Skip to main content


APA Style Guide: Journal Article

American Psychological Association rules for formatting papers, in-text citations, and end references. Examples based on the sixth edition of the Publication Manual from the APA. By Alexis Carlson

Journal Article

Material Type           In-text Citation              Reference                                                        
    A Digital Object Identifier (DOI) is a way to keep track of content in a digital environment. Many publishers are assigning a DOI to each article in an issue. The DOI is unique and can be used by the reader to locate more citation information about the article. When a DOI is assigned, use it in place of other locating material (URL or database name).
Article from a print journal (no DOI) (Marshall & Clark, 2010).

Marshall, M. & Clark, A. M. (2010). Is clarity essential to good teaching? Teaching Philosophy, 33(3), 271-289.

Notice that periodical titles are capitalized like the standard title capitalization where all major words in the title are capitalized, Title of Periodical.

Article from a print journal (with DOI) (Chaffee & Weston, 2010). Chaffee, B. W. & Weston, S. J. (2010). Association between chronic periodontal disease and obesity: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Periodontology, 81(12), 1708-1724. doi: 10.1902/jop.2010.100321
Article from a journal in a database (no DOI)

(Badke, 2009).


Badke, W. (2009). How we failed the net generation. Online, 33(4), 47-49.

Article from database or Internet (with DOI)

1st citation
(Whitlock, Eells, Cummings, & Purington, 2009).

Subsequent citations
(Whitlock et al., 2009).

Whitlock, J., Eells, G., Cummings, N., & Purington, A. (2009). Nonsuicidal self-injury in college populations: Mental health provider assessment of prevalence and need. Journal of College Student Psychotherapy, 23(3), 172-183. doi: 10.1080/87568220902794366


Article from the Internet (available to anyone, no DOI assigned)

1st citation
(Negi, Bender, Furman, Fowler, & Prickett, 2010).

Subsequent citations
(Negi et al., 2010).

Negi, N. J., Bender, K. A., Furman, R., Fowler, D. N., & Prickett, J. C. (2010). Enhancing self-awareness: A practical strategy to train culturally responsive social work students. Advances in Social Work, 11(2), 223-234. Retrieved from


Elements of a Journal Citation

Not sure what each element of a citation means? Here is a step-by-step guide on understanding a citation, and creating your own!

The DOI System