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APA Style (7th ed)

How it Works


APA Style is widely used in the sciences as well as other academic disciplines, and therefore fits well with many of Sheridan's programs. Using a recognized citation style by a credible organization ensures consistency and makes it easier for your reader to understand what information you have cited, and where you found that information.

You must provide a citation for any information, image or other media that you use from another source. Citing your sources both provides credit to the original author(s), as well as provides credibility to your argument. If you can imagine your reader asking 'how do you know that?' or 'did you create that?', provide a citation.

You should have as many citations as are needed to support your argument or report. There is no limit. However, your instructor will also want you to provide your own argument and demonstrate your understanding of the content of what you have read. Your citations should be interspersed with your own analysis. Always refer to your assignment guidelines and ask your instructor to clarify the expectations for the assignment.

There are a number of automatic citation generators available to students. However, there are no perfect citation generators and students are expected to check all their citations no matter what generator is used. Creating in-text citations is easy to complete manually, as there are very few rules to follow. However, if you use the References tab in Word to build your reference list, generating the in-text citations is even easier. Other commonly used citation generators for the reference list include RefWorks and Zotero. See Citation Tools for more details.

There are times you will not be able to identify an author, or a publication date, or a title, or the source. In these cases, APA has some recommendations you can follow. See Missing Reference Information


Additional Tutorials

Basics of APA Style

Learn the basics of seventh edition APA Style -- from setting up your paper, to citing your sources.

Academic Writer

© 2020 American Psychological Association.

How to Avoid Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism

Learn how to identify plagiarism, cite sources properly, and develop sound writing practices.

Academic Writer

© 2020 American Psychological Association.