In-text citations appear in the text of your work. They act as guides to lead your readers to the reference list that you'll provide at the end.
There are two ways you'll use other people's words in your work.
- Quotations: using the author's exact words
- Paraphrases: using the author's ideas in your own words
Here are the rules for providing in-text citations in both of these situations.
Rule: Introduce the quotation with a signal phrase that includes the author's last name followed by the date of publication in parentheses. Put the page number (preceded by "p.") in parentheses at the end of the quotation.
Example: As Davis (1978) reported, "If the existence of a signing ape was unsettling for linguists, it was also startling news for animal behaviorists" (p. 26).
Rule: When the author's name does not appear in the signal phrase, place the author's name, the date, and the page number in parentheses at the end of the quotation. Use commas between items in the parentheses.
Example: "If the existence of a signing ape was unsettling for linguists, it was also startling news for animal behaviorists" (Davis, 1978, p. 26).
Rule: When the quotation is more than 40 words in text, do not use quotation marks, but indent the quote into its own block of text.
Example: Students having a hard time finding databases isn't a new phenomenon. At the University of Washington, they have problems too.
With the addition of so many new databases to the campus online system, many students were having difficulty locating the database they needed. At the same time, the role of Session Manager had evolved. The increased importance of the Session Manager as a selection tool made it a part of the navigation process itself. (Eliasen, 1997, p. 510)
Rule: Work by one author, no quotation marks required.
Example 1: According to Davis (1978), when they learned of an ape's ability to use sign language, both linguists and animal behaviorists were taken by surprise.
Example 2: When they learned of an ape's ability to use sign language, both linguists and animal behaviorists were taken by surprise (Davis, 1978).
APA Headings and Seriation
APA (American Psychological Association) style is most commonly used to cite sources within the social sciences. This resource, revised according to the 6th edition, second printing of the APA manual, offers examples for the general format of APA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the reference page. For more information, please consult the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, (6th ed., 2nd printing).
Contributors: Joshua M. Paiz, Elizabeth Angeli, Jodi Wagner, Elena Lawrick, Kristen Moore, Michael Anderson, Lars Soderlund, Allen Brizee, Russell Keck
Last Edited: 2018-01-16 12:03:43
APA Style uses a unique headings system to separate and classify paper sections. Headings are used to help guide the reader through a document. The levels are organized by levels of subordination, and each section of the paper should start with the highest level of heading. There are 5 heading levels in APA. The 6th edition of the APA manual revises and simplifies previous heading guidelines. Regardless of the number of levels, always use the headings in order, beginning with level 1. The format of each level is illustrated below:
|1||Centered, Boldface, Uppercase and Lowercase Headings|
|2||Left-aligned, Boldface, Uppercase and Lowercase Heading|
|3|| Indented, boldface, lowercase heading with a period. |
|4|| Indented, boldface, italicized, lowercase heading with a period. |
|5|| Indented, italicized, lowercase heading with a period. |
Thus, if the article has four sections, some of which have subsections and some of which don’t, use headings depending on the level of subordination. Section headings receive level one format. Subsections receive level two format. Subsections of subsections receive level three format. For example:
Method (Level 1)
Site of Study (Level 2)
Participant Population (Level 2)
Teachers. (Level 3)
Students. (Level 3)
Results (Level 1)
Spatial Ability (Level 2)
Test one. (Level 3)
Teachers with experience. (Level 4)
Teachers in training. (Level 4)
Test two. (Level 3)
Kinesthetic Ability (Level 2)
In APA Style, the Introduction section never gets a heading and headings are not indicated by letters or numbers. Levels of headings will depend upon the length and organization of your paper. Regardless, always begin with level one headings and proceed to level two, etc.
APA also allows for seriation in the body text to help authors organize and present key ideas. For numbered seriation, do the following:
- Move the navigation bar from the right to the left side of the OWL pages.
- Integrate branded graphics (the Writing Lab and OWL logos) into the text on the OWL homepage.
- Add a search box to every page of the OWL.
- Develop an OWL site map.
- Develop a three-tiered navigation system.
For lists that do not communicate hierarchical order or chronology, use bullets:
- "This version is easier to use."
- "Version two seems better organized."
- "It took me a few minutes to learn how to use this version, but after that, I felt more comfortable with it."
Authors may also use seriation for paragraph length text.
For seriation within sentences, authors may use letters:
On the basis of research conducted by the usability team, OWL staff have completed (a) the OWL site map; (b) integrating graphics with text on the OWL homepage; (c) search boxes on all OWL pages except the orange OWL resources (that is pending; we do have a search page); (d) moving the navigation bar to the left side of pages on all OWL resources except in the orange area (that is pending); (e) piloting the first phase of the three-tiered navigation system, as illustrated in the new Engagement section.
Authors may also separate points with bullet lists:
- the OWL site map;
- integrating graphics with text on the OWL homepage;
- search boxes on all OWL pages except the orange OWL resources (that is pending; we do have a search page);
- moving the navigation bar to the left side of pages on all OWL resources except in the orange area (that is pending);
- piloting the first phase of the three-tiered navigation system, as illustrated in the new Engagement section.