APA: Online Sources

The examples found in the APA section are based on the style guide Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th ed., 2020.

To cite a source you found online, follow the format and examples below.

Tip: If you’re looking at an online journal, magazine, or newspaper article, please refer to the Articles section. If it’s an online book, see the Books section, and for an online government report, go to the Government documents section.

Author Last Name, Initials. (Date material published or posted). Title of document. Name of site. http://xxxxxx

  • If there is no author, place the title in the author position.
  • If there is no publication date, use n.d.
  • If the document is likely to change (like in the case of wikis), include the date of retrieval before the URL like this: Retrieved June 5, 2020, from http://xxxxxxx
  • For content that is published frequently (like blog posts), include the year, month and day for the date of publication.
  • When there is no author, put the title of the document in the author position, followed by the date.


Author Last Name, Initials. (Date of publication). Title of document. Name of site. http://xxxxxxx


Carvey, I. (2008, January 2). The history of Africville as told by the people of Africville. Library and Archives Canada. https://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/northern-star/033005-2601-e.html

Young brain develops activity peaks while it is still growing. (2012, November 7). University of Twente. http://www.utwente.nl/en

  • When you use an entire website and not just a part of it (a specific idea, document, page, posting, etc.), you do not have to include it in your list of references. Simply add the web address to your text.


The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health website (http://www.camh.net) reflects the amalgamation of the Addiction Research Foundation and The Clarke Institute of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto.

  • If the author’s full name is not indicated, use what is available. If the author uses a screen name for posting, indicate the screen name as the author in the citation.
  • Indicate the type of format in brackets after the title. The type of format could be Blog comment, Status update, Image post, etc.


Author Last Name, Initials. (Date of posting). Title [Format]. Name of site. http://xxxxxxx


Sam. (2012, February 14). Absolutely brilliant post [Blog comment]. Harlots, Harpies and Harridans: Infamous Women in History. http://harlotsharpiesharridans.com/blog/2012/02/13/katherine-howard

  • The person who posted the video is considered the author.
  • If both the author’s real name and user name are available, include the username in square brackets. When there is only a username, place it in the author position without the brackets.


Author’s Last Name, Inititals. [Username]. (Year, Month  Day). Title of video [Video]. Name of site. http://xxxxxx


minutephysics. (2012, November 11). Open letter to the President: Physics education [Video]. Youtube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGL22PTIOAM&feature=g-logo-xit

  • Many online images are missing the name of the author and title. In this case move the description, in brackets, to the author position as follows:  [Photograph of lake]. (2001). http://xxxxxxxx


Author Last Name, Initials. (Date of publication). Title [Description]. Name of site. http://xxxxxxx


Misrack, R. (1998). Swamp and pipeline, Geismar, Louisiana [Photograph]. Discover Magazine. http://discovermagazine.com/galleries/zenphoto/p/petrochemical#.ULd__eTAcbA

  • E-mail is considered a form of personal communication (along with private letters, personal interviews, memos, etc.) and is not included in the reference list. This type of source is included only in your text.
  • Give the author’s last name and initials as well as the most exact date possible.


One of his colleagues admitted that the research was creating a lot of discussion (J. Doyle, personal communication, May 15, 2008).

  • To find the web address of a tweet, first, expand the tweet. Then, click on “Details” (found after the date).
  • If only the username is available, include it without the brackets.


Author Last Name, Initials. [username]. (Date of posting). Entire text of the tweet [Tweet]. Twitter. http://twitter.com/xxxxxxx


Evans, D. [@DavidEvans_ROM]. (2012, November 8). #Alberta #dinosaur hunter Dr. Philip Currie receives national honour: cbc.sh/sE5wzRk [Tweet]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/DavidEvans_ROM/status/266558230447140865