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APA 7th: What's new from APA 6th?

APA 7th Edition has a number of changes from the 6th Edition. Here's a quick summary to give you a running start:


APA 7th has changed rules regarding number of authors.
  • If you have three or more authors, ALL in-text citations are First Author et al. – e.g. (Brown et al., 2020). There is no longer a difference between first and subsequent citations
  • You list up to 20 names in a citation in the reference list. If there are more than 20, you list the first 19, use ellipses (…), then the last one.


Date of publication:
  • APA 7th now requires a full date if available. The format is YYYY, Month DD, or YYYY, Season. Include however much detail is available. 
  • If the date of publication is constantly updated (such as a website that always has this year’s copyright date), use (n.d.) and include a retrieval date.

Date of retrieval:
  • Retrieval dates are required for any work that might be time sensitive, or in which the content is likely to change. This is primarily for social media, but it also applies to online dictionaries and a large number of health databases. Format is Retrieved, Month DD, YYYY, from URL/DOI.


Format of titles has changed for web pages. See below.

Place of Publication

This is no longer required. For all formats that previously included a place of publication, this information should not be included.


The format of DOIs has changed
  • Do not use doi:
  • Format DOIs as URLs: https//
  • Shortened DOIs may be used, as long as they are the official short DOIs (


  • URLs should now link directly to the source, where possible. You no longer use a URL for the journal when citing journal articles.
  • Shortened URLs may be used if the link is too long or unwieldy.
  • URLs (and DOIs) should be hyperlinked.
  • Do not use Retrieved from unless you are including a date.

Books and book chapters

  • All books and book chapters now include the publisher, even if it is an ebook (but not the place of publication).
  • Books from databases (such as Proquest Ebook Central) do not need a URL and can be cited as print books. Books and chapters that have DOIs should still be cited with the DOI.
  • You no longer use the [Version] detail for eBooks.

Journal articles

  • For online only journals that have all articles starting at page 1 (e.g. PLoS ONE), you can now use the article number instead of page numbers.
  • See note on DOIs and URLs above.
  •  See note on Dates above.

Web pages, web sites and web documents

  • See note on Dates above.
  • You now italicise the title of the work for all web-based material. There is no difference between a web page and a web document.
  • If the web page is part of a larger web site, you include the title of the web site – not in italics. Use the top level website (often the same as the publisher). If this is the same as the author, you can skip this detail. Like journals or newspapers, you do not use “In”. E.g.:
Queensland Health. (2017, September 12). Food allergy. Queensland Government. 

Other changes

Almost all reference types were changed in some way by the updating of the style. Most of the changes were the result of the changes to authors, dates and URLs/DOIs outlined above, but some types were simplified and streamlined (e.g. conference presentations) while others were given more detailed treatment (e.g. Social media cites). You will need to consult a guide or the Publication Manual for every reference type the first time you encounter it (we currently have only a limited number of advance copies of the Publication Manual, for library staff use; copies that will be available for loan are on order).

EndNote and database “cite” functions

EndNote has release an APA 7th style for downloading, however it is not accurate and has issues. You will need to correct your references. One Search and most databases have not updated their APA style yet.


micheal pan said…
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