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APA Citation Style Guide

Creating citations in APA format

Encyclopedias

Formatting Encyclopedias on Your References Page

Encyclopedias: If multiple editions of the encyclopedia have been published for years, you do not need to include all of the publication information. Include the edition number, publication year, and format (Print or Web). If there are multiple volumes, include the specific volume number that was used.

Other formatting requirements:

  • Alphabetize your reference list by the first word of the citation (usually the author's last name).
  • Your entire paper, including your References page, should be double-spaced.
  • Indent the second & following lines of the citation 5-7 spaces.  
  • Multiple authors:
    • For 2-7 authors, your list will look like this: Wingert, P., Smith, J., & Brown, P.
    • More than 7 authors: provide the first six authors, an ellipsis, and the final author. For example: Wingert, P., Smith, J., Brown, P., Harris, F., Johnson, A., Thompson, R.,...Lovett, M.
  • Only capitalize the first word of the document title. If there is a colon in the title, capitalize the first word after the colon.
  • If there is no date, use (n.d.).
  • Do not include a period after the DOI or URL.
  • No retrieval date is needed.

For additional information, see the Purdue OWL Guide pertaining to this topic.

Specialty encyclopedias, or encyclopedias that cover a specific subject, frequently list the author of each article. Authors of articles in general encyclopedias, or encyclopedias that cover all subject areas (such as the Encyclopædia Britannica), are not always listed.

There are few situations in which you would list an entire encyclopedia in your references; you will need to list the individual article(s) that you consulted.

The page range will have p. (for one page) or pp. (for multiple pages) in front of it.

Encyclopedia Entry with Author

Last Name, First Initial(s). (Year). Title of encyclopedia entry. In editor's first initial(s)

       last name if available (Ed.), Title of Encyclopedia. (Vol. number, Pages). City,

       State: Publisher.

Sucher, J. (1996). Charge, electronic. In J. S. Rigden (Ed.), Macmillan Encyclopedia of

       Physics. (Vol. 1, pp. 191-193). New York, NY: Macmillan Reference USA.

Encyclopedia Entry with No Author

Title of encyclopedia entry. (Year). In editor's first initial(s) last name if available (Ed.), 

       Title of Encyclopedia. (Vol. number, Pages). City, State: Publisher.

Information theory. (2007). In The New Encyclopædia Britannica. (Vol. 21, pp.

       631-637). Chicago, IL: Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.

Specialty encyclopedias, or encyclopedias that cover a specific subject, frequently list the author of each article. Authors of articles in general encyclopedias, or encyclopedias that cover all subject areas (such as the Encyclopædia Britannica), are not always listed.

There are few situations in which you would list an entire encyclopedia in your references; you will need to list the individual article(s) that you consulted.

From a Database - Format

Last Name, First Initial(s). (Year). Title of encylopedia entry. In Title of Encyclopedia.

       City, State:Publisher. Retrieved from URL of entry

Example With Author

Hooker, R. (2004). Early japanese visual arts. In Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from  http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9399848

Example with Editor

Hooker, R. (Ed.). (2004). Early japanese visual arts. In Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from  http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9399848

From the Internet - Format

Last Name, First Initial(s). (Year). Title or encyclopedia entry. In Encyclopedia Title.

       Retrieved from URL.

Example With Author

Smith, J. (2004). Western painting. In Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from http://www.britannica.com.

Example with Editor

Smith, J. (2004). Western painting. In B.J. Brown (Ed.), Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from http://www.britannica.com.

Example with No Author or Editor

Heuristic. (1980). In Merriam-Webster's online dictionary (11th ed.). Retrieved from

       http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/heuristic

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Online Encyclopedia from a Database

Format

Last Name, First Initial(s). (Year). Title of encylopedia entry. In Title of Encyclopedia.

       City, State:Publisher. Retrieved from URL of entry

Example With Author

Hooker, R. (2004). Early japanese visual arts. In Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from  http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9399848

Example with Editor

Hooker, R. (Ed.). (2004). Early japanese visual arts. In Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from  http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9399848

Online Encyclopedia from the Internet

Format

Last Name, First Initial(s). (Year). Title or encyclopedia entry. In Encyclopedia Title.

       Retrieved from URL.

Example With Author

Smith, J. (2004). Western painting. In Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from http://www.britannica.com.

Example with Editor

Smith, J. (2004). Western painting. In B.J. Brown (Ed.), Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

       Retrieved from http://www.britannica.com.

Example with No Author or Editor

Heuristic. (1980). In Merriam-Webster's online dictionary (11th ed.). Retrieved from

       http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/heuristic

      

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