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APA Citation Basics

Types of In-Text Citations

Quotation vs. Paraphrase

A direct quotation requires a page number or, if there are no pages numbers, a paragraph number. End the quote with a comma and quote marks, enter the citation, and then close the sentence with a period. 

Quotation, page number:
"Here is a quote," (Author, 2018, p. 23).

Quotation, paragraph number:
"Here is a quote," (Author, 2018, para. 4).

A paraphrase is when you express an idea from another source in your own words. The in-text citation for a paraphrase does not require page or paragraph numbers, and comes at the end of the sentence after the final word but before the period. 

Paraphrase, one author:

This is a paraphrase, (Author, 2018).

Paraphrase, two authors:

This is a paraphrase, (Author1 & Author2, 2018). 


Parenthetical vs. Narrative


You may, if you wish, identify your author(s) in the sentence before the citation at the end. If you do this you will only need the year--and page number, if necessary--in your in-text citation. This is called a narrative citation. A parenthetical citation does not name the author in the sentence.

Parenthetical Citation:
"Here is a quote," (Author, 2018).

Narrative citation
Author said, "Here is a quote," (2018).

Citing works with more than one author/editor:


Works with two authors
(Author1 & Author2, 2018).

Works with three, four, or five authors
(Author1, Author2, & Author3, 2018) the first time you cite that work. Every time you cite that work after that, cite as (Author1 et al., 2018). 


Works with six or more authors 
(Author1 et al., 2018) 

In-text citation examples

Type of source Parenthetical citation with single author/editor/organization
Website with an author (Author, 2018)
Website with no author (Title of the web page, 2018)
Website with no date (Author, n.d.)
Website with group or organization as author (Name of organization, 2018)
YouTube video (or other streaming video) (VideoCreator, 2018)
Article (journal, magazine, newspaper) (Author, 2018)
Authored book (Author, 2018)
Edited book (Editor, 2018)
Report (Agency/Organization Name, 2018)