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How To Cite A Dissertation In The APA Format: Useful Advice

With all of the effort that you put into your dissertation, it is important that you use the proper formatting style. Students who fail to use the right format can have serious troubles when their dissertation committee evaluates the document. If you fail to document any of your sources and have no citations in your paper, you could be accused of plagiarism. Therefore, you must know how to cite sources properly.

What is the APA Citation Style

The APA (American Psychological Association) maintains the style guide for papers written about psychology, education, and other social sciences. This organizations regularly updates the style and releases new manuals when enough changes are made. The style guide was created so that writers have a standardized way of formatting their papers and citing the sources they used. The best thing to do when you need to write a dissertation is purchase your own manual and to use it!

Create Your Bibliography Page First

When citing sources in a dissertation, you first should create a bibliography page. This is your list of sources and you will need to have the sources before you actually write the paper. As you write the paper, keep the bibliography close by so you can immediately cite the source in the paper.

Know the Authors and Dates of Publication for Most Sources

Each citation requires the same bits of information. In the paper, you need to include the author as well as the year of publication and page number, if available. The author’s name can appear in the sentence that includes the actual quote or it can appear in a parenthetical citation after the quote. The same information is required if you paraphrase the information rather than use a direct quote.

Special Sources Require Special Circumstances

Most citations will be constructed in the same way, but you might encounter a citation that requires some special circumstances. You might not have an author, or your author might be an organization. The APA organization created formatting styles for every possible circumstance you might encounter. If you use a manual, then you will not need to memorize them or try to figure them out on your own.

Know the Sources

Some of the sources will require you to use dates, not just years. In other sources, you will need to include page number, but many of the online sources you might use will not have page numbers. You will need to determine the type of source you are using to make citations easy to complete.

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