Skip to Main Content

Citations: APA Style (7th ed.)

How to create a document and cite using the most recent edition of APA.

Elements of a Web Citation

Author Date Article/Page Title Website Name URL

Author, A. A.

Name of Group.


(2018, October 31).


Title of the article.

Title of the digital-only article.

Name of Periodical.

Name of Site.



View the other tabs of this box to learn more about each part of the citation, or see the examples below.

In-Text Citations (When You Don't Have Page Numbers)

  • Give a section or header name, e.g. (Gecht-Silver & Duncombe, 2015, Osteoarthritis section). If the headings are long, you can abbreviate/shorten.
  • Count the paragraphs, e.g. (Chamberlin, 2014, para. 1).
  • Name section and paragraph number, e.g. (De Angelis, 2018, Musical Forays section, para. 4).

The author is the person or organization taking credit for the information. If you are not sure who is taking responsibility for the information, look for an About Us link or who is copyrighting the material.

In your citation, you need to include the date the information was written or modified. If the website has no date associated with it, your citation will reflect this by an (n.d.) where the date should be.

What to Look For:

  1. A byline date is sometimes used near the top of the webpage: May 1, 2004
  2. A date of last update may be found at the top or bottom of the page and looks something like: Updated: 8:43 a.m. MT May 10, 2009.
  3. If all you can find is the copyright date for the page, chances are this is a generic footer used across the website. Use (n.d.) in place of a date.

Look for what's actually written on the page itself (probably in the upper left corner) rather than in the address bar for the website's name. Every website has to be or or; that doesn't mean the website organizers consider the domain ending (.com, .net, etc) to be part of the website's official name.

To get an idea of who the publisher is, look towards the very bottom of the page for the copyright notice or for an About page.

Why are there 2 contradictory models for this?

APA 7 makes a distinction between the digital counterpart of a traditional medium, like The New York Times, and a purely digital source, like BBCNews or CNN.

  • Do not add a period to the end of the URL in the citation.
  • URLs should be hyperlinked.
  • Big, long, ugly URL? You may use a URL shortener like for it.
  • Do not use "retrieved from" or a retrieval date unless the source is likely to change invisibly, and you cannot link to a specific version of the page.
    • Retrieved December 29, 2019, from https://xxxx

Basic Examples, with Authors

In APA 7th edition, articles published in digital news sources (e.g., BBC News, Bloomberg, CNN, HuffPost, MSNBC, Reuters, Salon, Vox) will have the title of the article italicized but not the name of the source.
Sources that have both a print and a digital presence (e.g., The Washington Post or New York Times), will italicize the name of the source but not the title of the article.

Available Online-Only

Beaven, B. (2020, January 20). The modern phenomenon of the weekend. BBC News.

Parenthetical citation: (Beaven, 2020, Business Opportunity section).


Bologna, C. (2018, June 27). What happens to your mind and body when you feel homesick? HuffPost.

Parenthetical citation: (Bologna, 2018, How to Treat section).

Available both Web and Print

Herrera, T. (2020, October 23). Don’t work on your party laptop or party on your work laptop. The New York Times.

Parenthetical citation: (Herrera, 2020, para. 3).


McGonigal, K. (2020, January 21). Here's how exercise reduces anxiety and makes you feel more connected. The Washington Post

Parenthetical citation: (McGonigal, 2020).

Articles With No Author

Two years on, the Kuiper Belt is in sight. (2017, September 16). The Economist.

Parenthetical citation: ("Two Years," 2017).


Heart attack symptoms and warning signs. (2009). HealthCentral Network.

Parenthetical citation: (Heart Attack, 2009).

Why do these two examples seem to contradict each other in formatting? Refer to the explanation about article vs site titles.

Hang on, why are there quote marks and capital letters in the parenthetical citations?! Because that's just how APA rolls, unfortunately. (7th ed. manual, 8.14)

Article without a Date

Normally, you don't include an access date in APA except when a source doesn't have a publication date and could be revised "invisibly" (and you can't link to a specific page history).

Normal, Most Common Version

Implicit bias. (n.d.). Perception Institute.

Parenthetical citation: (Implicit Bias, n.d.)

Special - If Your Access Date is Needed

E.g. if a page isn't dated but the information may be updated periodically.

How to report misinformation online. (n.d.). World Health Organization. Retrieved October 13, 2020, from

Parenthetical citation: (How to Report, n.d.)


World Health Organization. (n.d.). How to report misinformation online. Retrieved October 13, 2020, from

Parenthetical citation: (World Health Organization, n.d.)

Special - Link to a Specific Page Version

American gothic. (2020, October 13). Wikipedia.

Online Articles with a Group Author

American Heart Association. (2015, January 12). Good vs bad cholesterol

Parenthetical citation: (American Heart Association, 2015).

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. (2018). The kidneys and how they work. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health.

Parenthetical citation: (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases [NIDDK], 2018).
Subsequent parenthetical citations: (NIDDK, 2018). Read more on In-text citations for Group/Association/Corporate Author 
Narrative citation: The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (2018) explains...

Blog Post

A blog post will basically be like a regular web article citation, though you might not have a person's real name to use.


Be very cautious if you're referencing a blog or comment in your paper. These aren't generally the best sources to use in terms of authority.

Ruiz, V. (2007, August 8). Wearing your anatomy on your skin: The anatomy tattoo gallery. Street anatomy: Medicine + art + design.

If you're referring to a comment on a blog post:

c4nn1b4l. (2009, August 9). Must have one [Comment on article "Wearing your anatomy on your skin: The anatomy tattoo gallery"] Street anatomy: Medicine + art +design

Images Online

McCurry, S. (1985). Afghan girl [Photograph]. National Geographic.

Parenthetical citation: (McCurry, 1985).

Sōtatsu, T. (1628). Waves at Matsushima [Painting]. The Smithsonian: Freer and Sackler Galleries, Washington, D.C., United States.

Parenthetical citation: (Sōtatsu, 1628).

Online Lecture Notes & Presentation Slides

Housand, B. (2016). Game on! Integrating games and simulations in the classroom [PowerPoint slides]. SlideShare.

Parenthetical citation: (Housand, 2016, slide 2).

Smith, J. (2019, September 5). Week 2: Time management [PowerPoint slides]. Lone Star College-Online D2L.

Parenthetical citation: (Smith, 2019). (Smith, 2019, slide 7).

An Entire Website

If you are mentioning a website in your paper and not indicating a specific idea, fact or document, it is acceptable to simply include the URL of the website in parentheses within your writing.  For example:

The MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia allows users to browse for topics and find information on a variety of health topics and medical procedures (

However, if you are referring to a specific piece of information or directly quoting information on the website, you will need to create both a text and reference citation for that material. If you're using multiple pages/articles from the same website, each one counts as its own source.

Dictionaries & Encyclopedias

Keep in mind, there likely isn't a good reason to use a dictionary definition or encyclopedia-level research material in your work. If you're not sure it's a good idea, consult a librarian or the Writing Lab coaches.

  • Definitions: Include the retrieval date, because definitions can be updated over time to reflect current usage, but the entries themselves are not dated or archived.

Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Culture. In dictionary. Retrieved September 9, 2019, from

Parenthetical citation: (Merriam-Webster, n.d.); (Merriam-Webster, n.d., Definition 1a)