September 25, 2018

How to Cite a Government Report in APA Style

Chelsea blog 2by Chelsea Lee

The basic citation for a government report follows the authordatetitlesource format of APA Style references. Here is a template:

Reference list:

Government Author. (year). Title of report: Subtitle of report if applicable (Report No. 123). Retrieved from http://xxxxx

In text:

(Government Author, year)

 

Note that the report number may not be present, or, when present, the wording may vary. Follow the wording shown on your report to write your reference (see how the wording is adjusted for the National Cancer Institute example later in this post).

Who Is the Author of a Government Report?

Most of the time the government department or agency is used as the author for an APA Style government report reference. Sometimes individual people are also credited as having written the report; however, their names do not appear in the APA Style reference unless their names also appear on the cover of the report (vs. within the report somewhere, such as on an acknowledgments page). So again, the name(s) on the cover or title page go in the reference, for reasons of retrievability, and most of the time, it is the name of the agency. 

Reference list (recommended format):

National Cancer Institute. (2016). Taking part in cancer treatment research studies (Publication No. 16-6249). Retrieved from https://www.cancer.gov/publications/patient-education/CRS.pdf

In text (recommended format):

(National Cancer Institute, 2016)

How Many Layers of Government Agencies Should Be Listed?

Government agencies frequently list the full hierarchy of departments on their reports. As anyone familiar with bureaucracy knows, this can add up to a lot of layers. For example, the author of the National Cancer Institute report in the example above might be fully written out as follows:

Reference list (long form, correct but not recommended):

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute. (2016). Taking part in cancer treatment research studies (Publication No. 16-6249). Retrieved from https://www.cancer.gov/publications/patient-education/CRS.pdf

In text (long form, correct but not recommended):

(U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute, 2016)

You might notice that this author name is rather lengthy! Listing the full hierarchy of agencies as shown on the report in question (from largest to smallest) is correct; however, it is also correct to list the most specific responsible agency only (in this case, the National Cancer Institute).

We recommend the shorter, more specific format for a few reasons.

  • Our users have expressed to us that this shorter name form makes it easier to write references and in-text citations.
  • The shorter form makes it easier for readers to differentiate between reports authored by a variety of agencies. Imagine, for example, a paper containing many government reports; the citations and references could quickly overwhelm the text if the long form were used.

However, if using only the most specific responsible agency would cause confusion (e.g., if you are citing institutes with the same name from two countries, such as the United States and Canada), then include the parent agencies in the author element to differentiate them.

How Does the In-Text Citation Correspond to the Reference List Entry?

Ensure that the name of the government author you use in the in-text citation matches the name of the author in the reference list entry exactly. Do not use the long form in one spot and the short form in the other. An exception is that you can introduce an abbreviation for the government agency in the text if you will be referring to it frequently. Read this blog post to learn how to abbreviate group author names.

Washington-dc-skyline-poster-vector-id497540078

September 19, 2018

How to Cite Edition, Volume, and Page Numbers for Books

David Becker



By David Becker

Are you trying to create a reference for the second edition of a multivolume handbook but aren’t sure where or how to include the edition, volume, and page numbers? This is a frequent conundrum that APA Style users have brought to our attention. Their most common question is whether these numbers should be presented together or within separate parentheses.

When citing a chapter, the edition number, the volume number (which is different from a journal’s volume number), and the page range are all enclosed within the same parentheses—in that order—after the title of the book, and they are separated by commas. In a reference to a whole book, cite the edition and volume numbers—separated by a comma—but do not cite a page range.

Here are some templates for citing print versions of books that include edition and volume numbers:

Chapter in an Edited Book

Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Year). Title of chapter. In C. C. Editor & D. D. Editor (Eds.), Title of book (xx ed., Vol. xx, pp. xxx–xxx). Location: Publisher.

Authored Book

Author, A. A. (Year). Title of book (xx ed., Vol. xx). Location: Publisher.

Edited Book

Editor, E. E. (Ed.). (Year). Title of book (xx ed., Vol. xx). Location: Publisher.

