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Citation Guides: Parenthetical Citations

How to format in-text citations in APA style

About this guide

This guide is based on The Bluebook. For more details and examples, consult The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation (19th ed.) 2010. (REF KF 245 U55  2010).

  • Note, however, that the APA style incorporates various changes into the Bluebook style.
  • The Bluebook style is not used to cite legal periodical articles or books. Use the regular APA style.
  • To cite legal materials from states other than Massachusetts, follow the forms given below for Massachusetts, but substitute the abbreviations found on pages 170-228 of the Bluebook.
  • Some Web-based databases do not include the data required to cite according to these rules. Lexis-Nexis is the best source.

Additional APA Style Guide Websites

Parenthetical Citations in Text

Basic Formats

If the author's name is not included in the narrative:
     (Author's Last Name, Year of publication)

If the author's name is not included in the narrative and a direct quote is used:
     (Author's Last Name, Year of publication, Page number)

If the author's name is included in the narrative:
     (Year, page range)

If the author's name is included in the narrative and a direct quote is used, the page number may appear after the quote:
     (Page number)


Work by One Author

In a recent study of reaction times, Rogers (1994) described the method...


Work by One Author, specific page cited

This is the definition of the eyewitness (Bekerian, 1993, p. 575)


Work by Two Authors

(Walker & Allen, 2004)


Work by Three to Five Authors (first reference in text - all authors included)

"The most effective way of teaching Spanish…is not by rote" (Valdés, Lozano, García-Moya, 1982).


Work by Three to Five Authors (subsequent references in text - one author et al.)

...others have made this point well (Valdés et al., 1981).


Work by Six of More Authors

...a recent study confirms this (Jones et al., 1988).


Work with No Author (Newspaper article)
("New Drug," 1993, p. C3).

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