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Citing Sources: Journal Articles

Learn how to cite your sources using a citation style.

How Do I Know If It's a Journal?

Journals on a shelf - photo from Flickr by the.Firebottle

Photo from Flickr under Creative Commons license, created by the.Firebottle

Not sure whether your article is from a journal? Look for these characteristics:

  • Main purpose is often to report results of original search
  • Articles usually have a very specific subject focus
  • May see sections such as abtract, discussion, results, and conclusion
  • Author of the article is an expert or specialist in the field and often their credentials are listed
  • Article is intended for students, scientists, researchers and/or professionals instead of the general public
  • Usually includes a References list at the end
Articles may also come from magazines or newspapers

Tips

Author

If an item has no author, start the citation with the article title.

When an article has one to seven authors, all authors' names are cited in the References List entry. When an article has eight or more authors  list the first six authors followed by three spaced ellipse points (. . .) , and then the last author's name. Rules are different for in-text citations; please see the examples provided.


Titles

Italicize titles of journals, magazines and newspapers. Do not italicize the titles of articles.

Capitalize only the first letter of the first word of the article title. If there is a colon in the article title, also capitalize the first letter of the first word after the colon.

Dates

If an item has no date, use the short form n.d. where you would normally put the date 

Volume and Issue Numbers

Italicize volume numbers but not issue numbers

D O I Numbers in Library Databases

Some electronic content is assigned a unique number called a Digital Object Identifier (D O I). If a D O I is provided for a journal article, include it after the name of the encyclopedia or dictionary of the entry and edition as "doi:doi number". 

You do not need to put a period after a D O I number

If no doi number is given, Seneca Libraries recommends that you add Retrieved from ______________ database as opposed to the URL for an entry or database. This is to avoid difficulties with links.

If you have a doi number and would like to look up an item with it, click here and enter the doi number where indicated.

If you accessed the journal article through a website, provide the url instead.

Retrieval Dates

Most articles will not need these in the citation. Only use them for online articles from places where content may change often, like a free website or a wiki. 

Page Numbers

If an article doesn't appear on continuous pages, list all the page numbers the article is on, separated by commas. For example (4, 6, 12-14)




Journal Article From Library Database with D O I - One Author

Author's Last Name, First Initial. Second Initial if Given. (Year of Publication). Title of article: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number if Page Numbering Begins at 1 for Each Issue in the Volume), first page number-last page number. doi: doi number

Example

Bailey, N.W. (2012). Evolutionary models of extended phenotypes. Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 27, 561-569. doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2012.05.011

In-Text Paraphrase (Bailey, 2012)
In-Text Quote

(Bailey, 2012, p. 562)

Journal Article From Library Database with D O I - Two to Seven Authors

Author's Last Name, First Initial. Second Initial if Given., & Last Name of Second Author, First Initial. Second Initial if Given.(Year of Publication). Title of article: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number if Page Numbering Begins at 1 for Each Issue in the Volume), first page number-last page number. doi: doi number

Note: Separate the authors' names by putting a comma between them. For the final author listed add an ambersand (&) after the comma and before the final author's last name. 

Example

Pempek, T.A., Yermolayeva, Y.A., & Calvert S.L. (2009). College students' social networking experiences on Facebook. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 3, 227-238, doi: 10.1016/j.appdev.2008.12.010t

In-Text  See chart here 

Journal Article From Library Database no D O I - One Author

Author's Last Name, First Initial. Second Initial if Given. (Year of Publication). Title of article: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number  if Page Numbering Begins at 1 for Each Issue in the Volume), first page number-last page number. Retrieved from Database Name database.

Note: The APA Manual (6th ed.) requires the URL of the journal home page for online articles without a DOI. Seneca Libraries suggests that the database name be used instead.

Example

Carlisle, D. (2012). In the line of fire. Nursing Standard, 26(39), 18-19. Retrieved from Academic Search Premier database.

In-Text Paraphrase (Carlisle, 2012)
In-Text Quote

(Carlisle, 2012, p. 18)

Journal Article From Library Database no D O I - Two to Seven Authors

Author's Last Name, First Initial. Second Initial if Given., & Last Name of Second Author, First Initial. Second Initial if Given.( (Year of Publication). Title of article: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number  if Page Numbering Begins at 1 for Each Issue in the Volume), first page number-last page number if given. Retrieved from Database Name database.

Note: The APA Manual (6th ed.) requires the URL of the journal home page for online articles without a D O I. Seneca Libraries suggests that the database name be used instead.

Example

Bogan, E., & Paun, E. (2011). The assimilation of immigrants into the British labor market. Geopolitics, History, and International Relations, 3, 272, Retrieved from Diversity Studies Collection database.

In-Text  See chart here

Journal Article From a Website - One Author

Author's Last Name, First Initial. Second Initial if Given. (Year of Publication). Title of article: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number if given), Retrieved from URL

Example

Flachs, A. (2010). Food for thought: The social impact of community gardens in the Greater Cleveland Area. Electronic Green Journal, 1(30), Retrieved from http://escholarship.org/uc/item/6bh7j4z4

In-Text Paraphrase (Flachs, 2010)
In-Text Quote

(Flachs, 2010, Conclusion section, para. 3)

Note: When there are no visible page numbers or paragraph numbers, you may cite the section heading and the number of the paragraph in that section to identify where your quote came from.

Journal Article From a Website - Two to Seven Authors

Author's Last Name, First Initial. Second Initial if Given., & Last Name of Second Author, First Initial. Second Initial if Given.(Year of Publication). Title of article: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number if given), first page number-last page number if given. Retrieved from URL

Example

Davidson, J.E., Burnell, L., Devin, L., Rochon, R., VanWyk, C., & Virgen, M. (2012). Poetric transcription to explore the concept of caring. International Journal of Caring Sciences, 5, 120-128. Retrieved from http://www.caringsciences.org/volume005/issue2/7.Poetic%20Caring.pdf

In-Text  See chart here

Journal Article In Print - One Author

Author's Last Name, First Initial. Second Initial if Given. (Year of Publication). Title of article: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number if Page Numbering Begins at 1 for Each Issue in the Volume), first page number-last page number.

Example

Jungers, W.L. (2010). Biomechanics: Barefoot running strikes back. Nature, 463, 433-434.  


In-Text Paraphrase (Jungers, 2010)
In-Text Quote

(Jungers, 2010, p. 433)

Journal Article In Print - Two to Seven Authors

Last Name of First Author, First Initial. Second Initial if Given, & Last Name of Second Author, First Initial. Second Initial if Given. (Year of Publication). Article title: Subtitle if any. Name of Journal, Volume Number(Issue Number Issue Number if Page Numbering Begins at 1 for Each Issue in the Volume), first page number-last page number.

Note: Separate the authors' names by putting a comma between them. For the final author listed add an ambersand (&) after the comma and before the final author's last name. 

Example

Falls, S.W., Neal, R.B., & Torres, S. (2008). Doing it better: Cap off to this sewing project. Nursing, 38(5), 17. 

In-Text Paraphrase See chart here

When You Have Eight or More Authors

When a journal article has eight or more authors:

References List

List the first six authors followed by three spaced ellipse points (. . .) , and then the last author's name. 

In-Text Citation

See chart here