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EDUC 4550: Collaboration: Co-Teaching, Building Community, & Working with Families: APA Citations

Using APA citation format for information you are accessing from government websites.

APA Citation Resources

Do you need help with citations?  Here are some resources you can use:

Diana Hacker's Research & Documentation Online, 5th ed. (an APA Citation Guide) - Research & Documentation Online, 5th ed., provides a good resource for formating and citing papers using the 6th edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (2010). It offers examples for doing end of text and in text citations as well as providing a sample paper.

What's new with the APA Style - This PDF gives an overview of some of the changes made in the APA style with the new 6th edition.

APA Documentation from University of Wisconsin-Madison - Provides a quick resource for citing references in papers using the 6th edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (2010).

APA Style Manual - This book can be found at the library circulation desk.  It must be used in the library.  It can help you with more obscure items.  We currently have the 5th edition up and the new edition on order.

Ask a Librarian: or 978-665-3223 or our Chat box located throughout the library's website.

How do you cite something from a website in your paper?

From Research & Documentation Online, 5th ed., by Diana Hacker:


In-Text Citations


 Organization as author:

7. If the author is a government agency or another organization, name the organization in the signal phrase or in the parenthetical citation the first time you cite the source.

Obesity puts children at risk for a number of medical complications, including type 2 diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnea, and orthopedic problems (Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 2004, p. 1).

If the organization has a familiar abbreviation, you may include it in brackets the first time you cite the source and use the abbreviation alone in later citations.


(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], 2009)


(CDC, 2009)


Electronic source, such as a website: 

12. When possible, cite electronic sources, including online sources, as you would any other source, giving the author and the year.

Atkinson (2001) found that children who spent at least four hours a day watching TV were less likely to engage in adequate physical activity during the week.

Electronic sources sometimes lack authors’ names, dates, or page numbers.

Unknown author

If no author is named, mention the title of the source in the signal phrase or give the first word or two of the title in the parentheses (see also item 6). (If an organization serves as the author, see item 7.)

The body’s basal metabolic rate, or BMR, is a measure of its at-rest energy requirement (“Exercise,” 2003).

Unknown date

When the date is unknown, use the abbreviation “n.d.” (for “no date”).

Attempts to establish a definitive link between television programming and children’s eating habits have been problematic (Magnus, n.d.).

No page numbers

APA ordinarily requires page numbers for quotations, and it recommends them for summaries and paraphrases from long sources. When an electronic source lacks stable numbered pages, your citation should include information that will help readers locate the particular passage being cited.

If the source has numbered paragraphs, use the paragraph number preceded by the abbreviation “para.”: (Hall, 2008, para. 5). If the source contains headings, cite the appropriate heading in parentheses; you may also indicate the paragraph under the heading that you are referring to, even if the paragraphs are not numbered.

Hoppin and Taveras (2004) pointed out that several other medications were classified by the Drug Enforcement Administration as having the “potential for abuse” (Weight-Loss Drugs section, para. 6).

NOTE: Electronic files in portable document format (PDF) often have stable page numbers. For such sources, give the page number in the parenthetical citation.

How do you cite something from a website in your List of References?

From Research & Documentation Online, 5th ed., by Diana Hacker:


Citations in your List of References


3. Organization as author

If the publisher is not the same as the author, give the publisher’s name as you would for any other source.

41. Document from a university Web site or government agency - Name the organization or agency in your retrieval statement.

Cosmides, L., & Tooby, J. (1997). Evolutionary psychology: A primer. Retrieved from University of California, Santa Barbara, Center for
       Evolutionary Psychology website: /research/cep/primer.html


39. Document from a Web site List as many of the following elements as are available: author’s name, publication date (or “n.d.” if there is no date), title (in italics), and URL. Give your retrieval date only if the content of the source is likely to change.

Source with date

up to directory menu

Source with no date

Archer, D. (n.d.). Exploring nonverbal communication. Retrieved from



E-Learning & Instruction Librarian

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Linda LeBlanc
HA-102, Amelia V. Gallucci-Cirio Library, Hammond Hall
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