APA Reference Page

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For models for citing specific sources, see our APA Reference Models

The reference page must include:  the running head, “References” as the title of the page, and the references themselves. It should also be numbered. See the link to the APA Style Template on our Web site for a template formatted according to APA guidelines.

  1. The page header should appear at the top right hand corner of the reference page(s) as previously set up on the cover page and should be numbered along with the rest of the paper.
  2. The title informs people that this is the reference page.  The word “References” should be centered at the top of your page and typed in the normal font with no bold, underline, or quotation marks.
  3. The reference list includes all the sources from which you obtained information that you used within the text. Its purpose is to allow readers to find and use your research for their own projects. Your references should be listed alphabetically. Two or more works by the same author appear in chronological order by date of publication; you should also repeat the name of the author in each entry.


Note that when you know the author’s first and middle initials, you should include both. In some cases, you may not have access to that information or the author may only have a first name. Only in those cases should you omit the middle initial. In order to avoid gender bias, do NOT use full names.

The best advice for documenting references is to find the correct model for the type of source you have. So, for example, if you are documenting a newspaper article, look up the model for newspaper articles and follow the model exactly, paying close attention to what is capitalized and what isn’t and how the reference is punctuated.

In addition, it is important to understand that where you located the source determines the model you must use. If you accessed a newspaper article from an actual printed newspaper, then you would follow one model. If you accessed a newspaper article from the newspaper’s online site, you would follow a different citation model. If you accessed a newspaper from an online subscription service like Lexis-Nexis, you would follow yet another model.

For models for citing specific sources, see our APA Reference Models


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