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APA Referencing (APA 7th edition)

This guide shows students and staff how to reference using the APA Referencing style.

General rules

In text citations

In text citations follow the same basic format for all resources - Work the author of the work  and the year into the body of your work e.g. (Attenborough, 2018).

For more, refer to the In-text citations page of this guide.


Reference lists
  • If a date cannot be found, use (n.d.) in the date field

  • Reference lists should be arranged in alphabetical order by author. All lines after the first line in each individual reference should be indented by 1.25cm. For more information on setting out your reference list, refer to the 'Reference List Example' page of this guide.

Print books and eBooks

Generally, the same referencing rules apply for both print books and eBooks. However, if the book has a DOI, this should be added to the usual reference list entry. Refer to the final section of this page for examples on referencing books with a DOI.

For general information on how references change depending on the number of authors refer to the tab 'Journal/Magazine Article (print or online)'.

Book with one author

In-text citation:

Jean Muir was well-known for designs using tailored matte jersey (Stemp, 2007, p. 84).


Reference List:

Author's surname, Initials. (Year). Title in italics (edition) - if not the first edition. Publisher.


Stemp, S. (2007). Jean Muir: Beyond fashion. Antique Collectors' Club.

Quinlan, C. (2019). Business research methods (2nd ed.). Cengage Learning.


Each reference should have any lines after the first line indented by 1.25cm. This is known as hanging indentation. 

For books, capitalise the first word of the title, the first word of any subtitle, and any proper nouns.

Book with two authors

In-text citation:

The chain of survival varies whether the patient is in or out of hospital (Sorrentino & Remmert, 2017, p. 831).


Sorrentino and Remmert (2017, p. 831) discuss how the chain of survival varies whether the patient is in or out of hospital.


Perry, Potter and Ostendorf (2017, p. 271) argue that health literacy is increasingly important in both the hospital and home environment when caring for patients.


Reference list:

Surname, Initials., & Surname, Initials. (Year). Title in italics (Edition -if not the first). Publisher name.


Sorrentino, S. A.,  & Remmert, L. N. (2017). Mosby's textbook for nursing assistants (9th ed.). Mosby.


 Points to remember:

  • In a list of multiple authors, place a comma after the full-stop following an initial EXCEPT when it is the last name in the list.
  • When referring to a work by two authors, use '&' rather than 'and' in the reference list and inside the brackets of the in-text citation but on all other occasions use 'and'.

Book with three or more authors

Where there are three or more authors of a book, include only the name of the first author plus 'et al' in all in-text citations. Include the details of all authors in the reference list.  


In-text citation:

Effective communication is a key practice for nurses both in academic and practical contexts (Lawrence et al, 2015, p. 70)  


Reference list:

Surname, Initials., Surname, Initials.,  Surname, Initials., & Surname, Initials. (Year). Title in italics (Edition -if not the first). Publisher name.   


Lawrence, J., Perrin, C. , & Kiernan, E. (2015).  Building professional nursing communicationCambridge University Press.

Book where the author is unknown, or has chosen to remain anonymous

A book with an unknown author:

In-text citation:

If the author or editor of a book is unknown, use the title of the book in place of the family name of the author.

In text citation :

Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabanna have the wonderful ability to "... dress a woman like a woman ... even if she wants to dress like a man" (10 years of Dolce & Gabanna, 1996, p. 136).

 Reference list:

Title in italics (edition). (date). Publisher.


10 years of Dolce & Gabbana. (1996). Leonardo Arte.


 Points to remember

  • When this book is put in the reference list, it will appear under T  for Ten.  Alphabetise entries beginning with numbers as if they were spelled out in full.
  • Put titles of books in italics in the reference, and in  the in-text citation.
  • Although only the initial letter of the first word should be a capital letter, in this case Dolce and Gabanna have initial capitals because they are people's names.  Names of countries and organisations should also be capitalised.
  • In text, use the first few words of the title, or the whole title if it is short.

A book with an anonymous author.

If the book's author has chosen to remain anonymous, rather than being unknown, use 'Anonymous' as the author's name for both the in-text citation, and the reference list. In this case, you can follow the rules for referencing books with a single author.

Edited book

Reference list :

Surname, Initials. (Ed.) (Year). Title in italics (edition -if not the first). Publisher.


Daly, J., Speedy, S., & Jackson, D. (Eds.) (2014). Contexts of nursing: An introduction. Elsevier Australia.  


In text citation:

It is extremely important to give an explanation to patients before undertaking a complex procedure (Daly, Speedy & Jackson, 2014).


  • There is no need to add (Ed.) to the in-text citation for edited works.
  • If there is more than one editor, follow general guidelines for number of authors, and use the abbreviations (Eds.) in the Reference list.

Chapter in an edited book

In-text citation:

Clark (2005, p. 168) notes the change in attitudes to second hand clothing in Hong Kong, which occurred in the 1990s.


Second hand clothing, formerly only for those who could afford nothing else, became fashionable in Hong Kong society during the 1990s (Clark, 2005).

Reference list:

Chapter author's Surname, Initials. (Year). Chapter title. In Editors initials and surnames (Eds.), Book title in italics (Edition, if not the first, pp. pages). Publisher.


Clark, H. (2005). Second hand fashion in Hong Kong. In A. Palmer &  H. Clark (Eds.) Old clothes, new looks: Second hand fashion (pp.309-330). Berg Publishers.

Jenner, P. (2002). The noble art of management.  In B. Brown (Ed.) The MMF music manager's manual (pp. 31-38). Music Manager's Forum.

 Points to remember

  • Use the surname of the author of the chapter in your in-text citation.
  • The abbreviation for 'editor' is Ed. and the abbreviation for 'editors' is Eds. - with full stops at the end.
  • The abbreviation for 'edition' is ed.
  • The general rule for full-stops and abbreviations is that you need a full-stop at the end of each abbreviation.

Referencing a book with a DOI

Books with DOIs are referenced in the same way as books without DOIs, except that the DOI is also included at the end of the reference list entry. DOIs can be presented either as hyperlinks (usually either blue font, or blue font, underlined) or as plain text, not underlined, and should start with either http or https - if your DOI does not start like this, you should be able to search online to find the correct format.

There is no change to the in-text citation


An authored book with a DOI

Peterkin, S.J., & Snape, J. (2020). Infectious diseases and their impact on the community (2nd ed.). McRobinson Publishing.


A chapter in an edited book with a DOI

Hulser, R. (2019). Altmetrics in the museum environment. In E.Lasda (Ed.), New metrics: Practical assessment of research impact (pp. 115-130). Emerald Publishing Limited.