Citing Sources: APA Editions

In 2009, the American Psychological Association published the 6th Edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, replacing the 5th Edition of the Publication Manual. During this time of transition from the 5th Edition to the 6th Edition, the Harper College Library will continue to provide assistance for the 5th Edition and its supplement. Please ask your instructor if you should follow the 6th Edition or the 5th Edition for your course.

So what are the changes?

The following is a brief overview of the major changes found in the 6th Edition APA Publication Manual. Areas affected by the changes are marked with red text.

Periodical Homepages

If an Electronic journal, magazine, and newspaper article does not have a DOI, then the citation should include the periodical homepage URL as retrieval info.

Citations should not include any Database information if retrieved from one unless the item is too difficult to find otherwise.

Old Edition Example

Norvilitus, J. M., Szablicki, P. B., & Wilson, S. D. (2003). Factors influencing levels of credit-card debt in college students. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 33(5), 935-947. Retrieved March 4, 2009, from Academic Search Premier database.

New Edition Example

Norvilitus, J. M., Szablicki, P. B., & Wilson, S. D. (2003). Factors influencing levels of credit-card debt in college students. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 33(5), 935-947. Retrieved from http://www.wiley.com/bw/journal.asp?ref=0021-9029

APA Manual p. 191-192

Tips:

To find the periodical homepage, try a basic Google search for the title of the journal, magazine, or newspaper. Be cautious when reviewing search results. You may come across old publisher websites, and you want to find the latest publisher's homepage.

If you are unable to locate the periodical homepage, then simply provide the database or website information where you found the cited material.

No Retrieval Dates

Published sources found online or electronically no longer need retrieval dates.

Retrieval dates are only provided if a source is likely to change, like a webpage or wiki entry.

Old Edition Example

Romano, A. (2006, April 24). Walking a new beat: surfing MySpace.com helps cops crack the case. Newsweek 147(17), 48. Retrieved March 4, 2009, from Academic OneFile.

New Edition Example

Romano, A. (2006, April 24). Walking a new beat: Surfing MySpace.com helps cops crack the case. Newsweek, 147(17), 48. Retrieved from http://www.newsweek.com/

APA Manual p. 191

Seven Authors Listed

Citations should list up to seven authors, not six.

Citations with more than seven authors should list the first six, use an ellipsis, and close with the last name on the list of authors.

Old Edition Example

Suchy, B., Austrup, F., Driesel, G., Eder, C., Kusiak, I., Uciechowski, P., et. al. (2000). Detection of mammaglobin expressing cells in blood of breast cancer patients. Cancer Letters, 158, 171-178. Retrieved August 30, 2009, from Science Direct database.

New Edition Example

Suchy, B., Austrup, F., Driesel, G., Eder, C., Kusiak, I., Uciechowski, P., … Giesing, M. (2000). Detection of mammaglobin expressing cells in blood of breast cancer patients. Cancer Letters, 158, 171-178. Retrieved from http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/506050/ description#description

APA Manual p. 184

Tip: For in-text citations with three or more authors, do use 'et al.' when shortening the citation. For example: "Suchy et al. (2000) studied..."

Using DOI for Print

APA is now placing a much stronger emphasis on the use of DOI (digital object identifier) numbers.

If a DOI number is available for a print document, it should be included in the citation.

Old Edition Example

Swallow, K.M., Zacks, J.M., & Abrams, R.A. (2009). Event boundaries in perception affect memory encoding and updating. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 138(2), 236-257.

New Edition Example

Swallow, K.M., Zacks, J.M., & Abrams, R.A. (2009). Event boundaries in perception affect memory encoding and updating. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 138(2), 236-257. doi:10.1037/a0015631

APA Manual p. 198