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APA Style Guide

Reference Lists

 Reference List Format
The reference list at the end of a paper provides the information needed to locate and retrieve the source documents cited in the paper.

General Notes on Reference Lists:

  • Begin the reference list on a new page after the text.
  • Label the page "References" in bold, centered at the top.
  • Include only sources that were referenced in the paper.
  • Arrange entries in alphabetical order by last name of first author.
  • Use a hanging indent: the first line is at the left margin; subsequent lines are indented five spaces.
  • Double space the entire list both within and between entries
  • No extra space needed between entries; the hanging indents indicate the separate citations.
  • One space after all punctuation.
  • Use only the initials of the authors' first and middle names.
  • List all authors in reverse order: last name, first and middle initials.
  • If two or more authors are listed, use an ampersand (&) in front of the last author.
  • List up to twenty authors; if there are more than twenty authors, list the first nineteen followed by an ellipsis, then the last author.  (APA 7, 9.8).
  • Use commas after authors' names and before an ampersand.
  • If no author is given, start with the title and then the date. Incorporate these into the list in proper alphabetical order, ignoring initial articles.
  • Capitalize only the first words and proper nouns of book or article titles and subtitles; capitalize all important words in a journal/magazine/newspaper title.
  • Italicize the names of books and periodicals.
  • Most reference list entries end with a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) or URL. (See "What's a DOI?" in the left sidebar of this guide.)