APA 7th Referencing: In-text referencing

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This page contains information about how to present referencing information within the flow of your writing/assessment including:

In-text referencing defined

APA 7th is an 'author/date' system, so your in-text references for all formats (book, journal article, web document) consists of the author(s) surname and year of publication.

The basics of an in-text reference in APA:

  • Include author or authors and year of publication.
  • Use round brackets.

Example: (Smith & Bruce, 2018)

If you quote directly from an author you need to include the page or paragraph number of the quote in your in-text reference. See the 'Quotes' section below for more advice on adding quotes into your work.

  • Include author or authors, year of publication and page or paragraph number of your quote.
  • Use round brackets.

Example: (Smith & Bruce, 2018, pp. 25-26)

Direct quotes in APA 7th

For direct quotes of less than 40 words, incorporate them into the text and enclose the quote with double quotation marks, e.g.

Narrative quote (where the authors are named in your sentence):

Webber (2018) concludes that “addressing the issue of school dropout not only affects the education system, but may also serve as a prevention effort for the welfare, mental health, and corrections systems” (p. 82).

Parenthetical quote (where the citation details are presented in parentheses following the quote):

"Addressing the issue of school dropout not only affects the education system, but may also serve as a prevention effort for the welfare, mental health, and corrections systems" (Webber, 2018, p. 82).

For direct quotes of 40 or more words start on a new line and indent the whole block ~1cm from the left, do not add any additional space before or after the quote. The entire quote should be double-spaced. Quotation marks are not required e.g.:

     Others have contradicted this view, suggesting:

These overload issues can reach across the lifespan and affect individuals in many ways. As related issues continue to emerge, counselors will need to be aware of potential mental health problems stemming from technology overload and continue to research and develop the skills needed for effective interventions. In the digital age, these capabilities will be crucial in helping clients regain and maintain a healthy balance of life, work, and technology. (Scott et al., 2017, p. 605)

*NOTE: Use paragraph numbers if no page numbers are available. 

Ellipses '…' and Quotes

It is common when writing to use an ellipsis (3 fullstops in a row '…') to indicate where words have been omitted from a sentence. This is not permitted in quotes in APA:

"Regardless of quotation length, do not insert an ellipsis at the beginning and/or end of a quotation unless the original source includes an ellipsis" (APA, 2020, p. 271).

This Guide makes use of ellipses in some paraphrasing examples due to limited space. To avoid confusion we have removed them from all quote examples.

Paraphrasing in APA 7th

Paraphrasing is when you are summarising the words or expressing the ideas of the author(s) in your own words. When paraphrasing you must acknowledge the original source in the text of your writing. Include the author's surname and year of publication in round brackets, or if including the author(s) name anywhere in the sentence, place the year of publication in round brackets next to the author's name.

(Leskowitz, 2017)


Leskowitz (2017)

When paraphrasing there is more than one way to place the citation within your text.

Citation at the beginning

Leskowitz (2017) describes the transcendent states that athletes experience …

Citation in the middle

… sport viewed as a spiritual path (Leskowitz, 2017), and one that is frequently followed in the west.

Citation at the end

… athletes using techniques adapted from holistic and complementary medicine (Leskowitz, 2017).

Different referencing methods may highlight the importance of the author, or give more weighting to the information.

Author-prominent citations

In his research, Leskowitz (2017) explores mindfulness, biofeedback …

Information-prominent citations

… applying up-to-the-minute advances in holistic and complementary medicine (Leskowitz, 2017).

Including page numbers in a paraphrase citation

Although APA 7th does not require page numbers when paraphrasing another's work, you may choose to include page numbers particularly when dealing with a lengthy or complex document.

A number of holistic practices and dispositions can be applied when training or coaching athletes to increase the likelihood of athletes getting into 'the Zone' (Leskowitz, 2017, p. 324).

Citing multiple works

When citing multiple works in the same parentheses, citations are presented in alphabetical order, separated with semicolons.


While other positive psychology constructs (e.g., resilience, hope, core self-evaluations, social support) have been studied in people with MS (Alschuler et al., 2018; Arewasikporn et al., 2018; Farber et al., 2015; Lee et al., 2020; Lynch et al., 2001; Madan & Pakenham, 2014), there is a dearth of research examining grit in this population.

The above example is from page 2 of:

Lee, B., Rumrill, P., and Tansey, T. N. (2022, May 16). Examining the role of resilience and hope in grit in multiple sclerosis. Frontiers in Neurology, 13, Article 875133. CC BY. https://doi.org/10.3389/fneur.2022.875133

Example amended to APA referencing style.