APA Cheat Sheet: In-Text Citations

Why do we use citations & reference pages?

To Show Our Deep Knowledge About a Subject

For example, if you were in a conversation with an acquaintance, and he started expressing opinions about Chinese food, would you believe his views more or less if he told you he had never eaten at a Chinese restaurant before?

The same is true in writing. If you express an opinion or write a response to a reading, your instructor needs to know that you have gone through the text, evaluated the material, and are coming up with specific comments on specific ideas in a text. Your in-text citations and works cited page help you to do just that.


To Show Others Where You Found Your Information

If someone told you statistics on drug use, how would you feel if she got that information from someone down the street? What if she conducted a research study? What if she looked at police records? Which would you trust? Readers want to know where your information comes from and whether it’s valid. By providing documentation, you’re giving your readers the information they need to find the source & evaluate it for themselves.


How can I introduce quotes in APA style?

Gallaudet University provides a chart on words you can use to introduce a quote in APA style.


How do I use in-text citations in APA?

The examples below are designed to assist you in integrating ideas from your readings into your writing and citing them appropriately. All of this information & more can be found in the Penguin Handbook.

Example 1- In text citation- basic quotation

Hart (1996) wrote that some primatologists “wondered if apes had learned Language, with a capital L” (p. 109).


Example 2- In text citation- basic summary or paraphrase

According to Hart (1996), researchers took Terrace’s conclusions seriously, and funding for language experiments soon declined (p. 110).


Example 3- In text citation- work with three to five authors

The chimpanzee Nim was raised by researchers who trained him in American Sign Language by molding and guiding his hands (Terrace, Petitto, Sanders, & Bever, 1979, p. 891).


Example 4- In text citation- work with six or more authors

The ape language experiments are shedding light on the language development of very young children and children with linguistic handicaps (Savage-Rumbaugh et al., 1993).


Example 5- In text citation- organization as an author

According to the Language Research Center (2000), linguistic research with apes has led to new methods of treating humans with learning disabilities such as autism and dyslexia.


Example 6- References page- basic book format

Bernstein, N. (2001). The lost children of Wilder: The epic struggle to change foster care. New York: Pantheon.


Example 7- References page- basic magazine format

Raloff, J. (2001, May 12). Lead therapy won’t help most kids. Science News, 159, 292.


Example 8- References page- basic journal format- paginated by issue

Scruton, R. (1996). The eclipse of listening. The New Criterion, 15(3), 5-13.


Example 9- References page- basic journal format- paginated by volume

Morawski, J. (2000). Social psychology a century ago. American Psychologist, 55, 427-431.


Example 10- References page- online journal with no print version

Ashe, D. D., & McCutcheon, L. E. (2001, May 4). Shyness, loneliness, and attitude toward celebrities.

Current Research in Social Psychology, 6(9). Retrieved July 3, 2001, from http://www.uiowa.edu/~grpproc/crisp/crisp.6.9.htm


Example 11- References page- online posting

Eaton, S. (2001, June 12). Online transactions [Msg 2] Message posted to news://sci.psychology.psychotherapy.moderated

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