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Citing Sources: Books - APA

This guide indicates the appropriate form for layout, in-text citations, and bibliography for MLA, APA, and Chicago formatted papers.

General Information for APA and books

Alphabetize your reference list by the first word of the citation (usually the author's last name).

Double space all of the citations on your reference page.

Indent the second & following lines of the citation 5-7 spaces.  

For 2-7 authors: Wingert, P., Smith, J., & Brown, P.

For more than 7 authors: List the first six authors, then put an ellipses (. . .) before the final author’s name.

Only capitalize the first word of the document title. If there is a colon in the title, capitalize the first word after the colon.

No period after URL for e-books. 

No retrieval date is needed for e-books, unless your professor wants you to include it.

Creating a Reference Entry for Book or eBook

In-text Citations with APA - One Author

If the author's name is in your text, you do not need to repeat it in the in-text citation.

Signal phrase, Author (Year), "quote" (p. page number).

One researcher, Carol Gilligan (2005), concluded that "women impose a distinctive construction on moral problems" (p. 105).

If the author's name is not in your text, you  must include it in the in-text citation.


Signal phrase, "quote" (Author, year, p. page number).


As a result, studies suggest that "women impose a distinctive construction on moral problems" (Gilligan, 2005, p. 105).

In-text Citation with APA - No Author but Editor

There are times when there is no author listed but an editor is provided or you want to cite a chapter/essay from an anthology.

If the author's name is missing but an editor is present, and you want to cite the entire book, the editor is placed in the author's section of the citation. 

Reference list:

Strachey, J. (Ed. & Trans.). (1953). The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud (Vol. 4). Retrieved from


(Strachey, 1953).

If an editor is present but you are using one chapter/essay of the anthology that has an author, cite using the author of the chapter/essay.

Reference list:

Author, A. A. (Year). Title of chapter. In B. B. Editor (Ed.), Title of book (pp. xxx–xxx). Location: Publisher.

Author, A. A. (Year). Title of chapter. In B. B. Editor (Ed.), Title of book [E-reader version, if applicable] (pp. xxx–xxx). Retrieved from http://xxxxx


(Author, 1953, p. 178).

In-text Citations with APA - Two Authors

Use last names only. Add an "&" before the second name.

Signal phrase, "quote" (Author, & Author, Year, p. page number).

According to a study, "The poor and minorities were victims" (Frieden & Sagalyn, 2005, p. 29).

In-text Citations with APA - Three to Five Authors

First time cited
Signal phrase, "quote" (Author, Author, & Author, Year, p. page number).

Our text discussed the "ethical dilemmas in public relations" (Wilcox, Ault, & Agee, 2005, p. 125). 

Subsequent times cited
Signal phrase, "quote" (Author et al., Year, p. page number).

As mentioned before, there may be "ethical dilemmas in public relations" (Wilcox et al., 2005, p. 125).

In-text Citations with APA - Six or More Authors

In either the signal phrase or parentheses, give only the first author’s last name, followed by et al.

Signal phrase, "quote" (Author et al., Year, p. page number).

Signal phrase with First Author et al. (Year) …

Recent research showed that … (Graham et al., 2010). 

According to a research study by Graham et al. (2010), …

In-text Citations with APA - No author

Use shortened version of title.

Signal phrase, "quote" ("Shortened Title", Year, p. page number). Note: Titles of articles in "Quotation Marks", titles of Books or Longer Works are italicized.

One article stated that, "A death row inmate may demand his execution for notoriety" ("Right", 2005, p. 135).

APA Checklist - Quick Guide for Printing

How to Create a Reference list Entry for Books using NoodleTools

Click Play then please click on the full screen icon in the bottom right of the screen.

The process of creating a citation for a book is the same for MLA, APA, or Chicago. NoodleTools will format it correctly based on the format you chose when you created your project.

Citation Tools


This LibGuide is based on the APA Citations LibGuide created by Montgomery College Libraries. The content and format are used with permission.

The APA Formatting Style Guide by OWL at  Purdue was also used with permission.