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Reading: Early Childhood Literacy Field Implementation

APA Tips and Tools

APA is the citation style used by the American Psychological Society (APA). It is used in multiple fields of study including, but not limited to, behavioral and social sciences, sociology, education, health science, criminal justice, etc.

In-Text Citations 

APA uses an author-date citation system for all in-text citations. These in-text citations can be done in parentheses at the end of the sentence or included within the narrative. Page numbers must also be included when directly quoting a source. A good rule to follow is if you use specific information that cannot be paraphrased (statistics, quotes, definitions), put in the page number. 

Basic In-Text Citation Styles Examples 

Author type 
Citation in parentheses 
Citation within the narrative  

1 author 

(Jones, 2020) 

Jones (2020) 

2 authors 

(Wayne & Grayson, 2021) 

Wayne and Grayson (2021) 

3 or more authors 

(Allen et al., 2023) 

Allen et al. (2023) 

Group author or organization with abbreviation 

First citation 


Second citation 

(American Library Association [ALA], 2020) 



(ALA, 2020) 

National Library Association (ALA, 2020) 



ALA (2020) 

Group author or organization without an abbreviation 

(Tarleton State University, 2020) 

Tarleton State University (2020) 

Direct quotation with page number 

(Bennett, 2020, p. 20) 

Bennett (2020) DIRECT QUOTATION (p. 20). 

Direct quotation that has no page number 

(Shaw, 2020, para. 2) 

Shaw (2020) DIRECT QUOTATION (para.2) 

There are four elements that make up a reference in the APA format: 

  • Author: Who created this work? 

  • Date: When was this work published? 

  • Title: What is the name of the work? 

  • Source: Where can one get this work from? 

Most reference types will use the following format, with the source element changing depending on the type of work referenced. 

Author. (Date). Title. Source. 

Things to remember about APA 

When writing the title of articles, books, chapters, reports, and webpages, you only capitalize proper nouns, the first word, and any word after a dash or colon. However, for the title of an academic journal, you must capitalize all major words.  


Lastname, F.M. (Year of publication). Title of work. Publisher name. DOI (if available) 

Brooks, M. (2011). World War Z. Random House. 

Article in a Journal or Periodical 

Author, A.A., & Lastname, F. M. (Year) Title of article. Title of Periodical, volume number(issue number), pages. DOI (if available) or URL (if found online with no DOI assigned). 

Bradley, L., Noble, N., & Hendricks, B. (2021). Mastering the new APA publication manual: Teaching techniques. The Family Journal, 29(1), 4-9. 


Lastname, F. M. (Year, Month date). Title of page. Site name. URL 

Lovelace Jr., B. (2022, October 26). Why isn’t there an RSV vaccine for kids? NBC News. 

  • Official blog of the APA with examples and more-in depth information  

  • APA Citation Manual 

  • Can be found at both the Circulation and Reference Desks 

  • Excellent online resource that helps create citations, cover letters, formatting, and general writing advice. 

  • A database on the Tarleton Library website that has APA guidelines, sample papers and figures, as well as interactive tools to help you understand APA. 

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