Skip to main content

APA Referencing Style Guide

This guide introduces the APA referencing style with examples of citation styles for different types of resources.

Film & television

Film / Movie

In-text citations guide  

Reference list entry:

Scorsese, M. (Producer), & Lonergan, K. (Writer/Director). (2000). You can count on me [Motion picture]. United States: Paramount Pictures.

Television series

Reference list entry:

Laing, J. (Producer). (2006). Outrageous fortune [Television series]. New Zealand: South Pacific Pictures.

Single episode in a television series

Reference list entry:

Egan, D. (Writer), & Alexander, J. (Director). (2005). Failure to communicate [Television series episode]. In D. Shore (Executive producer), House; New York, NY: Fox Broadcasting.

Television film online - subscription only

Reference list entry:

Haskell, C. (Director). (2011). Tangiwai [Television film]. Available from http://www.etv.org.nz

Video & DVD

In-text citations guide  

YouTube video blog post

Reference list entry:

Norton, R. (2006, November 4). How to train a cat to operate a light switch [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/w?v=IkMOd9PVuKg

  • When the YouTube video is part of a series of blog posts the subject line of the message is not in italics

YouTube video

Reference list entry:

Bellofolletti. (2009, April 8). Ghost caught on surveillance camera [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dq1ms2JhYBI&feature=related

  • If only the screen name is available, in this case Bellofolletti, give that as the author

Reference list entry:

Dunning, B. [volleybrian]. (2011, January 12). inFact: Conspiracy theories [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AEijdTeBMRM&index =5&feature=plcp

  • For retrievability, the person who posted the video is put in the author position
  • If they have a screen name put that in [...] immediately after, using capitals or not, just as it appears on YouTube

Video podcast - iTunes

Reference list entry:

Dunning, B. (Producer). (2011, January 12). inFact: Conspiracy theories [Video podcast]. Retrieved from http://itunes.apple.com/

  • Videos can be available in many places online - cite the version that you viewed

Streaming video - Kanopy

Reference list entry:

Marcom Projects (Producer). (2004). Media literacy: Media ethics [Streaming video]. Retrieved from Kanopy Video Streaming database.

DVD online

Reference list entry:

American Psychological Association (Producer). (2000). Responding therapeutically to patient expressions of sexual attraction [DVD]. Available from http://www.apa.org/pubs/videos/

  • Include either the full URL (if you watched it online) or the supplier's homepage URL

 

Notes on the Reference List

A reference list only lists the sources you have referred to in your writing.  

The purpose of the reference list is to allow your sources to be be found by your reader. It also gives credit to authors whose work and ideas you have considered.  All references cited in the text must appear in the reference list, except for personal communications (such as conversations or emails) which cannot be retrieved.  

A bibliography is different from a reference list as it lists all the sources used during your research and background reading, not just the ones you refer to in your writing.  

Reference list example

References

Alred, G. J., Brusaw, C. T., & Oliu, W. E. (2009). The business writer’s handbook. New York, NY: St Martin's Press.

Best, A. (2004). International history of the twentieth century. Retrieved from http://www.netlibrary.com

Easton, B. (2008). Does poverty affect health? In K. Dew & A. Matheson (Eds.), Understanding health inequalities in Aotearoa New Zealand (pp. 97–106). Dunedin, New Zealand: Otago University Press.

Flesch, R. (n.d.). How to write plain English. Retrieved April 12, 2009, from http://www.mang.canterbury.ac.nz/writing_guide /writing/flesch.shtml

​Global warming. (2009, June 1). Retrieved June 4, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_warming

Li, S., & Seale, C. (2007). Learning to do qualitative data analysis: An observational study of doctoral work. Qualitative Health Research, 17, 1442–1452. https://doi.org/10.1177/1049732307306924  

Radio New Zealand. (2008). Annual report 2007-2008. Retrieved from http://static.radionz.net.nz/assets /pdf_file/0010/179676/Radio_NZ_Annual_Report_2008.pdf  

Read, E. (2007, November 1). Myth-busting gen Y. New Zealand Management. Retrieved from http://www.management.co.nz

Formatting

Title Include the title 'References' (one word, beginning with a capital letter, centred, and not in italics

 

Indent Hanging indent your references (space bar in 5 - 7 spaces for the second and subsequent lines of each reference)
Space between references In general double-space between references
Ampersand Use for 2 - 6 authors, use & before the final author
One author, two publications Order by year of publication, the earlier one first.  Same year of publication for both - add 'a' and 'b' after the year, inside the brackets. Include this in the in text citation. example: Baheti, J. R. (2001a).
URLs Remove the underlines from URLs so that any underscores ( _ ) can be seen
Same first author, different second author Order alphabetically by second or subsequent authors
Upper case letters (capital letters)

Journal title - use headline style; i.e. capitalise all the words, except articles and prepositions

Book title or article title (in a journal, magazine or newspaper) - use sentence style; i.e. capitalise the first word of the title, and subtitle (after the colon), and any proper names

Place of publication

USA publishers give the city in full and the abbreviation for the state. 
New York, NY
Springfield, MA

Publishers outside the USA: Give the city in full and the country in full
London, England
Auckland, New Zealand

Square brackets

If format, medium or description information is important for a resource to be retrieved or identified, use square brackets after the title to include this detail:  

Scorsese, M. (Producer), & Lonergan, K. (Writer/Director). (2000). You can
    count on me [Motion picture]. United States: Paramount Pictures.  

 

Secondary citations

A secondary citation is where you are citing information or quotes the author of your reference has taken from source that you have not read.

In-text citation:

Seidenberg and McClelland’s study, conducted in 1990 (as cited in Coltheart, Curtis, Atkins, & Haller, 1993), shows that ...
... as some studies show (Seidenberg & McClelland, as cited in Coltheart, Curtis, Atkins, & Haller, 1993).
  • Name the author of the original work in your text, cite the secondary source in in-text citation: (as cited in ..., 1993)

Reference list entry: 

Coltheart, M., Curtis, B. Atkins, P., & Haller, M. (1993). Models of reading aloud: Dual-route and parallel-distributed-processing approaches. Psychological Review, 100, 589–608.

  • Give the secondary source in the reference list.