Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Cite Your Sources: ASA

In-Text Citations

A basic in-text citation includes the author's last name and the year of publication.The following section explains what citation information should be included for various situations.

Note: numbers in parentheses refer to the section in the ASA style guide in which each citation method is addressed.

Reference List

The reference list comes at the end of your paper, on a separate page, entitled References.

Put the list in alphabetical order by author (Last name) and use a hanging indent to format all entries (as shown). The reference list should be double-spaced, unless otherwise indicated by your instructor.

The list below shows you how to format various kinds of reference list entries. Titles of books and periodicals should always be in italics; article titles should be in regular type within quotation marks.

All in-text citations must be reported in your Reference list.

Book: One Author

In-text citation:

... was tested (McDonald 1994).

McDonald (1994) reported...

Reference List:

Author Last name, First name. Year. Title (Edition if it has one). Location of publisher, state or province or country: Publisher's name.

McDonald, Lynn. 1994. Women Founders of the Social Sciences. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press. 

Book: Two Authors

In-text citation:

... (Smith and Jones 2009).

Smith and Jones (2009) tested ... 

Reference List:

  • List all authors
  • Only the primary author's name is inverted as last name, first name.
  • For two authors, do not separate the first and second author by a comma; instead use "and."

Author1 Last name, First name, Author2 First name Last name, and Author3 First name Last name. Year. Title. Edition if it has one. Location of publisher, state or province or country: Publisher's name.

Winson, Anthony and Belinda Leach. 2002. Contingent Work, Disrupted Lives: Labour and Community in the New Rural Economy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Book: Three or More Authors

In-text citation:

  • When there are three authors, use all three names in the first citation in the text.

. . . (Smith, Jones, and White 2000).

  • Subsequent citations from the same source in the text follow the et al. form below:

. . . (Smith et al. 2000).

More than Three Authors

  • Use et al. for the first AND following citations in the text.

. . . (Smith et al. 2001).

Smith et al. (2001) demonstrated. . . .

Reference List:

  • For more than two authors, separate author names with a comma and include and before the final author name.

Krahn, Harvey, Graham Lowe, and Karen Huges. 2007. Work, Industry & Canadian Society. 5th ed. Toronto: Thomson Nelson.

Article in a Journal or Periodical: One Author

In-text citation:

... (Shalla 2004).

Shalla (2004) reported ... 

Reference List:

Author Last name, First name. Year. "Title of Article." Name of Publication Volume Number(Issue Number):page numbers of article.

Shalla, Vivian. 2004. "Time Warped: The Flexibilization and Maximaization of Flight Attendant Working Time." Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology 41(3):345-68.

Article in a Journal or Periodical: Two or More Authors

In-text citation:

Two Authors

Smith and Jones (2009) tested ...

... (Smith and Jones 2009)

Three authors:

  • When there are three authors, use all three names in the first citation in the text.

. . . (Smith, Jones, and White 2000).

  • Subsequent citations from the same source in the text follow the et al. form below:

. . . (Smith et al. 2000).

More than three authors:

  • Use et al. for the first AND following citations in the text.

. . . (Smith et al. 2001).

Smith et al. (2001) demonstrated. . .

Reference List:

Author1 Last name, First name, Author2 First name Last name, Author3 First name Last name, and Author4 First name Last name. Year. "Title of Article." Name of Publication Volume Number(Issue Number):page numbers of article.

Two authors:

Parnaby, Patrick and Vincent Saco. 2004. "Fame and Strain: The Contributions of Mertonian Deviance Theory to an Understanding of the Relationship between Celebrity and Deviant Behavior." Deviant Behavior 25(1):1-26.

More than two authors:

McLaughlin, Neil, Lisa Kowalcuk, and Kerry Turcotte. 2005. "Why Sociology Does Not Need to Be Saved: Analytic Reflections on Public Sociologies." The American Sociologist 36(3-4):133-51.

Public Documents (Government or Organizations) as Authors

In-text citation

. . . (Statistics Canada 2004).
. . . as reported by Statistics Canada (2004). . .

Reference List:

No Author

In-text citation:

  • ASA style assumes there is always an author. If using a public/government document, see section below.
  • If citing from an internet source, including an online newspaper article, the website's host can be used as author (for example, thestar.com).

. . . (Statistics Canada 2010).
. . . (thestar.com 2008).

Reference List:

Chapters in Books or Part of a Collection

In-text citation:

... (Duxbury, Lyons, and Higgens 2008).

... (Duxbury et al. 2008).

Reference List:

Author Last name, First name. Year. "Title of Article." Pp. (page numbers) in Name of Publication, edited by Editor1 Initial. Last name, Editor2 Initial. Last name, and Editor3 Initial. Last name. Location of publisher, state or province or country: Publisher's name.