Entire books and individual chapters are sometimes assigned their own unique digital object identifiers (DOIs). If the book or chapter you are citing lists a DOI, include it at the end of your reference in place of the publisher information, without a period.

Cite the edition of the book you used. If there aren’t multiple editions of the book, or if it isn’t a multivolume work, then do not include this information in your reference.

Here are a few sample references to chapters in edited books with parenthetical edition, volume, and/or page numbers:

Hamilton, R. B., & Newman, J. P. (2018). The response modulation hypothesis: Formulation, development, and implications for psychopathy. In C. J. Patrick (Ed.), Handbook of psychopathy (2nd ed., pp. 80–93). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Slee, R. (2014). Inclusive schooling as an apprenticeship in democracy? In L. Florian (Ed.), The SAGE handbook of special education (2nd ed., Vol. 1, pp. 217–229). London, England: SAGE Publications.

Tetrick, L. E., & Peiró, J. M. (2012). Occupational safety and health. In S. W. J. Kozlowksi (Ed.), The Oxford handbook of organizational psychology (Vol. 2, pp. 1228–1244). https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199928286.013.0036

Some publishers title each volume of a multivolume work. In this case, include the volume number within the title when constructing your reference instead of citing it parenthetically. Here is an example reference to a volume with its own title (see also Example 24 on page 204 in the sixth edition of Publication Manual):

Wyer, M. (2018). In the company of feminist science. In C. B. Travis, J. W. White, S. L. Cook, & K. F. Wyche (Eds.), APA handbook of the psychology of women: Vol. 2. Perspectives on women’s private and public lives (pp. 459–474). https://doi.org/10.1037/0000060-025

In APA Style, individual chapters from authored books are not cited in the reference list. We recommend citing the whole book instead. Then, you can cite specific chapters in text as needed.

When citing an entire multivolume work, include the full range of volumes in parentheses. If the volumes were published on different dates, cite the range of years as the publication date.

Here are some sample references to whole books:

Haight, J. M. (Ed.). (2012). The safety professionals handbook: Vol 1. Management applications (2nd ed.). Park Ridge, IL: American Society of Safety Engineers.

Kanegsberg, B., & Kanegsberg, E. (Eds.). (2011). Handbook for critical cleaning (2nd ed., Vols. 1–2). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Travis, C. B., White, J. W., Cook, S. L., & Wyche, K. F. (Eds.). (2018). APA handbook of the psychology of women: Vol. 2. Perspectives on women’s private and public lives. https://doi.org/10.1037/0000060-000

Wypych, G. (2017). Handbook of odors in plastic materials (2nd ed.). Toronto, Canada: ChemTec Publishing.

If you have any additional questions about citing edition, volume, and page numbers, or about any other APA Style issue, feel free to email us at StyleExpert@apa.org.

Book Volumes

September 03, 2018

How to Quote a Foreign-Language Source and Its Translation

 Chelsea blog 2 by Chelsea Lee

 Dear Style Expert,

How do I format quotations from books or articles written in a foreign language? Do I have to present the quotation in both the original language and in translation, or do I present only a translation? What do the citation and reference list entries look like? Help me, please!

Dear reader,

When you want to quote a source from a language that is different from the language you are writing in, you have the choice of presenting

  • your own translation of the quotation (without the foreign language) or
  • both the original passage in the foreign language and your translation.

Either choice is acceptable. You might choose to present both languages if you want to draw attention to how something was said in the foreign language (e.g., if you are conducting a linguistic analysis or a qualitative study), especially if you expect your readers to be multilingual. Otherwise, presenting just the translation is fine.

Previously on the blog we have addressed how to present your own translation (without the foreign language) of a quotation from a published source, such as a book or journal article.

If you want to present a quotation in both a foreign language and in translation, place the foreign-language quotation in quotation marks if it is less than 40 words long and in a block quotation without quotation marks if it is 40 words or more. After the foreign-language quotation, place an English translation of the quotation in square brackets. Then add the citation for the quotation.

