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Guide to Citations

A guide for everyone explaining basics of different types of Citation: What their purposes are, how to do them, and why they are important.

General Format

AuthorLastName, F. M., Author2LastName, F. M., & Author3LastName, F. M. (YYYY, Month). Title of work: Subtitle of work. Journal Name,

VolumeNumber(IssueNumber), pages. DOI/URL/Database.

Formatting Rules


  • Use hanging indentation for all your citations on your references page(s). This means that all lines must be indented after the first one. This will make it clear to your readers where each citation starts.
  • The list should be alphabetized by the author's last name.
  • For multiple articles listed by the same author, list them in chronological order.


  • Authors' last names come first. Do not include the first names of any authors, only their initials.
  • If there are more than six authors, list all six and then add ellipses (...) at the end.
  • Multiple authors are listed as they are presented on the paper (do not alphabetize)


  • Use the FULL TITLE even if it is long. 
  • Use the same punctuation and capitalization (if not the usual amount of capitalization) as the original title lists it.
  • Capitalize all major words in journal titles
  • Capitalize only the first letter of the first word of the title and subtitle for all other formats (books, book chapters, articles, webpages, etc)
  • Italicize titles of longer works (journals and books)
  • Don't italicize, underline, or put quotation marks around smaller titles (articles, webpages, chapters, essays within a collection, etc.)

Example Citation for Articles in Journals, Newspapers, Magazines, etc.

Tolinski, B. (2008). The Woodshed Holiday 2008: Heavier Than Hell. Guitar World 29(13) 26.

Example Citation for Book Reviews

Lamb, A. (1978, December). Omnivorous Pop. [Review of the book All the Years of American Popular Music, by D. Ewen]. 

The Musical Times 119(1630), 1049. doi:10.2307/960723.

  • Note that this resource is online, hence the use of a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) number, which you could put into Google to find where the article is located.

Example Citation for Letters to the Editor

Scorsese, M. (2019, November). I Said Marvel Movies Aren’t Cinema. Let Me Explain. [Letter to the editor]. New York


Example Citation for Books

Huber, D.M. (2018). Modern recording techniques. New York: Routledge. 

Example Citation for Scores

Evanescence. (2003). Fallen

Example Citation for Books with Editors instead of an Author

Kelsey, J. (Ed.). (2014). American woodworker's hand tool fundamentals: Advice, techniques & projects to build your skills. Cincinnati, OH: Popular

Woodworking Books.

Example Citation for an Essay within a Book

Whiteside, A. (1969). Practicing the Performance. In Prostakoff, J. & Rosoff S. (Eds.), Mastering the Chopin etudes and other

essays. New York: C. Scribner's Sons. 15-30. 

Example Citation for Multi-Volume Books

Vance, G. (2000). Progressive repertoire for the double bass (Vols. 1-2). New York: C. Fischer.

Example Citation for Books in Translation

Clemencic, R. (1973). Old Musical Instruments (D. Hermges, Trans.). London: Octopus Books. (Original work published in


Example Citation for Books in Editions After the First

Brabec, J. & Brabec, T. (2002) Music, money and success: The insider's guide to making money in the music industry (3rd

ed.). New York: Schirmer Trade Books.

Example Citation for a Website

Burgess, C. (2019) References. Retrieved from

Example Citation for Social Media

Musicians Institute Library. [@mi_library]. (2019, April 18). Don't miss out on our #AcousticThursdays today starting at 7pm!

[Tweet]. Retrieved from

Example Citation for eBooks

Simon, C. (2015). Boys in the trees: A memoir. Retrieved from

Example Citations for Physical Media

Movies or Videos

Holmes, P., Ali, K., & Lazin, L. (2003). Tupac: A resurrection [Motion Picture]. U.S.A.: Paramount Pictures. 


Felder, D., Henley D., & Frey, G. (1977). Hotel California [Recorded by the Eagles]. On Hotel California [CD]. New York: Asylum. 

Example Citation for Streaming Media

Sofialovestuna. (2017, January 4). Cat puts herself to sleep in tiny human bed [Video file].

Retrieved from

Example Citation for Personal Communication

Personal communications are not required references in your reference list. You can list it as an in-text citation (see the page for in-text citations for more information).


Purdue University Online Writing Lab. (n.d.). APA style introduction. Retrieved


Indian River State College Libraries. (2019, March 25). APA style guide: Social media. Retrieved