Criminal Justice Writing Tips: Formatting In-Text Citations in APA Style

Keep-calm-and-use-APA-style2The reasons that in-text citations are used is to give credit to the ideas or words of another that influenced your thinking and work in your paper. The in-text citation allows the writer to document the source within the text of the paper and clearly points to the source on the reference page. If you use an in-text citation in your work make sure that this source is included within your reference list at the end of the paper.

More detailed information on formatting in-text citations can be found in the APA Style Publication Manual (6th ed.) on pages 169-179.

APA In-Text Citations

58b8fb61be81378e8972bbfa23ea56f5One Author

Examples:

Bond (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond, 2016).

Two Authors

Bond and Smith (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond & Smith, 2016).

Three Authors

Bond, Smith, and Jones (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond, Smith, & Jones, 2016).

When you have three authors the second and subsequent use of the reference in the same paper is formatted like this example.

Bond et al. (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond et al., 2016).

Four Authors62770752

Bond, Smith, Jones, and Williams (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond, Smith, Jones, & Williams, 2016).

When you have four authors the second and subsequent use of the reference in the same paper is formatted like this example.

Bond et al. (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond et al., 2016).

Five Authors228b096ce1489e75e4e2231aa391dfe1e1fedafeabfa7646732a9ba47a971f47

Bond, Smith, Jones, Williams, and Bell (2016) stated……

Parenthetical format (Bond, Smith, Jones, Williams, & Bell, 2016).

When you have five authors the second and subsequent use of the reference in the same paper is formatted like this example.

Bond et al. (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond et al., 2016).

Six or More Authors

The first use and subsequent use of the reference with six or more authors.

Bond et al. (2016) stated….

Parenthetical format (Bond et al., 2016).

50222968Learning the basics of APA Style formatting takes practices and using examples of properly formatted references so that the student can mirror the examples is one of the best way to learn to format in APA Style. Don’t guess, take the time to use the resources provided and keep a copy of the APA Style Manual handed when you edit your work. Many times the difference between a good paper and an excellent paper comes down to paying attention to detail and allowing yourself time to proof and edit your work before submitting for a grade.

Striving to hand in the best quality paper that represent your efforts is the goal. Giving credit to the sources that inspired your thinking on the topic and honors the researchers/scholars that came before us. Citing the main source is required to avoid issues with plagiarism.

When in doubt, cite the source. Remember for every in-text citation you must include this source in your references list. Double check that each in-text citations has a reference and that every reference has an in-text citation.

The best sources for academic writing will always be peer-reviewed journal articles. Use current sources that are less than five years from publishing so your work is using the latest scholarly literature.


About the Author

Mark Bond

Mark Bond has worked in law enforcement and has been a firearms instructor for more than 33 years. His law enforcement experience includes the military, local, state and federal levels as a police officer and criminal investigator. Mark obtained a BS and MS in criminal justice, and M.Ed in educational leadership with Summa Cum Laude honors. As a lifelong learner, he is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in education (EdD) with a concentration in college teaching and learning. Mark is currently an assistant professor of criminal justice at a university and adjunct professor of administration of justice studies at a community college.

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