Here is an example:

In text:

Research has addressed that “Les jeunes qui terminent un placement à l’âge de la majorité dans le cadre du système de protection de la jeunesse sont plus vulnérables” [Youth who finish a placement at the age of majority in the framework of the youth protection system are more vulnerable] (Bussières, St-Germain, Dubé, & Richard, 2017, p. 354).

In the reference list, translate the title of the foreign-language work into the language you are writing in (here, that’s English). Otherwise, the details of the foreign-language source should stay as they were published, to aid in retrievability. Note for this example that Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne is a bilingual journal that is published with a bilingual title; if the journal title were only in French it would not be necessary to translate it in the reference.

Reference list:

Bussières, E.-L., St-Germain, A., Dubé, M., & Richard, M.-C. (2017). Efficacité et efficience des programmes de transition à la vie adulte: Une revue systématique [Effectiveness and efficiency of adult transition programs: A systematic review]. Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne, 58, 354–365. https://doi.org/10.1037/cap0000104 

Other Questions?

If your quotation is from a research participant rather than a published source, please see our posts on that topic:

Do you have other foreign-language quotation questions? Leave a comment below.

Language signs

August 28, 2018

Best of the APA Style Blog: 2018 Edition

70869049Each fall we put together a “best of” post to highlight blog posts and apastyle.org pages that we think are helpful both for new students and to those who are familiar with APA Style. You can get the full story in our sixth edition Publication Manual (also available as an e-book) and our APA Style Guide to Electronic References, in addition to the pages linked below.

Getting Started

What is APA Style? 
Why is APA Style needed? 
Basics of APA Style Tutorial (free) 
FAQs about APA Style

Sample Papers

Sample Paper 1 
Sample Paper 2
Sample meta-analysis paper 
Sample published APA article

APA Style Basics Principles

How in-text citations work 
How reference list entries work 
What's the difference between references and citations? 
How to handle missing information 
How to find the best example you need
   in the Publication Manual
"Cite what you see, cite what you use" 
How to avoid plagiarism

Grammar and spelling

The use of singular "they"
Punctuation Junction
 (what happens when punctuation marks collide)
Use of first person
Spelling tips 
Grammar tips

Student and Researcher Resources

Line spacing recommendations for each part of an APA Style paper
How to format your CV or resume
Citing a class or lecture
School intranet or Canvas/Blackboard class website materials
Classroom course packs and custom textbooks 
Quoting and discussing research participant data
Reference lists versus bibliographies 
MLA versus APA Style (in-text citations and the reference list)
Student Research Webinars From APA and Psi Chi
Updated APA Style JARS: Advancing Psychological Research

References to Electronic Resources

Website references and in-text citations to websites
Citing multiple pages from the same website
E-books
Mobile apps
Social media (Facebook, Twitter, and Google+) pages and posts
Hashtags
Blog posts and blog comments 
Online-only journal articles
YouTube videos and TED Talks 
Software
New DOI display guidelines

Copyright

Understanding copyright status
Determining whether permission is needed to reproduce a table or figure
Securing permission
Writing the copyright permission statement for reproduced tables and figures
Attributing data in tables

Other “How-To” Citation Help

Translated sources (vs. your own translation)
Secondary sources (sources you found in another source) and why to avoid them
illustrators and illustrated books
Interviews
Legal references 
Paraphrased work

Paper Formatting

Direct quotes and Block quotations
Paraphrasing
Capitalization
Fonts
Headings 
Lists (letterednumbered, or bulleted
Margins
Running heads
Spelling
Numbers

Statistics
Keywords (vs. key terms)
Hyperlink formatting

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August 06, 2018

Never Space Out on Line Spacing Again

Chelsea blog 2by Chelsea Lee

Feeling spacey on how to line space your APA Style paper? Follow this handy guide to never have line spacing questions again.

