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Research: APA Referencing Style: Reference list APA style

Notes to help you understand and use the APA referencing style. This lib guide is focused on the needs of IB Diploma Programme level students.

Reference list APA style

The entries in the reference list act as a full record of the sources you cited in your text. In other words, the in-text citation and the reference list entries must relate to each other. 

In the in-text tab, we used three sources of information: Phillips, 2003; UNICEF, 2009: Singh, Mathews and Pfeffer, 2010.

This is what the Reference List for these sources of information looks like:

Phillips, P. (2003). Population trends 1900-1999. New York: Puttnam & Sons Inc. 

Singh, R., Mathews, T., & Pfeffer, M. (2010). Contrasting trends in Southern European population trends. Journal of Population Studies, 7, 44 - 99. 

UNICEF. (2009). Population trends Southern Europe. Retrieved on 25 July 2014 from text. htm


The reference list is given in one alphabetic order (of the first-named author). A book with one author has been referenced. A website of an organization has been referenced. A journal article, with three authors, has been referenced.

Some tips

The reference list is given in one alphabetic order (or the first-named author).

The basic order is:

Author's surname


initial of first name

full stop/period


open brackets

Year of publication

close brackets

full stop


Title (in italic print)

full stop


Location or place of publication (usually a major city)

full stop



full stop


For a website, you need to add the date which you accessed the website. This is a requirement of the IB. 

The first name in the in-text citation must match the first name/word used in the Reference List. 

A citation generator (e.g. EasyBib) will do most of the work for you. It will be helpful though to know how the style works, as you're responsible for checking your text, which includes the reference list.