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How to Make a Works Cited Page in APA Format


You've finished writing your paper. You've edited your writing, checked your facts and confirmed everything is in order. All that's left to do is provide a list of the resources you used in your research. American Psychological Association (APA) style requires a reference list on a separate page or pages after the body of your paper. There are a few simple rules governing the organization of this page and how you cite your sources. Using these will ensure you get the best marks on your citations.

Formatting the References Page

Your references page should be a separate page after the final page of your paper, and any endnotes. Center the word "References" at the top of the page, in plain text -- not boldfaced, italicized or underlined.

Your reference page is a list of all the sources that are cited in the body of your paper. Your references should be listed alphabetically, from A to Z, by the last name of each source's author. In the case of a source with multiple authors, it is organized by the last name of the author listed first by that source.

The entirety of your references page should be double-spaced. If any of your source's entries require more than one line, each line past the first should be indented one-half inch.

Book Sources

When citing a book on your reference list, APA uses the following format:

Author, First Initial(s). (Publication year). Title of work: Subtitle if applicable. Location: Publisher.

For example:

Pynchon, T. (1995). Gravity's Rainbow. New York, NY: Penguin Books.

If a work has multiple authors, they are are separated by commas, with an ampersand following the comma between the last two authors:

Heimberg, J., & Gomberg, D. (2006). Would you rather ...?: The ultimate challenge. New York, NY: Metro Books.

If the author of the book is unavailable or unknown, the title is placed before the date:

The Book of Common Prayer. (1979). New York, NY: The Church Hymnal Corporation.

Articles in Periodicals and Books

If you are writing an academic research paper, it's likely you're using sources from a scholarly journal or collection of articles. These are cited as follows:

Author, First Initial(s). (Year). Article title. Periodical title, volume number (issue number), pages. Web address. (if applicable)

For example:

Leal, Walter S. (2014). Deciphering the Rosetta stone of insect chemical communication. American Entymologist, 60(4), 223-230. http://ae.oxfordjournals.org/content/60/4/223.

If you are citing an article that is published as part of a collection in a book, the following format is used instead:

Author, First Initials(s). Article Title. In Editor First Initial(s), Editor Lastname (Ed.), Book title (pages of article). Publisher Location: Publisher.

For example:

Winquist, C.E. (1998). Person. In M.C. Taylor, Critical terms for religious studies (pp. 225 - 238). Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press.

Online Sources

If you need to include a website on your citation page, the following style is used:

Author, First Initial(s). (Year, Month Date Published). Page title. Website name. Retrieved Access Date, from URL.

For example:

Mowshowitz, Z. (2000, December 31). Clear the land and the fundamental turn. The Dojo. Retrieved February 24, 2015, from http://www.starcitygames.com/article/3688_Clear-The-Land-And-The-Fundamental-Turn.html.

When citing a blog post, [web log post] is included in brackets after the page title.

About the Author

Jon Zamboni began writing professionally in 2010. He has previously written for The Spiritual Herald, an urban health care and religious issues newspaper based in New York City, and online music magazine eBurban. Zamboni has a Bachelor of Arts in religious studies from Wesleyan University.

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