 

 

Line Spacing Recommendations for APA Style

Element

Spacing

Note

Title page

Double

 

Abstract

Double

 

Text

Double

 

Footnotes (at bottom of page)

Single

Use the default settings for footnotes in your word-processing program (in Microsoft Word and APA Style CENTRAL this is single spacing)

References

Double

Double space within references and between references

Table body

Single, 1.5, or double

Spacing inside the cells of a table can be adjusted to best present your data

Table title, number, and note

Double

Double space the table number and title above the table body as well as any table note below the table

Figure (any text in the image)

Single, 1.5, or double

Spacing of any text in an image can be adjusted to best present your information

Figure caption

Double

Double space the figure caption below the figure image

Appendices

Double

 

Displayed equations (on their own line)

Triple or quadruple

This means to add one or two extra blank lines above or below the equation

When to Add Extra Lines

In general, it is not necessary to add extra blank lines to an APA Style paper (an exception is around displayed equations, where you can add one or two blank lines before and/or after the equation to make it more visible to the reader).

If your tables and figures are embedded within the text, rather than displayed on their own pages after the reference list, then you can also add an extra blank line above and/or below the table or figure to visually separate it from any text on the same page.  It is not usually necessary to add lines to avoid widowed or orphaned headings (meaning headings at the bottom of a page; though ask your professor to be sure if you are concerned about typesetting, such as with a dissertation).

Other Sections

The default line spacing recommendation for APA Style is to use double-spacing throughout a paper. If your paper requires a section not addressed in this post or in the Publication Manual, then we recommend you use double spacing unless you have been instructed otherwise. For example, if your dissertation or thesis requires a table of contents (including lists of tables and figures), then we recommend that you generate it using an automatic table of contents function (such as the one in Microsoft Word). The default spacing of the table of contents function is acceptable, as is changing the spacing of the table of contents to double if desired.  

 

Line spacing

July 16, 2018

How to Quote Research Participants in Translation

Chelsea blog 2 by Chelsea Lee

Dear Style Expert,

How do I format quotations from research participants who I interviewed as part of my work when those quotations are in a foreign language? Do I have to present the quotation in both the original language and in translation, or do I present only the original or only a translation? How do I cite these quotes? Help me, please!

 

Dear reader,

Before we dig into the foreign-language aspects of this question, read the blog post on how to discuss research participant data in general, including how to present participant quotations that do not require translation and how to assign pseudonyms to participants. That post also explains the rationale for why research participant quotations do not have typical APA Style citations and reference list entries.

Now, presenting a research participant quotation that was originally in a foreign language is largely the same as presenting a quotation that does not require translation. You have the option of presenting just a translation of the quotation or of presenting both the original and the translation. You might choose to present both languages if you want to draw attention to how something was said in the foreign language (e.g., if you are conducting a linguistic analysis or a qualitative study), especially if your readers are multilingual. Otherwise, presenting just the translation is fine. We do not recommend presenting the original without a translation, as your readers might not understand it!

Presenting Quotations in Two Languages

If you want to present a research participant’s quotation in both a foreign language and in translation, the method of doing so is largely the same as for foreign-language quotations from published sources: Place quotations of less than 40 words in quotation marks, and place quotations of 40 words or more in a block quotation. After the foreign-language quotation, place an English translation of the quotation in square brackets. However, there is no citation per se, for two reasons: because it is unethical to report personally identifying information about participants and because you do not need to cite your own research in the paper in which you are first reporting it.

Rather than cite the participant’s quotation, you should attribute the quotation to a pseudonym in the text; there is no reference list entry. Here are two examples:

Short quotation in translation:

Participant M said, “Estoy muy satisfecho con mi vida ahora que tengo hijos” [“I am very satisfied with my life now that I have children”].

Long quotation in translation:

Participant M continued,

Convertirse en madre me hizo sentir como un adulto, más que graduarme de la universidad, conseguir un trabajo, o vivir solo. Ahora entiendo mi propósito mejor. Estoy más centrado y motivado. Al mismo tiempo, entiendo que mi elección no es para todos. [Becoming a mother made me feel like an adult, even more than graduating from college, getting a job, or living by myself. Now I understand my purpose better. I am more focused and motivated. At the same time, I understand that my choice is not for everyone.]

