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Smith Library: APA Citation

Resources for the WCUI and Smith Chason Los Angeles, Ontario and Phoenix campuses.

Copyright and Plagiarism

Copyright defines an economic opportunity for the author of a creative work (i.e., people make a living creating works). Copyright information is found on the title page of a book, in the header or footer of an article, and in the footer of a website.

Plagiarism is the absence of a citation of the author that you are using in your research paper (i.e., taking credit for someone's creative work). To avoid plagiarism, cite your work using examples provided in the APA paper.

Here is a helpful video to watch: Copyright on Campus Video (Copyright Clearance Center, 2020).

Additional information on types of licensing is located at the bottom of this page under Copyright Resources and Licensing.

APA 7.0 Paper Template

Writing: Outlining and Prewriting

Put it in your own words

Citation Generators


Always give credit where credit is due and avoid plagiarism by citing your sources. WCUI utilizes the APA 7th edition method of citing resources. The best place to access how to write citations is at Purdue OWL (navigate the left column for the type of resource you need to format the citation as). For more information on copyright compliance, visit The Campus Guide to Copyright Compliance (2008).

For the References page, place the references in alphabetical order by the creator's last name, in the format already started for you in the paper. If there is one, always conclude your citation with the doi number - the digital object identifier is a persistent link in digital environments.

Do not photocopy and or distribute electronically copyrighted works to fellow students or other persons outside of WCUI for personal use or profit. Resources are provided for academic learning and completion of classroom requirements only.

  • Citing within your research paper/PowerPoint deck:
    • If you paraphrase what the author said, just follow the paraphrased material with (Author last name, year of publication):
      According to the author, the instance didn't apply (Jones, 2020).
    • If you quote the exact words of the author, follow this format:
      According to Jones (2020), "Students often had difficulty using APA style" (p. 199).
  • Using citation generators:
    • Make sure that "APA - 7th edition" is selected so the proper format is returned.
    • Some resources have "cite" in the upper right-hand corner or a little graphic of quotation marks, and you can copy and paste the citation into your paper (making sure they're in alphabetical order on the References page).
    • creates a quick bibliography since you only need three resources for WCUI's three-paged papers, or you can download Zotero to track research.
  • Article (journal) format - italicize the name and volume number only (before the parenthesis) of the journal, then list the page numbers and doi (data object identifier) URL:
    Smith, J.J., Jones, S.S., & Clark, W.Y. (2020). Capitalize the first letter of the title after each punctuation symbol: Italicize the journal and volume number. This Is The Journal, 15(5)1-21. https://10.10.37/002/7975.7.2.001 (no period)
    Hoffman, R. A. (1983). Grade inflation and student evaluations of college courses. Educational and Psychological Research, 3(3), 51–160.
  • Book format - italicize the title:
    Author, A.A. & Author, B.B. (Publication year). Title of work: Capital letter only for the first word and anything after a colon. (edition.). Publisher Name.
    Calfee, R.C. & Valencia, R.R. (1991). APA guide to preparing manuscripts for journal publication. (3rd ed.). American Psychological Association.
  • Website article format - italicize the title:
    • Author, A.A. & Author, B.B. (Publication year). Title of work: Capital letter only for the first word and any first word after a colon.  http:
      Min Han, K. (2021, February 25). How do I know if my foot pain is serious? MedicineNet.
  • Photo/Image:
    • -In- the paper/PowerPoint deck: 
      Tables, figures, graphs, etc. are formatted in the appendix after References as follows, with the following information on top of the figure (one per page, labeled Appendix A, B, C, etc.):
      Figure 1
      This is the description of the figure with no period and this block goes at the top of the figure
      Number your figures sequentially throughout the paper/presentation. Type the words "Adapted from", then the title of the image, the creator of the image, the location of the image, and any URL for the image.
    • Reference page format
      Photographer, F.M. (Publication year, Month Date). Title of Photograph [digital image]. URL
      O’Shea, P. (2010, August 29). Rescued hedgehog [digital image].
  • Video:
    • Company or Person Who Owns the Rights (Producer). (2020). Italicize the title [Video]. Website Host.
  • Podcast:
    • Last Name, First Initial. (Producer). (2020, January 1). Title of episode. (No. if applicable) [Audio podcast episode]. In Name of podcast. Publisher.

Copyright Resources and Licensing

Title 17 of United States Code, Section 106 describes what owners can do (their rights) with their copyrighted work:

  • reproduce it (hence the term copyright - they have the right to make a copy),
  • prepare derivative works (adaptations), distribute copies (for sale to public/publication),
  • publicly perform or display their works (e.g., digital audio transmission), and
  • transfer or authorize others to exercise any of these rights. 

Title 17 of United States Code, Section 107 speaks about fair use factors, which considers the purpose (non-profit education), nature, amount (and substantiality of portion used) and effect (on potential market or value) of the use of a copyrighted work under fair use. For additional information, visit the U.S. Copyright Office.

Licensing is the permission to share and use a creative work under the conditions that the creator or publisher determines.

Open access: Online resources which are free and unrestricted from cost and other access barriers, with varying levels of accessibility (green, gold, hybrid) (Wikipedia)

Creative Commons: Allows creators options of how they want to apply their work:

  • 0: Public domain. Others may copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission. Included categories: Published by U.S. Government, published prior to 1923, published between 1923 an 1963 without copyright notice or published with copyright notice on work and not renewed.
  • BY: Attribution. Others may copy, distribute, display, and perform the copyrighted work - and derivative works based upon it - but only if they give credit the way the creator requested.
  • NC: Noncommercial. Others may copy, distribute, display, and perform the copyrighted work - and derivative works based upon it - but for noncommercial purposes only.
  • ND: No Derivative Works. Others may copy, distribute, display, and perform only verbatim copies of the copyrighted work, not derivative works based upon it.
  • SA: Share Alike. Others may distribute derivative works only under a license identical to the license that governs the copyrighted work (e.g.,  educational purposes).