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Book References in APA Format

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APA format is the official style of the American Psychological Association and is used in most types of science and social science writing. Before you create a reference page for your papers, essays, articles, or reports, it is important to learn how to format your references in proper APA style. The following examples and guidelines can help you prepare book references in proper APA format.

Basic Structure:

The basic structure of a book reference should list the author's last name, first initials, publication year, book title, location and publisher. Your reference should appear as follows:

Author, I. N. (Year). Title of book. Location: Publisher.
For example:
Rogers, C. R. (1961). On becoming a person. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.

Edited Book with One or More Authors:

Edited books with one or more authors should follow the basic structure of a book reference and include the initials, last name, and 'Ed.' in parentheses after the book title.

For example:

Adler, A. (1956). The individual psychology of Alfred Adler: A systematic presentation of selections from his writings. (H. L. Ansbacher & R. R. Ansbacher, Eds.). New York: Basic Books.

Edited Book with No Author:

Edited books with no author should list the last name and first initials of the editor or editors, followed by 'Ed.' or 'Eds.' in parentheses. The remainder of the reference should follow the basic structure and include the publication year, book title in italics, location, and publisher.

For example:
Atkinson, J. W. & Rayner, J. O. (Eds.). (1974). Motivation and achievement. Washington, DC: V. H. Winston.

Article Featured in an Edited Book:

Articles by individual authors that appear in edited books should list the last name and first initial of the author, followed by the publication date and book title. Next, the editors should be noted followed by the location and publisher.

For example:
Bartol, C. R., & Bartol, A. M. (2005) History of Forensic Psychology. In I. B. Weiner & A. K. Hess (Eds.), The Handbook of Forensic Psychology (pp.1-27). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Translated Books:

Books translated from another language should include the last name and first initial of the author, followed by the year of publication and book title. The first initials and last name of the translator and the notation 'Trans.' should then be included in parentheses. Next provide the location, publisher and a note of the original date of publication.

For example:
Freud, S. (1914). The psychopathology of everyday life. (A. A. Brill, Trans.). London: T. Fisher Unwin. (Original work published 1901).


  1. Remember that your reference page needs to be double-spaced.
  2. The first line of each reference should be flush-left with the margin of the page. Each subsequent line of your reference should be indented.
  3. Check out this example of a reference page for more tips
Kendra Cherry

Kendra Cherry
Psychology Guide

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