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APA Referencing - Education & CCSC students: Referencing questions

This guide provides information on how to reference using the APA 7th edition publication style

Referencing questions

APA 7th Edition

Referencing questions

Abbreviating titles and organisation names

Abbreviating titles and organisation names

Can I abbreviate a classical book title or well-known organisation name in an in-text citation?

Yes, This issue is particularly relevant when referring to the Bible frequently, using a version with a long title and sometimes a sub-title. In the examples below, check the copyright page of the version you are referring to and insert your Bible's details. For more information about referencing the Bible, see How to reference the Bible.

Narrative citation first time cited

The Bible is cited as though it is a book with no author. The title is used in the place of the author.

King James Bible (KJB, 1769/2017)


Narrative citation for second and following citations

In the KJB (1769/2017), ...


Parenthetical citation first time cited

(King James Bible [KJB], 1769/2017)


Parenthetical citation for second and following citations

(KJB, 1769/2017)


The examples below demonstrate the abbreviation of an organisational name used as a group author.

Narrative citation example

The American Psychological Association (APA, 2017) published…


Parenthetical citation example

(American Psychological Association [APA], 2017)


After the use of the full name followed by the abbreviation in the first citation, the abbreviation "APA" can be used in the remainder of the document. 


More information -- Abbreviations

More information -- How to reference the Bible

More information -- Group author

Multiple works with the same author and publication date

Multiple works with the same author and publication date

References by the same author(s) with the same publication date are arranged alphabetically by title (excluding or The). Place lowercase letters--a, b, c, and so forth--immediately after the year, within the parentheses. 

Baheti, J. R. (2001a). Control ...
Baheti, J. R. (2001b).  Roles of ...

See also the references to Cooling's work in the Sample Reference List .

Once you know the order of the reference list (by title), use the publication year with the lower-case letter for in-text citations, e.g. (Cooling, 2017a; 2017b).

(American Psychological Association, 2020, p. 303-306)



When should I use italics?

Use italics for:

  • titles of books, periodicals, films
  • introduction of a new, technical, or key term or label (after the first use, do not italicise)
  • letters, words or phrases given as a linguistic example

Do not use italics for:

  • commonly used (in English) foreign language phrases
  • abbreviations
  • emphasis, unless the emphasis might be misread

More information on the APA website

(pp. 170-172)

American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.).



Can I reference a dissertation/thesis?

Dissertation is a North American term for the long research papers written by students undertaking post-graduate degrees at university. In Australia the term thesis is commonly used instead of dissertation.

The principle is to use scholarly, peer-reviewed, published journal articles and authoritative books by those published researchers. If you have searched EBSCO, ProQuest, Google Scholar, and the Recommended Readings for the unit for sources, and wish to reference a thesis, that is appropriate as long as the balance of sources are peer-reviewed journal articles and authoritative books. 


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