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A periodical is a magazine or journal that comes out in regular installments. This page provides a number of examples of how to cite a periodical article. If you can’t find exactly what you’re looking for, try match the closest example or consult the APA manual.

Basic Format

The basic format for articles is as follows:

Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (year of publication). Title of the article. Periodical Title, volume number(issue number), page range, doi.

Here is what that looks like in practice:

Rush, N. M., Quick, C. F., & Scamper, A. (2016). The handwriting of psychology students analyzed through the notation of the ampersand in final exams. The Psychic Calligraphist, 22(1), 1-18, https://doi.org/10.1241/1487.983cbb


  • Provide only initials for first names.
  • Whenever you cite more than one author, use an ampersand before the final name.
  • Don’t capitalize key words in your title. Only the first word and proper nouns need capitalization.
  • Use italics for the periodical title and volume.
  • Provide the issue number only if each issue starts pagination from page 1.
  • For more information about DOIs, check out our separate page and consult the examples below.
  • Depending on the citation, some details may be altered or omitted.


Article in Print

An article in print does not need a DOI number:

Kappa, A. B., Middlington, E. & Mooney, P. R. (2016). The non-uniformity of heterogeneous co-ed frat houses. Social Architectonics, 12, 99-108.

Article with DOI

When you add a DOI, make sure you omit the final period.

Wittles, Q. (2011). Freud and the art of doodling. Art and Psychology, 19, 22-33. https://doi.org/10.1091/1598300983

Article without DOI

If you found the article online, cite it as follows:

Plump, T. T., & Carrot, C. V. (2012). Quarterly sales of hamburgers and hotdogs in Hamburg and Frankfurt. Journal of Fast Food Economics, 9(3), 88-93. Retrieved from http://ufv.lib/us/12.9.3/sales.

More Than Seven Authors

When citing a source with more than six authors, delete every name after the sixth and before the final one. Use three spaced periods to indicate the omission:

Seacrest, B. T., Reynolds, A. T., Etheridge, L., Cruise, T., Merkel, A., Bergkamp, N., . . . Ratzinger, W. (2015). Coping with the fears of brain freezes and melting ice-cream. Childlike Psychology, 5(2), 144-89. https://doi.org/10.8733/0988434.56.777

Advance Online Publication

Sometimes a periodical may publish individual articles before including them in the final volume. In such cases, replace the volume, issue, and page numbers with the phrase “Advance online publication”:

Whipper, T. X., & Knuckleboner, P. C. (2017). Some differences between the British and the Scottish clammy handshake. Journal of Body Language. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1123/083574.bb.777

If the publishers have not yet assigned a DOI, then provide the URL of the journal’s home page instead. Before you finish your assignment, do check if the article has been published in its final form.

Publication in a Preprint Archive

The previous example demonstrates how to cite an article that is in-press and has been made available by the publisher. It may also happen that an in-press article has been shared informally. The publisher may have granted permission to the author to make the article available in a preprint archive, a website where academics can share their work. In such cases, replace the DOI with a URL:

Blunt, R., Bumbles, T. T., & Wink, M. S. (in press). Can emojis adequately capture the emotional states of adolescents? Digital Communication Trends. Retrieved from https://www.academianut.org/384/25/emojis.pdf

Magazine Article

If you’re citing a popular magazine (rather than an academic periodical), you may want to give the month of publication:

Slinky, B. (2014, May). The Elephant in the Room, or How to Tranquilize an Unusually Obese Man. Popular Anesthetist, 108(4), 33-35.

For magazines published online, add a URL (see “Article Without DOI” above).

Newspaper Article

For newspaper articles, provide the day and month, and cite page numbers by the section of the paper:

Hendrix, K. (2001, November 2). Sociology professor wears pajamas to class. Blue River Gazette, pp. B1, B7-B8.

In this example, the article can be found on pages 1 and 7-8 of section B.

For online newspapers, just replace the page range with the URL of the newspaper’s home page:

Hendrix, K. (2001, November 2). Sociology professor wears pajamas to class. Blue River Gazette. Retrieved from https://www.brgazette.com


A monograph is a longer work of criticism. It may be an extended article or an entire book. Sometimes a monograph is published in a periodical, either with other articles or by itself.

Destrier, C. T., Palfrey, M., & Nag, B. G. (1995). The Soggy Bottom Theory of Cognition [Monograph]. Journal of Strategic Ignorance, 18(2), 88-166. https://doi.org/10.9993/08.cc.1456

If the monograph is assigned a serial number, you can include it with the issue:

18(2, Serial No. 28)

If the monograph is published separately as a supplement to a particular issue, you can indicate that as follows:

18(2, Pt. 2)

Here Pt. 2 stands for part 2.

Special Issue or Section

Sometimes a periodical is devoted entirely to a single issue or topic. If you would like to cite the issue as a whole, provide the names of the editors followed by the title of the issue and the designation “special issue”:

Crabby, M., & Grumby, Z. (Eds.). (2011). The Anxiety of Influence: Why the Fear of Plagiarism Haunts Academics [Special Issue]. Journal of Insipidity, 24(1).

If you’re citing just a section of the journal, change the description of the title and add page numbers:

Florist, F., Grist, M. J., & Groanwold, A. B. (Eds.). (2007). Animation and Imagination: The Dynamics of Visualization in Early Childhood Education [Special section]. Studies in Indoctrination, 88, 59-102.

If the issue or section lacks editors, start with the title (and follow up with the date). Alphabetize titles by the first important word.


Although it’s best to cite the entire article, you may sometimes want to cite just the abstract:

Frumm, E., & Narrowbent, P. (2015). The sesquipedalian sasquatch, or the evolution of psychobabble [Abstract]. Arcane Psychology Abstracts, 3, 125.

Sorely, A., Festering, Q. T., & Uzing, X. (2017). Advanced code language for cocktail parties [Abstract]. Recherches Hors D’Oeuvre, 11(1), 1-18. Abstract retrieved from https//:www.gourmandsciencestudies.com


If the article you’re citing is different from the examples provided, you may have to improvise. For example, if there is no author, start with the title (before the date). If you are using a unique type of source, note it in square brackets after the title (e.g., [Editorial]. In each case, try follow the general format for citing periodicals.


For more information about citing periodicals, please see pp. 198-202 of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.).