Presenting Quotations Only in Translation

If you want to present a participant’s quotation only in translation, follow the method shown in the post on discussing research participant data: Present quotations of fewer than 40 words in quotation marks and quotations of 40 words or more in a block quotation, and attribute the quotation to a pseudonym.  

Although the quotation is technically a paraphrase because it is a translation, retain the quotation marks/block quotation format because the quotation represents speech. Then, indicate that the quotation is a translation. This can be accomplished in a number of ways. If your paper contains only a few translated participant quotations, note the translation in square brackets after each quotation. If your paper contains many translated participant quotations, state only once that you have translated all such quotations. You can explain this in the regular text or via a footnote. You can use any wording you like to indicate that you have done the translation yourself.

One translation noted in square brackets:

Participant B remarked, “My physical therapist helped me to regain my strength in not only my muscles but in my heart” [my translation from German].

All translations explained at once in the narrative: 

In this paper, I have translated all quotations from French into English. Participant A said, “My social anxiety made it difficult for me to function in the university environment.”

Other Questions?

If your quotation is from a published source rather than a research participant, please see our posts on that topic:

Do you have other foreign-language quotation questions? Leave a comment below.

six stick figure people say "hello" in various languages

May 14, 2018

The Updated APA Style JARS: Advancing Psychological Research

Sm-David Kofalt2 by David Kofalt

A (Very) Brief History of Journal Article Reporting Standards and APA Style

In one form or another, reporting standards have been a part of the APA Publication Manual. Although reporting standards have continued to develop with each edition of the Publication Manual, APA’s contribution to reporting standards were systematized and clarified in the December 2008 American Psychologist article "Reporting Standards for Research in Psychology: Why Do We Need Them? What Might They Be?" that was adapted as an appendix in the sixth edition of the Publication Manual.

Journal Article Reporting Standards Today: APA Style JARS

"Journal Article Reporting Standards for Quantitative Research in Psychology:
The APA Publications and Communications
Board Task Force Report"
Full-Text HTML | PDF
"Journal Article Reporting Standards for Qualitative Primary, Qualitative Meta-Analytic, and Mixed Methods Research in Psychology:
The APA Publications and Communications
Board Task Force Report"
Full-Text HTML | PDF

 

In January 2018, APA published an update to the reporting standards in two open-access articles in American Psychologist. Collectively referred to as APA Style Journal Article Reporting Standards, or APA Style JARS, the articles provide standards for quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research in psychology.

Whereas APA’s previous reporting standards focused solely on quantitative research, in response to the growth of qualitative research, the January 2018 update introduced standards for reporting qualitative and mixed methods research in psychology.

The update also involved a broad revision of the quantitative standards, which now include standards for clinical trials, replication studies, longitudinal studies, N-of-1 studies, and studies that use Bayesian statistics or structural equation modeling. In addition, the quantitative standards now separate hypotheses, analyses, and conclusions into primary, secondary, and exploratory groups.

APA Style JARS Tools

JARS icon
Last week APA launched a brand-new companion website for APA Style JARS that provides tools for students, authors, reviewers, and editors. Through this site, users can download the two open-access APA Style JARS articles as well as an editorial introducing the updated standards written by Anne E. Kazak, editor-in-chief of American Psychologist. Users can also find an APA Style JARS informational video, information on the history of reporting standards at the APA, frequently asked questions, and user-friendly printable checklists corresponding to each of the 15 APA Style JARS tables, adapted from the American Psychologist articles.

The APA Style JARS articles and companion site serve as tools to help students, researchers, and educators throughout the research process, enabling authors to more thoroughly and accurately communicate their research, and in turn, providing readers with information that is more accessible and easily understood.

