How to Cite a Presidential Speech in APA Style

American Psychological Association citation style is commonly used in the social sciences. APA style requires you to cite quoted, paraphrased or summarized sources within your paper, and also to provide a list of full bibliographic references at the end of your paper. According to the APA Style Blog, the proper format for citing a presidential speech depends on the type of source the speech was published in.

Step 1

List the last name of the author of your source, followed by a comma, followed by the year in which the source was published for an in-text citation. Your in-text citation should be enclosed in parentheses.

For example:

(Smith, 2009)

Step 2

Position your in-text citation so that it directly follows the paraphrased or quoted source, but appears before any concluding punctuation such as a period.

For example:

Reagan once again avoided specific commitment in August of that year, stating in a speech at Columbia University that "what needs to be done will be done" (Smith, 2009).

Step 3

Organize your full bibliographic reference in the format appropriate to the type of source you are using. For example, if you were quoting the speech from a published book, your reference should be arranged as follows:

Author's Last Name, First Initial. (Year of Book's Publication). Title of book in italics. City of Publication: Name of Publisher.

Smith, F. (2009). Reagan's tenure. Ithaca, NY: Presidential Press.


Note that according to APA style, you should only capitalize the first letter of the title of the source. If there is a subtitle, the title and subtitle should be separated by a colon, and the first letter of the subtitle should also be capitalized. The first letters of proper nouns that appear in the title and subtitle should also be capitalized. For example:

Reagan's tenure: The sorrow of the Nicaraguan people.

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