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How To Cite A Dissertation Using The APA Citation System – General Guidelines

The American Psychological Association or APA citation system is a very important and effective style of academic writing. There are some basic general guidelines and conventions that should be followed while citing a dissertation using the APA citation system.

Citing within the text

The citation within the dissertation helps a great deal in providing valuable information about the source of your work. If you wish to use the author name in the text, you can follow the author-date method. In this method, you can include the author’s name followed by the year of publication at the end of the dissertation.

Use of Direct Quotations and paraphrasing

While using quotations directly from the source, be very specific. Do not forget to mention the page number of the quote in the dissertation.

  • If the direct quotation is less than 40 words, include it within the double quotation marks in the text.
  • The double quotation marks are not needed in case the direct quotation is of 40 words or more. The quotation can be written and presented in typewritten lines of freestanding blocks.
  • If the reference text has work by a single author, the last name of the author followed by the date of publication should be mentioned; in case of a work by two authors, both the names should be mentioned whenever the reference arises.
  • In case of multiple authorships, it is important to mention all the authors the first time the reference occurs. Subsequently, write only the surname of the first author followed by "et al." and the year of publication.
  • Paraphrasing an idea is incomplete without the author(s) name and date.
  • The abbreviation Para is used in case of an electronic source that comes without a page number.

The Reference List

The importance of a Reference List cannot be overlooked. It helps one to retrieve the source of your thesis. Some important points must be kept in mind while writing the Reference List.

  • All the data should be displayed with the authors’ last name arranged in an alphabetical order.
  • In case of entries without author name, arrange the titles within the reference list alphabetically
  • The first word of a title or any other proper names that form part of the title should be capitalized.
  • Titles of journals and books should we written in italics.
  • It is mandatory to mention the last name and initials of all the authors associated with a particular work.
  • The page numbers of articles from periodicals, like newspaper should be abbreviated with p. or pp.