 

April 02, 2018

How to Format Your CV or Resume

Hannah Greenbaumby Hannah Greenbaum

Our users often ask us how to format a curriculum vitae (CV) or resume in APA Style. The answer is simple: Do whatever you want! Seriously, APA does not provide guidelines, in the Publication Manual or elsewhere, for the style and layout of a CV or resume. However, if you choose to, or are instructed to, follow APA Style in your CV or resume, you can adapt components (e.g., references, guidelines for hyphenation, and other writing guidelines) of APA Style as presented in the Publication Manual. You probably wouldn’t want to use some APA Style formatting, like double-spacing because you want to showcase your experience and skills in a small space.

You might still wonder what to do even if there aren’t APA rules to follow. I understand this personally because questions flooded my mind when I began applying to graduate school . . . not the least of which were "How do I write a CV? Or resume? What is the difference?! 😤"

A CV (curriculum vitae) is Latin for "course of life" and is generally longer, academically focused, and more comprehensive than a resume. A resume is French for "summary" and is typically a one-page document showcasing more professionally oriented experiences and skills. (UC Davis Internship & Career Center, 2015)

Several years later, and near the completion of a doctoral degree in counseling psychology, I consistently add to my CV as I attain academic and professional experiences. I also have one-page resumes on hand and resumes tailored to specific kinds of employment.

two people working on a document togetherAnother tip is to look to the CVs of your advisors, mentors, and trusted academic colleagues for examples. Some people boldface their own name when it appears as part of a reference for previously published works or spell out all author names when their name would otherwise be omitted by an ellipsis. To indicate contributions to works when you are not listed as an author, you can create a section and explain what you did. These are suggestions; in the end you have latitude to organize these documents in a way that makes sense to you (just be sure to include relevant information). Some employers provide guidelines. Write with your audience in mind.

I have also found the following articles helpful. The more examples you expose yourself to, the better. Find a format that works for you and that fits the type of experience you are seeking.

Now go live your life and enjoy your experiences! But remember to document your accomplishments in your CV and resume!

Reference

UC Davis Internship and Career Center. (2015). Resume vs. curriculum vitae: What's the difference? Retrieved from https://icc.ucdavis.edu/materials/resume/resumecv.htm

March 14, 2018

How to Write Grade Numbers in APA Style

author pictureby Chelsea Lee

If you write about students in elementary, middle, or high school, then you’ve had to consider how to write grade numbers: eighth grade? 8th grade? Grade 8? Which is right? Should there be a hyphen?

In APA Style, the rules for presenting numbers apply to the presentation of grade numbers. This post will explain the most common formats.

Grade + a Numeral

When the word grade is followed by a numeral, always capitalize grade and use a numeral for the grade number.

Grade 1 Grade 3 Grade 5 Grade 9
Grade 10 Grade 11 Grade 12  

 

Ordinal Number + Grade

When writing a grade in its ordinal form, use words for Grades 1–9 and numerals for Grades 10, 11, and 12.

first grade third grade fifth grade

ninth grade

10th grade

11th grade

12th grade

 

However, if an ordinal number 10 or above starts a sentence, then use words.

Twelfth-grade students received diplomas at graduation.

Also, if you are writing four or more grades in the same sentence, then use numerals for all of them.

Students in 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th, and 10th grades

 

Hyphens With Grade Numbers

Use a hyphen with a grade number when the ordinal form is used as a compound adjective before a noun. Otherwise, do not use a hyphen with a grade number.

The first-grade students went on a field trip. The first graders…

If several ordinal grades are presented in a series of compound adjectives, then use hyphens with each.

The sixth-, seventh-, and eighth-grade students go to a middle school.

 

Grade Names Without Numbers

Lowercase nonnumerical words referring to grades or groups of grades (except for the in pre-K and K–12). Also note that compounds written with the word school do not use a hyphen (e.g., high school students), because these terms are written as open compounds per Merriam-Webster's Dictionary.

kindergarten 

pre-K

preschool

K–12

freshmen

sophomores

juniors

seniors

elementary school students middle school students

high school students

 
elementary schoolers middle schoolers

high schoolers    

 
university students undergraduates

graduates  

doctoral fellows

 

On the Value of Rephrasing

Sometimes these rules intersect in ways that may make a sentence look awkward; in the sentence below, it is correct to use a word for ninth and numerals for 10th and 11th, and although there is nothing wrong with this from an APA Style perspective, it may set off internal alarm bells for you.

