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APA 6th ed. Style Guide: Scholarly Journal Articles

Essential Elements

Citations for scholarly articles should include the following:

1. Name of Author(s)

2. Year of Publication

3. Full Title of Article

4. Title of Journal (italicized)

5. Volume Number of Journal

6. Page Numbers of Article

General Format Guidelines for Scholarly Articles

What is a DOI (digital object identifier)??

  • the DOI system provides persistent identification for managing digital content.
  • if a DOI is available, it is used in place of a URL.  
  • DOI numbers can often be found on the first page of an online source, or with the article's bibliographic information on the item record page.
  • DOIs are now displayed as permanent URLs:

For more information, see "The DOI System" (p. 5) in APA Style Guide to Electronic References.

Sample Citations - Scholarly Articles

Journal Article with DOI (Digital Object Identifier):

All of the following are currently considered correct DOI display guidelines:

  • doi:10.1037/arc0000014

If you consulted the article in print, you do not need to include a DOI or URL. 


Journal Article without a DOI (when DOI is not available):

If no DOI is assigned to the online content, include the URL for the journal home page.

Use this format: Retrieved from http://xxxx 


No retrieval date is needed because the journal article content will not change over time.


Journal Article With Seven or More Authors

When a reference has 1-7 authors, spell out all authors' names in the reference list citation. If a source has 8 or more authors, list the first six, insert an ellipses, and then provide the name of the final author.

Example (article with 8 or more authors):

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