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APA Citation Style (7th ed.): In-text Citations

In-text Citations

When you reference another source use an in-text citation in the body of your paper. Consult the APA Style website for more information about In-Text Citations.

Basic Format:
(Author's Last Name(s) or Organization, Year).


The following examples show how to do in-text citations for summarizing/paraphrasing or using a direct quote.

Summarizing or Paraphrasing

Summarizing or Paraphrasing

Paraphrasing or summarizing the main findings or takeaways from a research article is the preferred method of citing sources in an APA paper. Always include the last name of the author(s) and the year of the article, so your reader can find the full citation in the reference list.

There are 2 formats of in-text citations: narrative and parenthetical. The example below is a narrative citation; the author and year is incorporated into the text.   

According to Shavers (2007), limitations of studying socioeconomic status in research on health disparities include difficulties in collecting data on socioeconomic status and the complications of classifying women, children, and employment status.

A parenthetical in-text citation appearing at the end of a sentence would include the author name and publication date in parentheses. 

The limitations of studying socioeconomic status in research on health disparities include difficulties in collecting data on socioeconomic status and the complications of classifying women, children, and employment status (Shavers, 2007).
 

In-text citations differ depending on the number of authors listed for a work, and if there is a group author.

If you are citing a work with. . .

  • 1 Author. You only need the author's last name and the year. (Abrams, 2018)
  • 2 Authors. Connect both authors' last names with & (ampersand) and include the year. (Wegener & Petty, 1994)
  • 3 or More Authors. If there are 3 or more authors, use et al., which means "and others." (Harris et al., 2018)
  • Group Authors. The first in-text citation will include the abbreviation. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], 2019) 
    In all subsequent citations: (CDC, 2019)

Direct Quotes

If you're quoting the exact words of someone else, introduce the quote with an in-text citation in parentheses. Any sentence punctuation goes after the closing parenthesis. Use direct quotes sparingly! Focus on summarizing the findings from multiple research studies. In nursing, social sciences, and sciences, only use the exact phrasing or argument of an individual when necessary.

  • According to Brown (2019), "Direct quote" (p. 1021).
  • Brown (2019) found that "Direct quote" (p. 1021).
  • [Some other introduction] "Direct quote" (Brown, 2019, p. 1021).

If you're directly quoting more than 40 words, use a blockquote. Block quotes don't need quotation marks. Instead, indent the text 1/2" as a visual cue that you are citing. The in-text citation in parentheses goes after the punctuation of the quote.

Shavers (2007) study found the following:

While research studies have established that socioeconomic status influences disease incidence, severity and access to healthcare, there has been relatively less study of the specific manner in which low SES influences receipt of quality care and consequent morbidity and mortality among patients with similar disease characteristics, particularly among those who have gained access to the healthcare system. (p. 1021)