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Guidelines to APA Style: Support & tools

Libguide on citing sources in APA Style.

Official APA7 guidelines

Cover Art Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association

American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th edition).

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Official blog of the American Psychological Association.

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A reference manager is a web-based program that allows you to collect, store, organize and manage source citations (references).

Benefits of a reference manager:

  • References are stored online and can be imported without manual entry.
  • Attachments, e.g. the pdf file of an article, can be added to the references.
  • References can be shared with others.
  • Add source references directly into your article, report, etc. in APA style or any other desired style.  

Well-known reference programs are Endnote, Mendeley, and Zotero. Mendeley and Zotero are for free. For Endnote and RefWorks, your own educational institution usually has a paid license. Inquire within your own organization about the possibilities.

Various search engines (in databases or catalogues) automatically generate a source reference.
If not, you still have all the data needed to compile a reference by yourself.

  • Each catalog item has a small icon of a double quotation mark.
  • Choose 'APA 7th edition' at 'Select a citation style'.
  • You can now copy the citation.

Note: always check that the automatic generated citation is complete and follows the guidelines correctly (capitals, edition, etc.)!

Google Scholar

Each search result is presented with a bar with various options directly below it. 
Choose the quotation mark icon in the bar:

  • A screen appears with the bibliographic description of the article in 3 styles, including APA.
  • Always check the reference entry and add the DOI or retrieval date and URL.
  • You can also export the article to a reference manager to add to your document later.

Scribbr has a handy web application APA Citation Generator for creating and saving both citations and references.

  • Choose the right type of publication.
  • Look up a publication (title or DOI).
  • Scribbr automatically fills in all the data.
  • If Scribbr cannot find the publication fill in all data yourself.
  • Click on 'Generate source', choose 'Edit' to correct errors or adjust elements.

Take the quiz!

Think you know everything about APA Style? Take the quiz!
The information specialists of the HAN Study Centres have put together three quizzes about the APA guidelines: Basic, Advanced and Expert. Each quiz consists of multiple choice questions:

About this guide

This guide was made by Project APA7, a collaboration between several Dutch higher education institutions and part of SHB/UKB Information Literacy.


American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th edition).

Werkgroep APA. (2021). De APA-richtlijnen uitgelegd: Een praktische handleiding voor bronvermelding in het hoger onderwijs [The APA guidelines explained: A practical guide for citing sources in higher education] (3e herziene editie). SURF.


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