Students studying Psychology should use the American Psychology Association (APA) referencing style.

Guides to APA

Or, alternatively, print resources are also available:

Reference types

Books

An example of a book reference and citation would be:

In-text citation:

...(Cottrell, 2013).

You should include the author and year in brackets, linking multiple authors with &. If the author's name is already part of your sentence, then only include the year in brackets eg Cottrell (2013) discusses..., linking multiple authors together with 'and' when their names are part of your text.

Always include a page number in your citation if you have used a direct quotation eg "..." (Cottrell, 2013, p. 23).

Reference list:

Cottrell, S. (2013). The study skills handbook. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave.

You must include each part of the reference, in the correct order, and with the correct formatting.

Each reference should have a hanging indent ie the first line should touch the left margin, but the rest of the reference should be indented.

Journal articles

An example of a journal article reference and citation would be:

In-text citation:

(Loes, Salisbury & Pascarella, 2015) 

Reference list:

Loes, C. N., Salisbury, M. H. & Pascarella, E. T. (2015). Student perceptions of effective instruction and the development of critical thinking: A replication and extension. Higher Education, 69(5), 823-838. doi: 10.1007/s10734-014-9807-0

Only include the doi (digital object identifier) if one is available.

Each reference should have a hanging indent ie the first line should touch the left margin, but the rest of the reference should be indented.

Websites

An example of a website reference and citation would be:

In-text citation:

(Bowler, 2018)

If the webpage you're using doesn't have a named author, use the organisation name eg (BBC, 2018)

Reference list:

Bowler, T. (2018). Can listening to bees help save them - and us? Retrieved from: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-46131255 

FAQs

How many authors do I include in my citation and reference list?

Whether you're referencing a book or a journal article, you need to consider how many authors to include in your citation and reference list.

1 or 2 authors

First and all subsequent citations, name each author, eg:

(Gleason & Kalpidou, 2014) or Gleason and Kalpidou (2014)

Reference list, name each author, eg:

Gleason, T. R., & Kalpidou, M. (2014). Imaginary companions and young children's coping and competence. Social Development, 23(4), 820-839. doi:10.1111/sode.12078

3, 4, or 5 authors

First citation, name all authors, eg:

(Davis, Meins & Fernyhough, 2014) or Davis, Meins and Fernyhough (2014)

Subsequent citation, name first author followed by et al., eg:

(Davis et al., 2014) or Davis et al. (2014)

Reference list, name each author, eg:

Davis, P. E., Meins, E., & Fernyhough, C. (2014). Children with imaginary companions focus on mental characteristics when describing their real-life friends. Infant and Child Development, 23(6), 622-633. doi:10.1002/icd.1869

6 or 7 authors:

First and all subsequent citations, name first author followed by et al., eg:

(Morris et al., 2011) or Morris et al. (2011)

Reference list, name each author, eg:

Morris, A. S., Silk, J. S., Morris, M. D. S., Steinberg, L., Aucoin, K. J., & Keyes, A. W. (2011). The influence of Mother–Child emotion regulation strategies on children's expression of anger and sadness. Developmental Psychology, 47(1), 213-225. doi:10.1037/a0021021

8 or more authors

First and all subsequent citations, name first author followed by et al., eg:

(Eggum et al., 2012) or Eggum et al. (2012)

Reference list, name first 6 authors followed by ... followed by the last named author, eg:

Eggum, N. D., Eisenberg, N., Reiser, M., Spinrad, T. L., Valiente, C., Sallquist, J., . . . Liew, J. (2012). Relations over time among children's shyness, emotionality, and internalizing problems. Social Development, 21(1), 109-129. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9507.2011.00618.x

How do I cite a citation from somebody else's work?

For example: the book you have read is by Mustard 2017, but Mustard refers to a work by Grover 2015 that makes a point you would like to use. This is called secondary referencing.

  • Ideally, source the original work by Grover and reference that as you would anything else
  • Alternatively, reference it as a secondary reference, eg

In-text citation: (Grover, 2015, as cited in Mustard, 2017) or Grover (2015) (as cited in Mustard, 2017)

Reference list: Mustard, C. (2017). etc 

This way, your citation nods to the work that you want to use, but your reference list indicates the work you have actually read.

Secondary referencing is considered to be poor academic practice. Sometimes, however, it's just not possible to track down the original work, and the point you're trying to make is too important to miss it out. That's fine; just try to avoid too many secondary references.