Fix This Article APA Style

Next week we start a series of APA workshops with a focus on reference lists. Here’s another warm-up activity. Below is a citation with lots of mistakes, there is in fact too much information – hope your pencil is sharpened? OK, let’s make it right.Boys-Reading-PreferencesThe citation in the beginning.

Farris, Pamela J., Werderich, Donna. E., Nelson, Pamela. A., & Fuhler, Carol J. MALE CALL: FIFTH-GRADE BOYS’ READING PREFERENCES. reading teacher, (2009). Vol. 63, Iss. 3, pp 180–188. DOI:10.1598/RT.63.3.1. Retrieved from Academic Search Premiere, April 23, 2013.

The first thing to recognize is that it’s a journal article. If you are not sure, look for a:

  • doi (digital object identifier, e.g., doi:10.1598/RT.63.3.1)
  • list of numbers referring to volume, issue, and page numbers (63, 3, 180-188)

Below is a step-by-step way of writing citations for articles in a reference list:

Format the Authors

Farris, P. J., Werderich, D. E., Nelson, P. A., & Fuhler, C. J.

The last names are first, the first names are initials, and the last author is preceded by an ampersand.

Put the Year After the Authors

Farris, P. J., Werderich, D. E., Nelson, P. A., & Fuhler, C. J. (2009).

Put the  year in parentheses followed by a period.

Sentence Case

Farris, P. J., Werderich, D. E., Nelson, P. A., & Fuhler, C. J. (2009). Male call: Fifth-grade boys’ reading preferences.

The title of the article is presented in sentence case. Only the first word is capitalized, as are proper nouns, and the first word after a colon.

Title Case

Farris, P. J., Werderich, D. E., Nelson, P. A., & Fuhler, C. J. (2009). Male call: Fifth-grade boys’ reading preferences. Reading Teacher,

The journal title is in title case (i.e., all words are capitalized), and italicized.

Volume, Issues, & Pages

Farris, P. J., Werderich, D. E., Nelson, P. A., & Fuhler, C. J. (2009). Male call: Fifth-grade boys’ reading preferences. Reading Teacher, 63(3), 180-188.

Here’s the tricky part, italicize the volume but not the issue (which is hard up against the volume number 63). Follow the volume and issue with the page numbers. There is no need in APA 6th Edition to use Vol, Iss., or pp – just keep it simple.

DOI’s & URL’s

Finally if there is a doi (write it in lower case), copy and paste it to close your citation. There is no requirement to state the database or retrieval date. If there isn’t a doi and the article was found in an online journal, include the journal’s homepage URL. If the citation has neither homepage URL, nor doi then the assumption is that the journal was read in print.

Farris, P. J., Werderich, D. E., Nelson, P. A., & Fuhler, C. J. (2009). Male call: Fifth-grade boys’ reading preferences. Reading Teacher, 63(3), 180-188. doi:10.1598/RT.63.3.1.

Reference librarian at Bank Street College Library.

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