APA referencing 7th edition

A guide to APA referencing (7th edition). APA stands for American Psychological Association

Introduction to the APA 7th Referencing Style

Staff and students of Unitec are responsible for acknowledging the sources used when writing research articles, books, assignments and projects. You must acknowledge what you have read in order to avoid plagiarism, and so that:

  • readers of your work can find the original sources you used
  • the authors of the original sources you used are given credit for their work
  • your own research and ideas are clearly evident and you are given credit for your work
  • your work has credibility in the larger realm of scholarly knowledge

There are two parts to acknowledging another's work within your own:

  1. You use an in text citation in the main body of your work that has some brief information about the source.
  2. You provide the complete information about the source at the end of your work in a Reference List.

The way in which these two parts are laid out is determined by a bibliographic style. Most Schools at Unitec use the American Psychological Association (APA) style.  This guide gives you examples of how to correctly reference a wide range of resources in the APA style 7th edition.

If you require more help with referencing than this guide can provide please contact the Learning Advisors.  

What is Plagiarism?

Unitec considers plagiarism a serious academic offence. Unitec's Student Disciplinary Statute 2020 (Appendix 1, section 3) defines plagiarism as "using others’ ideas or work and presenting these as one’s own without acknowledgement of the source".  This may include, but is not limited to:

  1. copying or using any sentences, paragraphs, computer files or codes, multimedia, research data, creative products or website data that are the works of others without appropriate acknowledgement
  2. closely paraphrasing sentences, paragraphs or themes of others without appropriate acknowledgement
  3. using, summarising or extracting another person's concepts, experimental results or conclusions without appropriate acknowledgement
  4. submitting material obtained from internet-based essay depositories or similar sources
  5. use of others, paid or not, to research, write or present material submitted for assessment
  6. submitting one's own previously assessed or published work for assessment or publication elsewhere, without appropriate acknowledgement and/or approval (for example submitting content from one assignment as part of another assignment, without approval)


Consequences of Plagiarism

If you are caught plagiarising, there are a range of disciplinary actions that can be taken against you, from an oral or written warning to being excluded from any Unitec programme of study.

How do I avoid plagiarism?

Take careful notes of where you find your information and always acknowledge the work of others, whether it be:

  • selections of text
  • quotations
  • graphics
  • tables
  • figures
  • graphs or diagrams

If you:

  • regularly make photocopies from books or journal articles
  • print out articles from databases, web pages
  • scan graphs, diagrams, photographs, artwork

remember to note down the details you will need to cite the information in your assignment. The details you need may differ depending on what bibliographic style your department requires, but the minimal information to record should include:

  • Who is responsible for the work eg. the author, designer
  • The name of the work eg. a title
  • When it was produced eg. the publishing date
  • When you accessed the information eg. for material from the web

You may find it useful to use bibliographic management software like Mendeley or Zotero to manage your references and citations.  Talk to your Subject Librarian for more information on these options.  

Example of a reference list (in APA 7th)

Watch these YOUTUBE VIDEOS for more help with some common APA 7th references

Watch these "APA 7th in Minutes" videos for more help on creating references for Books, Journal Articles, Websites, Online Images and YouTube Videos and for help in doing in-text citations.

Attribution/Credit for all videos: "APA 7th in Minutes" videos by Humber Libraries are licensed under CC BY 4.0

Microsoft Word Referencing - APA 7th ed. not available


The APA Referencing Tool embedded into Microsoft Word has not been updated to APA 7th edition.  It is still on APA 6th edition.

Thus, please do not use Microsoft Word Referencing to help you with your references.  Mendeley or Zotero are good free options for reference management help.