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APA Citation Style: Websites

This guide provides information on the 6th edition of the APA citation style as used at Southern Alberta Institute of Technology

Introduction

Because there are many different ways that online content can be formatted (webpage, online document, statement, etc.), citing that information can be more confusing. The first step is to try to identify the source (online magazine article? blog post? government white paper? PDF report? general webpage?).  If you can identify the source as one of the formats listed in the previous sections ( online journal, magazine, newspaper, or book ) use that specific citation format. If the source looks to be a general webpage or online government report, follow the examples below.

Website

According to the APA Style blog, you should italicize the title of the website or webpage if the work on the page stands alone, i.e., the content makes sense on its own without needing context from another webpage. If the webpage does not make sense on its own, it is part of a greater whole and the title should not be italicized.

 

Format for Stand-alone Website Content

In-Text Citation:
(Author Name, Year)

References:

Personal or Corporate Author. (creation date). Title of website. Retrieved from URL.

Examples

In-Text Citation:
(Canadian Red Cross, 2017)

Reference:

Canadian Red Cross. (2017). Recovery continues in Fort McMurray as Red Cross releases Alberta fires one year report. Retrieved from http://www.redcross.ca/about-us/red-cross-stories/2017/recovery-continues-in-fort-mcmurray-as-red-cross-releases-alberta-fires-one-year-report

 

In-Text Citation:
(Frieman, 2016)

Reference:

Frieman, R. (2016, March 27). How to be less of a jerk in Facebook arguments. Retrieved from http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/relationships/etiquette-manners/how-to-be-less-of-a-jerk-in-facebook-arguments

 

Format for Webpage that is Part of Larger Work

In-Text Citation:
(Author Name, Year)

References:

Personal or Corporate Author. (creation date). Title of webpage. Retrieved from URL.

Examples

In-Text Citation:
(Insurance Bureau of Canada, n.d.)

Reference:

Insurance Bureau of Canada. (n.d.). Liquor liability. Retrieved from http://www.ibc.ca/ab/home/risk-management/liability/social-host-(liquor-liability)


Tips:

  • When citing sources that you find on the Internet you only need to include a retrieval date if the information you viewed is likely to change over time. If you reference an article from a wiki, for example, you would want to include a retrieval date because such information could be subject to many updates over time.
  • Remember that governments, associations, companies, and organizations can also function as the author or editor of a source.
  • If there is no author, begin the entry with the title of the work, including the appropriate capitalization and italics formatting.
  • If a publication or creation date cannot be found on a website, write n.d. in parentheses, followed by a period. Do not use copyright date or "date modified" as these may not reflect the date the information was created.
  • If citing a non-typical source, add the format in brackets immediately after the title. Examples include [Abstract], [Audio podcast], [Data file], [Brochure], [Motion picture], [Blog post], [Computer software], and [Video webcast].

How to Cite Multiple Entries from Same Website

According to the APA Styleblog, "if you use information from multiple pages on a website, create a separate reference list entry for each page, with in-text citations that correspond to the appropriate reference list entry."

To differentiate these entries on the references list, add a letter after the date (2017-a) or n.d. (n.d.-a) after the entries have been placed in alphabetical order.

Examples:
In-text:
Smartland Hotel pricing decreased last year (Smartland, n.d.-c) even as room bookings increased (Smartland, n.d.-a).

Reference List:
Smartland. (n.d.-a). Booking rates. Retrieved from http://www.smartlandhotel.com/bookingrates
Smartland. (n.d.-b). Festivals, holidays, and concerts. Retrieved from http://www.smartlandhotel.com/festivals
Smartland. (n.d.-c). Room rates. Retrieved from http://www.smartlandhotel.com/roomrates

Online Government Reports

General Format

In-Text Citation (Quotation):
(Government Author, Year, page or paragraph number [if available])

References:

Government Name. Name of Government Agency. (Year). Title of document: Subtitle (Report No. xxx [if available]). Retrieved from URL of specific document

Example

In-Text Citation (Quotation):
(Environment Canada, 2004, p. 15)

References:

Environment Canada. Canadian Wildlife Service. (2004). The 1995 peregrine falcon survey in Canada. (Occasional Paper no. 110). Retrieved from http://www.cws-scf.ec.gc.ca/publications/AbstractTemplate.cfm?lang=e&id=1067


Tips:

  • If no person is named as an author, use the government agency, department, or branch as the author. Give the name of the group author exactly as it appears on the title page. If the branch or agency is not well known, include its higher department first.
  • If there is a series or report number, include it after the title.

Social Media Posts

The APA Style Blog has expanded on the APA manual to explain how to cite blogs, tweets, and Facebook posts.  Detailed information and examples are available on this blog post.

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