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How to Cite a Paragraph in APA


APA, also known as American Psychological Association, is a citation style used to attribute sources when writing a formal document or paper. Normally, when you cite using APA format, you would include short quotations directly in the body of the text. However, if you are citing a paragraph that is longer than 40 words, you must create a free standing "block quote" to separate the paragraph from the rest of the document.

Attribute the source of a new line of text. You must indicate the name of the author and the year in which the information was published. At the end of the attribution, type a colon to signify the start of the paragraph quotation. Your attribution should look something like this:

Smith (2003) said the following:

Return to the line below your attribution, indent five spaces and paste the paragraph quote in its entirety. Do not place the quotation between quotation marks.

Cite the page number at which the original paragraph was retrieved from after the quote. Your page attribution should look like this:

(p. 404)

Include the source in your final list of references, placing it in alphabetical order by the last name of the author(s).

About the Author

Elyse James began writing professionally in 2006 after deciding to pursue a career in journalism. She has written for "The Algonquin Times" as a general assignment reporter and published blogs and articles on Webcitybeat. James holds a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Ottawa.