Skip to content

APA 7th Edition Update

XKCD webcomic Wikipedian Protester

Announcing the Seventh Edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, more commonly known as APA Citation Style! The APA published their updated 7th Edition late last Fall, and the APA-using community is beginning to transition from the 6th Edition to the 7th. Luckily, most of the changes have been quality-of-life changes.

The good news for students?

  • No more running heads!
  • No need for publication place in book citations!
  • Any in-text citations with more than three authors are shortened to the first author and et al.!
  • Clearer guidelines for including contributors other than authors and editors, e.g. podcast hosts!
  • Increased font flexibility!
    • Hello Calibri 11, Arial 11, Lucida Sans Unicode 10, and Georgia 11 (in addition to the old favorite, Times New Roman 12)!

The goal of APA 7th Edition is to codify many of the suggested citation rules the APA created as the 6th Edition evolved. In addition to making these suggestions into official guidelines, the APA has adjusted how it cites more modern texts, in particular anything with a URL. The hope is to make citation a more streamlined process, while maintaining a rigorous academic standard.

The APA is suggesting users begin to switch to 7th Edition rules Spring 2020, though some universities and groups may choose to put off the transition to Fall 2020. Check with your professors on which version they expect you to use, if it’s not included in your syllabus.

For 7th Edition resources, be sure to check out our APA Research Guide. We recently updated it to conform to the 7th Edition. The APA Style Blog has also transitioned to 7th Edition, and is a great resource for more obscure citation questions. For 6th Edition resources, Purdue OWL still has their 6th Edition site live, though they do note they are scheduled to publish the updated 7th Edition guide in Spring 2020. You can also still find the APA Style Blog’s 6th Edition Archive, so you can search it for answers to any 6th Edition questions.

You can always reach out to us at Himmelfarb Library with any questions you may have. Our reference staff are more than happy to answer your questions about APA 6th or 7th Edition!

Image Source: Munroe, R. (2007). Wikipedian protester [Webcomic]. xkcd. https://xkcd.com/285/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

GW is committed to digital accessibility. If you experience a barrier that affects your ability to access content on this page, let us know via the Accessibility Feedback Form.