Students in ninth, 10th, and 11th grades [this is correct]

Often the awkwardness can be resolved by rephrasing the sentence. Although this is not required, it may make you feel happier about your writing, and we are all for you feeling happy about your writing.

Students in Grades 9, 10, and 11 [this is also correct]

For more on numeral usage, see Sections 4.31–4.38 (pp. 111–114) of the sixth edition of the Publication Manual. If you have additional questions about how to write about grades in APA Style, leave a question in the comments section.

 

School bus

February 27, 2018

What’s in a Name? Authors With the Same Surname

Chelsea blog 2 by Chelsea Lee

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, right? Readers often ask us questions about how to handle repeated surnames in references. For example, how do you cite a work where some or all of the authors have the same last name? What if you want to cite separate works by people who have the same last name—how do you avoid making it seem like they are the same person? Read on to find out these answers.

Same Surname Within a Reference

Nothing special is required when a surname is repeated within a reference. Write the in-text citation and reference list entry normally.

Reference list entry: 

Sue, D., Sue, D. W., Sue, D., & Sue, S. (2015). Understanding abnormal behavior (11th ed.). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

 

In-text citation:

(Sue, Sue, Sue, & Sue, 2015)

Different First Authors Share a Surname But Have Different Initials

Now imagine a surname is repeated in different references. When the first authors of multiple references have the same surname but different initials, include initials for the first authors in the in-text citations. Never include initials for second or subsequent authors in in-text citations. The reference list entries are written normally.

In the example below, note that although all three examples have an author named Jackson, only D. Jackson and M. C. Jackson are cited with initials in the text because the other Jackson is not first author. 

Reference list entries:

Jackson, D. (2018). Aesthetics and the psychotherapist's office. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 74, 233–238. https://doi.org/10.1002/jclp.22576

Jackson, M. C., Counter, P., & Tree, J. J. (2017). Face working memory deficits in developmental prosopagnosia: Tests of encoding limits and updating processes. Neuropsychologia, 106, 60–70. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2017.09.003

Nelson, B. D., Jackson, F., Amir, N., & Hajcak, G. (2017). Attention bias modification reduces neural correlates of response monitoring. Biological Psychology, 129, 103–110. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsycho.2017.08.059

 

In-text citations:

(D. Jackson, 2018)

(M. C. Jackson, Counter, & Tree, 2017)

(Nelson, Jackson, Amir, & Hajcak, 2017)

Note: Include initials in the in-text citations only to help the reader tell apart different people. If the name of one person is presented inconsistently across works (e.g., sometimes a middle initial is present, sometimes it is missing), then reproduce the name as shown on the work in the reference list and write normal in-text citations without initials. See this post on inconsistent name formats for more.

Different First Authors Share a Surname and Initials

When the first authors of multiple references have the same surname and the same initials—but they are different people—then adding initials to the in-text citations won’t help readers tell the authors apart. So in this case (as addressed previously on the blog), include these authors’ full first names in the in-text citations. In the reference list entries, also include the full first names in square brackets after the initials. Never include bracketed names for second or subsequent authors in in-text citations or reference list entries.

Reference list entries:

Green, L. [Laura]. (2009). Morphology and literacy: Getting our heads in the game. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 40, 283–285. https://doi.org/10.1044/0161-1461(2009/08-0091)

Green, L. [Leonard], & Myerson, J. (2013). How many impulsivities? A discounting perspective. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 99, 3–13. https://doi.org/10.1002/jeab.1

 

In-text citations:

(Laura Green, 2009)

(Leonard Green & Myerson, 2013)

For more on this topic, see the Publication Manual sections 6.14 and 6.27. Got more questions? Leave a comment below.

 

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