Answered By: Jennifer Harris
Last Updated: Apr 12, 2019     Views: 39850

In-text citations (also known as parenthetical citations) give brief details that reference the original source within the text of a document. Any source that is referenced in-text must also be listed in the reference list. See APA (6th ed.),  pp. 174-179. To create an in-text citation, use the author's last name followed by a comma and the publication year.

For example: 

(Michaelson, 2016)

Citing paraphrased information

The author's last name and the date can be included at the beginning, middle, or end of the paraphrased sentence. You also want to include page numbers to help the reader find the relevant text (see p. 171 of the APA Manual for mor information). For example: 

Michaelson (2016) examined the use of novels in business ethics education (pp. 594-598).

The argument of over if someone is right or someone is wrong Michaelson (2016) argued, is not the point of the exercise (p. 599).

The author uses novels in his MBA classes and he begins by holding a discussion about the urgent nature of business (Michaelson, 2016, p. 600).

The Purdue OWL page "In-Text Citations: Author/Authors" has more information on citing works with multiple authors in-text.

Citing a direct quote

List the author's last name, the publication date, and the page number in parentheses at the end. Alternatively, list the author's last name and publication date in the sentence and put the page number in parentheses at the end. For example:

The author uses novels to teach business ethics because "it involves, arguably, a belief that exposure to alternative narratives of capitalism can shape our understanding of its purpose and function" (Michaelson, 2016, p. 599).

According to Michaelson (2016), "novels cultivate appreciation for that which cannot simply be measured by a return-on-investment calculation. They elicit empathy for nonfinancial value, the very kind of value that is underemphasized by modern management education that has contributed to the deficit of professionalism and ethics that society faces" (p. 603).

More information:

For further help please contact the Wolak Learning Center at 603.645.9606 (On-Campus Students) and Online Writing Center at 866.721.1662 (Online Students) for assistance with in-text citations.

This information is intended to be a guideline, not expert advice. Please refer to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association or speak to your professor about the appropriate way to cite sources in APA style.


American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.

Michaelson, C. (2016). A novel approach to business ethics education: Exploring how to live and work in the 21st century. Academy Of Management Learning & Education, 15(3), 588-606. doi:10.5465/amle.2014.0129

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