
Citing Direct Quotations
- If it is a short quotation, put quotation marks around the quote and follow it with the author’s last name, the date of publication, and the page number (presented as “p.”) in parentheses.
- Long quotations (exceeding 40 words) are usually presented as a separate block that is written on a new line and is indented half an inch from the left margin. Quotation marks aren’t used in this case. The author’s name, the publication year, and the page number are given in parentheses after the final punctuation mark in a quotation.
- If you refer to electronic sources (websites or e-books), use a paragraph number instead of the page number in parentheses.
- The author’s name can be placed within the text. If this is the case, use an introductory phrase, like “according to…” or “the author’s study found…”.
- When paraphrasing some else’s idea, remember to include the author’s name and the year of publication in parentheses.
- The use of the page number or the paragraph number is possible but not mandatory.
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