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Citation Styles Playbook

The purpose of this playbook is to help you cite the sources used in your academic research.


APA Citation Style for Books:
General notes
  • Authors' names are formatted as follows: Last Name, Initials.  Example: Smith, J.B.  
  • The rules for author name formatting apply to any source, not just books.
  • Book titles are formatted in sentence case and in italics.
  • The titles of book parts (chapter, preface, introduction, etc.) are formatted in sentence case.
  • If the source has no date, document it like this in the date field: (n.d.)
  • When the source has two to 20 authors, an ampersand (&) goes before the last author.
  • When listing page numbers, use p. for a single page (example: p. 32) and pp. for a page range (example: pp. 12-27)
  • For book editions other than the first, place the edition in parentheses after the title. Do not italicize the edition field.  Example:  Raising children (6th ed.)
  • Long URLs and DOIs can be shortened by using a URL shortener or a DOI shortener.
One author

Author Last Name, Initials. (Year). Book title. Publisher.

Goldsworthy, A. (2016). Pax Romana: War, peace, and conquest in the Roman world. Yale University Press.

Two to 20 authors

When there are two to 20 authors, all authors must be listed. An ampersand (&) precedes the name of the last author.

Ansari, A., & Klinenberg, E. (2015). Modern romance. Penguin Press.

Greig, A., Taylor, J., & MacKay, T. (2013). Doing research with children: A practical guide.  Sage.

More than 20 authors

List the names of the first 19 authors, then insert an ellipsis, and then the name of the last author.

Kalnay, E., Kanamitsu, M., Kistler, R., Collins, W., Deaven, D., Gandin, L., Iredell, M., Saha, S., White, G., Woollen, J., Zhu, Y., Chelliah, M., Ebisuzaki, W., Higgins, W., Janowiak, J., Mo, K.C., Ropelewski, C., Wang, J., Leetmaa, A., ... Joseph, D. (1996). The NCEP/NCAR 40-year reanalysis project. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 77(3), 437-471.

Note: This example is of a journal article, as books normally don't have this many authors.

Edited book

Editor Last Name, Initials. (Ed.). (Year). Book title. Publisher.

Shotton, M. A. (Ed.). (1959). Psychology: A study of science. McGraw-Hill.

Stevens, A. C., & Crosby, J. (Eds.). (1976). Principles of psychology. Greenleaf Press.

Book with no author or editor

Title of the book. (Year). Publisher.

Nursing: A concept-based approach to learning (4th ed., vol. 1). (2022). Pearson.

Merriam-Webster's collegiate dictionary (11th ed.). (2005). Merriam-Webster.

in an anthology or edited book

Author Last Name, Initials. (Year). Chapter/Section title. In Editor Initials Last Name (Ed.), Book title (page number[s] using p. or pp.). Publisher.

Leigh, J. A., & Brewster, A. E. (2008). Primary language acquisition. In J. Carruthers & K. McNeil (Eds.), Developmental psychology (pp. 312-337). Ivory Publications.

Ryder, W. & Miller, S. (2006). Introduction. In E.M. Harris (Ed.), Consequences of illiteracy (2nd ed., vol.1,  pp. 1-2). Essex Press.

Entry in an encyclopedia ​(print or online)

Author(s) Last Name(s), Initials. (Year). Title. In Editor Initials Last Name (Ed.), Encyclopedia title (ed., vol., page number[s] using p. or pp.). Publisher.

Laberge, M. (2015). Gastric bypass. In J.L. Longe (Ed.), The Gale encyclopedia of medicine (5th ed., vol. 4, pp. 2100-2105). Gale. 

Tobacco. (2009). In P. Korsmeyer & H. R. Kranzler (Eds.), Encyclopedia of drugs, alcohol & addictive behavior (3rd ed., vol. 4, pp. 95-130). Macmillan Reference USA. 

Wikipedia entry

Entry title. (Date). In Wikipedia. URL of archived version of the page.

List of oldest companies. (2019, January 13). In Wikipedia,

NOTE: Cite the archived version of a Wikipedia page so readers can retrieve the exact version you used. To access the archived version of a Wikipedia entry, click "View history."

Entry in an online dictionary, with group author

Group Author. (date or n.d.). Title of entry. In Title of Work. Retrieved date, from URL

Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Self-report. In dictionary. Retrieved July 19, 2019, from

American Psychological Association. (n.d.). Positive transference. In APA dictionary of psychology. Retrieved August 31, 2019, from

Note: if there is no group author, start with the title of the entry.

Certainty. (n.d.). In Retrieved April 20, 2019, from


Volume(s) in a multivolume work    

Author Last Name, Initials.(Date[s]). Book title (vol[s].). Publisher.

Gutkind, L. (Ed.). (2007). The best creative nonfiction (vol. 1). Creative Nonfiction Foundation.

Edition other than the first

The edition goes in parentheses after the title. Notice the edition is not italicized.

Kenney, L.W., Wilmore, J., & Costill, D. (2015). Physiology of sport and exercise (6th ed.). Human Kinetics.


E-book from a database

Author Last Name, Initials. (Year). Book title. Publisher.

Gillick, M. R. (2017). Old and sick in America: The journey through the health care system. The University of North Carolina Press.

Note: Ebooks from databases are cited like any other book. 

E-book not from a database

Author Last Name, Initials. (Year). Book title. Publisher. URL (can be shortened with a short-URL service)

Christian, B., & Griffiths, T. (2016). Algorithms to live by: The computer science of human decisions. Henry Holt and Co.

Mobile application software (app), with individual authors

Author Last Name, Initials. (Year). Title of work (edition) [Mobile app.]. Publisher. URL

Vallerand, A.H., & Sanoski, C.A. (2018). Davis's drug guide for nurses (16th ed.) [Mobile app]. Skyscape Medspresso, Inc.

Mobile application software (app), with group or corporate author

Group Name. (Year). Title of software or program (Version number) [Mobile app]. Publisher. URL

Epocrates (2019). Epocrates medical references (Version 19.11) [Mobile app]. App Store.