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APA Style (Archived: 6th Edition)

General Rules


An in-text citation is a short citation in the text of your paper that directs the reader to the full reference at the end of your assignment.

When you quote from other sources in your paper, you can use a Direct Quote (take the author's words exactly) or Paraphrase (when you take the author's ideas and put them in your own words).


Direct quote example: "Canada is a multicultural country" (Author lastname, Year, p. #).

Paraphrase example: Canada is a multicultural country (Author lastname, Year).

Punctuation & In-text Citations

Citations are part of your sentence structure, and closing punctuation follows the citation.


When a quote appears in the middle of a sentence, follow the quote with the in-text citation, then complete your sentence immediately following the citation.

Blah blah blah blah, "this is a direct quote from a source in the middle of a sentence" (Author, Year, p. #) blah blah blah blah.

End of a Sentence

When a quote appears at the end of your sentence, close the quote with double quotation marks and follow immediately with the in-text citation. Follow the citation with the closing punctuation for the sentence.

Blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah blah "this is a direct quote from a source, note the period comes after the citation" (Author, Year, p. #).

Block Quotes

Quotations longer than 40 words are formatted as block quotations:

  • Start on a new line
  • Omit double quotation marks
  • Indent the entire quotation about half an inch from the left margin
  • Double space the entire quote
  • Place citation after the final punctuation mark in the quotation

Blah blah blah blah. Blah blah blah, blah blah blah:

This is a block quotation, longer than 40 words. Notice how there are no quotation marks and the entire quote is double-spaced and indented from the left margin. The citation comes after the closing punctuation. (Jones & Smith, 2010, p. 121)

Open License Statement

APA Guide, 6th Edition by Centennial College Libraries is licensed under a CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0 license unless otherwise stated.

Create In-text Citations

Credit: Humber Libraries.

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