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How to Cite Sources in AMA Style


The AMA citation format is taken from the American Medical Association Manual of Style and is used primarily by the scientific community for drafting and publishing scholarly journals. Sources in AMA style are cited in a uniform, specific order, listing author or authors, work title and publication date among other pertinent information.

Cite a book written by a single author like this: author's last name, comma, author's first initial, period, book title in italics (all major words are capitalized), period, publisher, (if more than one location cite the state of the publishing house's location followed by a colon, then cite the publisher's name), semicolon, publication year, period. Here's an example: Day, L. Finding Reason (in italics). Ibsen Publishing Co.; 2008.

Note a book with multiple authors as in step one, but with the authors listed in alphabetical order according to last names, followed by their first initials. Each name is separated by a comma but there is no comma between the last name and first initial. For example: Day L, Smith J. Finding Reason (in italics). Ibsen Publishing Co.; 2008.

Refer to a journal or magazine article for which you have the volume number like this: author's last name, space (no comma), author's first initial, period, article title (first word in the title and proper names capitalized only), period, publication name in italics, period, publication year, semicolon, (no space) publication volume number, colon (no space), starting page number, dash, ending page number, period. For example: Day L. Finding reason. Scientific American (in italics). 2008;212:4-7.

Credit a journal or magazine or newspaper article for which you do not have the volume number by author's last name, space (no comma), author's first initial, period, article title (first word in the title and proper names capitalized only), period, publication name in italics, period, publication month, space, publication day, comma, publication year, semicolon (no space), publication section number (if any), starting page number, period. Here's an example: Day L. Finding reason. Scientific American (in italics). May 4, 2008;A3.

List an encyclopedia article by author's last name, author's first initial, period, article title (first word capitalized only), "In" colon, editor's name, period, encyclopedia title (in italics), period, "Vol," space, volume number, period, edition title (if any), publisher's location, colon, publishing house name, semicolon, publication year, colon, starting page, dash, ending page. For example: Day L. Science in fiction. In: Sands LT, editorial director; Walsh C, ed-in-chief; Grimm KW, managing ed. The Encyclopedia Americana (in italics). Vol 14. International ed. Ellisbury, Conn: Grolier Incorporated; 1998:341-395.

Name a book article or chapter by the article or chapter author's last name, author's first initial, period, article or chapter title (first word and proper names only capitalized), period, "In," colon, editor's last name, editor's first initial, comma, "ed.," article or chapter title (all major words capitalized and in italics), period, place of publication, semicolon, publication year, colon, starting page number, dash, ending page number, period. For example: James NE. Two sides of reason: the Earth myth according to Kreel and Spraunce. In: Palmo D, ed. Spectre Fantastic (in italics). Dansport, Conn: Greenleaf; 1999:212-228.

Reference information found on a website by author's last name, author's first initial, period, information title (first word and proper name capitalized only), period, website name (all major words capitalized), period, publication year, period, "Available at:," web address, period, "Accessed," access month, access day, comma, access year, period. For example: Lynn T. DSN trails and telethons review. Psi Chic: Bradey's Science Club Web site. 2006. Available at: http://www.bradey.edu/campusorg/psichic/DS9/ep/503r.htm. Accessed November 8, 2007.

Tip
  • If for some reason you are unable to use italics for those portions of a citation that requires italics under AMA style, underline the portion of the citation that would otherwise be italicized.