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How to Cite a Degree Using APA


The rules for citing an individual's degree are different depending on the style guide that you use. The American Psychological Association's (APA) style guide is mainly used by scholars from the social and behavioral sciences. According to the APA style website: "It was developed eighty years ago by a group of social scientists who wished to establish sound standards of communication." Citing a degree using APA style is quite straightforward, requiring minimum punctuation.

Establish what type of degree you are going to cite and the abbreviation for that degree.

Type the degree recipient's first name then his last name, followed by the degree abbreviation within commas if you are using an in-text citation. Do not use periods when citing the degree. For example, your in-text citation could look something like this: "John Smith, PhD, discovered a revolutionary vaccine."

Type the degree recipient's last name, followed by a comma, a space, his first name, a comma, a space, his degree abbreviation and a period when citing the degree in your references section. For example, your reference could look something like this: "Smith, John, PhD."

About the Author

Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Jordan Whitehouse has been writing on food and drink, small business, and community development since 2004. His work has appeared in a wide range of online and print publications across Canada, including Atlantic Business Magazine, The Grid and Halifax Magazine. Whitehouse studied English literature and psychology at Queen's University, and book and magazine publishing at Centennial College.

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