Duxbury, Linda, Sean Lyons, and Christopher Higgens. 2008. "Too Much to Do and Not Enough Time: An Examination of Role Overload." Pp. 125-40 in Handbook of Work-Family Integration: Research Theory and Best Practies, edited by K. Korabik, D. Lero, and D. Whitehead. London: Academic Press. 

  • If the chapter or part is considered a "reprint" (as it would be in a course reader, for example), add the original publication information in parentheses at the end.

No Date

In-text citation:

. . . (Smith N.d.). 
Smith (N.d.) analysed. . .

Reference List:

Source Reprinted from an Earlier Version

In-text citation:

Provide earliest date in [brackets] and then list the publication date of the more recent version:
. . . Smith ([1890] 2000) noted...
. . . (Smith [1890] 2000).

Reference List:

Website and Electronic Sources

In-text citation:

E-Books

Use the same format as for printed material:
. . . (Jones 2009).

Online articles also available in print
Use the same format as for printed material:
. . . (Smith 2004).

Online articles only available online
Use the same format as for printed material:
. . . (Thomas 2011).

Websites
Use the same format as for printed material:
. . . (Statistics Canada 2011).


However, if the website provides a report (or similar document) which was originally published on a date other than the date retrieved, use the original publication date for the in-text citation.

Unpublished Material

Material pending publication should be cited as forthcoming:
. . . Smith (forthcoming) stated...
. . . (Smith forthcoming).

For unpublished papers, include the year; if there is no year, follow the no date (N.d.) format.

A study by Leyden (forthcoming) suggests that Douglas (N.d)…

Course Readers

In-text citation:

  • For in-text citations, follow standard author/date format.

Reference List:

  • Treat articles in course readers in the same way as chapters in part of a collection. For in-text citations, follow standard author/date format. 

Lecture Notes

In-text citation & Reference List: 

  • Treat these as books or non-periodicals if they are published, but as unpublished information if they are your own notes.
  • Lecture notes are considered published if they have been copied and distributed in print or on the Web or Desire2Learn (courselink) with the instructor’s permission.

Course Manuals

In-text citation:

  • Treat these as books or non-periodicals with the instructor as author or editor (unless another author is indicated).

Reference List:

  • Treat these as books or non-periodicals with the instructor as author or editor (unless another author is indicated).

E-Resources and E-Articles

  • Format in the same manner as references above and include the e-resource URL and date of access.

Author Last name, First name. Year. "Title of Article." Publication Name Volume number(issue number). Retrieved Month day, Year (http:// address).

Kushner, Joseph. 2010. "Cholera Outbreak in Haiti Slow." The Globe and Mail October 25. Retrieved December 25, 2010 (http:// address).

  • Include the DOI (Digital Object Identifier) number at the end of a reference, if an e-journal article has one. Note that the DOI replaces the retrieval date.

Persell, Caroline Hodges, Kathryn M. Pfeiffer, and Ali Syed. 2008. "How Sociological Leaders Teach: Some Key Principles." Teaching Sociology 36(2):108-24. doi: 10.1177/0092055X0803600202.

A Specific Part of the Source

Page numbers appear after the year, separated by a colon without a space:
. . . (Smith 2010:198).

Another Citation within Your Source

Avoid using "secondary‟ sources by finding and using the original source (e.g. Smith) whenever possible. If you can't find the original, list only your "secondary" source (e.g. Jones) in the reference list.
. . . Smith's study (as cited in Jones 2010:39).

Multiple Sources, Different Authors

Place them either in alphabetical order by last name of primary author OR by date, separated by a semi-colon. Whichever you choose, be consistent throughout your paper.

. . . (Jones 2010; Smith 1990; Thomas 2000).
OR . . . (Smith 1990; Thomas 2000; Jones 2010).

Multiple Sources, Same Author

Order them chronologically, earliest to latest.
. . . (Jones 1978, 1990, 2000).

Note: In the following example, an "a‟ and "b‟ designation distinguish two works by the same author in the same year. These are also distinguished by "a" and "b" in the reference list, where they should be ordered alphabetically by title:
. . . (Jones 2000a, 2000b).

Direct Quotations

  • Be sparing with direct quotations, using them only when paraphrasing would be inappropriate or not adequately convey the meaning intended by the author.
  • Direct quotes are surrounded by double quotation marks:

Jones (2010) understood that "upon their arrival, trouble would follow" (p. 23).

…"upon their arrival, trouble would follow" (Jones 2010:23).

  • When quoting a block of text (more than 50 words), quotation marks are not used but rather, the entire block is single spaced and indented on both sides:

As Zweig (2000) defines it:

  • When I talk about the working class, on the other hand, I am talking about people who share a common situation in these social structures, but one without much power. To be in the working class is to be in a place of relative vulnerability—on the job, in the market, in politics and culture. (P. 13) Note: "P" for "page" is capitalized here when the page number is cited without author and date information.

Suggest an edit to this guide

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.