top of page


How do we write a reference list in APA 7th edition? This is one of the many questions that teachers and students do have regarding the new APA citation style. In this resourceful article, we will take you through the basic rules that you should know as far as the reference lists / page in APA 7th edition is concerened.

Basic Rules of writing reference lists in APA 7th edition

1. There are two parts to referencing: the citations within the text of your paper and the reference list at the end of your paper.

2. The APA referencing style is an "author-date" style, so the citation in the text consists of the author(s) and the year of publication given wholly or partly in round brackets.

3. Use only the surname of the author(s) followed by a comma and the year of publication. Include page, chapter or section numbers if you need to be specific, for example if you are quoting, paraphrasing or summarising:

4. Each reference list often come at the end of the academic paper. That is ,for every intext citation included in your essay / paper, you must include a list of references in the references page to show full lists of sources where you got the information.

For example, let us say we include in our paper that: According to John & Agrey (2019) the lockdown rules imposed by governments amid the COVID19 pandemic has resulted into high unemployement rates.

The above sentense tells the reader who stated such words, and that if we contact the material where such information were retrieved ,we will get the same information. Note, it was just an example, on how intext citations are included in a paper.

5. Now that the reader has known all these, where will he /she get the document where we obtained such words? He or she will get the document from a list of references indicated at the last page of our essay / paper marked the "References".

6. Always remember that every references entry put in the APA reference page must have four components which include: the author, date, title, and source.

Each element answers a question:

  • author: Who is responsible for this work?

  • date: When was this work published?

  • title: What is this work called?

  • source: Where can I retrieve this work?

7. Punctuations matter a lot when it comes to writing references lists. Below are necesary punctuation rules that you should never forget when writing your references.

Be sure to place a period after each reference element.—that is, after the author, date, title, and source. However, do not put a period after a DOI or URL because it may interfere with link functionality. And if a title ends with a question mark, the question mark replaces the period.
Secondly, place punctuation marks (usually commas or parentheses) between parts of the same reference element. For example, in a reference for a journal article, use a comma between each author’s last name and initials and between different authors’ names, between the journal name and the volume number, and between the journal issue number and the page numbers.
Third, refrain from using a comma between the journal volume and issue numbers. Place the issue number in parentheses directly after the volume number instead.
Fourth, Italicize punctuation marks that appear within an italic reference element (e.g., a comma or colon within a book title). Do not italicize punctuation between reference elements (e.g., the period after an italic book title or the comma after an italic journal title).

8. The 7th APA edition do not require you to include the words "Retrieved from" before a URL.

9. Multiple authors Rules:

In text citations for three or more authors should include the name of the first author only, followed by et al.
Reference list entries for works by up to and including 20 authors should include all authors names.
For works by more than 20 authors, include the names of the first 19 authors followed by an ellipsis (...) and then the final author's name.

10. The list of references is double-spaced and listed alphabetically by first author's last name. Addtionally, for each reference, the first line is typed flush with the left margin, and any additional lines are indented as a group a few spaces to the right of the left margin (this is called a hanging indent).

Example of APA reference List page - 7th edition.

Now that we have looked into various basic rules of writing APA 7th edition reference lists entires. Let as have some example showing how a good APA reference list page should look like.

From the above example of an APA references list, you wil note that we have followed all the rules stated above. All our reference list entries are in alphabetical order, we have used punctuations correctly, the author's names are cited properly, and the references lists are indented 0.5. from the paper margin.

Now that that you have learnt a lot from our article, did you like it? Let us know in the comment section below. Preeminent Academic Writers the best essay writing service in the United States. Do you have an essay due?

Make an order on our website and a competent professor will write a customized essay for you, all done anonymously. Privacy guaranteed. Millions of students place their orders yearly, what are you waiting for?

3 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page