The APA Format: How to Cite a Chapter in a Book using APA

Your research is complete. You have all the materials you need for writing your book. Everything is in control. But did you consider how you will cite the data you are sourcing from various different platforms or books?

Citing is the most important part of any document that you write. If you don’t cite your data, you are risking legal and other ramifications. There is always the risk of an accusation of plagiarism. Moreover, you might have to prove where you got your information from.  You may suffer some serious drawbacks if you plagiarize. So, better be safe than sorry!

Cite every chapter of the book that you write. Doing so will also give the real authors the credit they deserve. Even if you plan on paraphrasing certain content, you’ll be required to provide a citation for the ideas you referenced. After all, another person provided the material you are using for your chapter.

Even if you possess great writing skills, you are going to encounter publishing difficulties if you don’t add proper citations in your books or documents.

Now, there are three or maybe four ways to cite research in a book. Make sure you are aware of all of these. Choose the one that is most suited to your book.

Don’t merge different types of citation in one article or book. It will be difficult for the reader to figure it out.

In case you are writing as a gun for hire, ask your employer about the most suitable means of citation. This article will focus on how to cite a book or document according to the APA format.

Referencing Basics

Referencing is a means of citing the authors and books you collect information from. In other words, you have to cite all the books, websites, or other resources you used for writing your chapter.

You can list your references at the end of the book. In case of in-text referencing, you can cite the source after every section where you paraphrase any information. This helps the reader determine which ideas and content are your own, and which you sourced from the work of another author.

When writing the bibliography at the end, make sure to list all your sources in alphabetical order since this will be faster for you and the reader. Listing the references in any other order can make things confusing.

Tips on Citing A Book

Here are some hands-on tips on citing a book:

  1. First and foremost, you have to understand how citation works. Even if you are paraphrasing some article, it is important to cite the original article at the end. A lot of the time, people think that paraphrasing doesn’t require citation. However, this is not true. Add references even if you paraphrase an entire article.
  2. Search for examples or a reference list for whichever format you are following. Look at those examples carefully to get the exact idea of how to cite in a particular format.
  3. Lastly, write your citation as carefully as you write all your papers.

APA Citation – Know the Drill

APA citation follows this referencing format: Author. Date. Title. Publication.

Author’s Citation in APA Format

The author’s name is the most important part of any citation. You have to write the author’s name at the beginning of the citation in the APA format.

If you are sourcing information from multiple authors, mention the initials of first and middle name and write the complete last name. Write down the name of the authors in the exact same order as written on the source.

For example:

John, J. S., William, Jeffery and Chloe. (Date). (Title). (Publisher)

No Author Information

You might come across sources where you cannot find information about the authors. In such cases, write the title of the source first followed by the date and any other information you want to cite, such as a website.

For example:

The Adventures of Narnia, 2015, Boston, (Source Website)

APA Title Rules

You need to write the main titles of the books in italics, and the first letter for each word in block letters.

But generally, in a citation, every first letter of each word is basically upper-case.

APA Publication Rule

Lastly, there are some publication rules you need to take care of in the APA format. Adding information about the publication is also crucial since it points readers to a reliable source in case they need any clarification on the book you cite. For instance, if the reader has any confusion regarding a particular chapter of the book, he or she can easily contact the publication house for clarification.

Below are two examples of how you can cite different sources:


Author’s Name, (Date), Title, State, Publisher House.


Author’s Name, Date, Newspaper Title, Publisher

APA In-Text Citation

While writing the text for your book, it’s considered paramount that you add a citation when you refer to something, and especially if you intend to add quotes or paraphrase certain sentences of the book. It is as important as the bibliography in order to avoid plagiarism.

Read also: How to cheat Turnitin professionally?

To avoid breaking the reader’s flow of understanding and interest, you don’t need a lengthy citation. Instead, in-text citation only includes the surname of the author and the publishing year. An example of an in-text citation: (Smith, 2017)

Citing Multiple Works of Authors Within the Same Year

When citing multiple works from an author published in the same year, you can cite them as ‘a’, ‘b’, ‘c’, ‘d’ and so on. The best way to go about this is in chronological order, with ‘a’ the oldest source.

For example: (Smith 2016a), (Smith 2016b)

Citing Organization

At times, you’ll have read up for your book from content by a certain organization. It’s essential that you cite whatever book you’ve sourced your information form. If you need to do this multiple times, you don’t need to cite the complete name of the organization in every citation. For the first time, mention the complete organization’s name. You can make the citation shorter the next time.

For example:

First mention: (International Citation Association, 2015)

Second mention: (Citation Association, 2015)

Citing an Edited Book in APA Format

Various journals and books go through editors in every era just so that their relevancy can be reassured according to present-day standards. It also allows for helpful changes to be made, which make it easier for new readers to understand the content better.

Editors put a great deal of effort into doing this, which is why it’s crucial that they receive credit for their contribution as well. Luckily, citing an edited book is similar to a regular book citation. Only one thing sets it apart – The Ed part. Ed denotes editors. For more than one editor, write Eds.

For example:

Author Surname, Initials, Ed(s), Date, Title, Publisher

Citing a Chapter in the APA Format

Citing a chapter in the APA format is the trickiest part, because edited books are a collection of different chapters from different authors and different books. Even the slightest slip-up can result in you citing the wrong author with the chapter, so it is necessary to be careful to avoid any plagiarism. Adding the specific author’s name along with the chapter will be beneficial for readers who intend to gather information from your book, as well. They can then study the author in question for more details on a particular topic.

Learn how to avoid plagiarism and choose the best plagiarism checker tool from this honest review.

The basic format for citing a chapter in APA style is shown below:

Last name of the chapter’s author, initial(s), year, chapter title with editor’s initials, Book title, page number, Publisher

Citing Magazine Articles in the APA Format

In various fields and domains, opinion pieces and articles in magazines are a goldmine of information that you might find useful for your book. But just because it is a monthly issue of a magazine, doesn’t mean you don’t have to cite it.  it’s not just prestigious journals and academic diaries that have to be cited. Thankfully, citing a piece or article from a magazine isn’t all that complicated.

The basic citation format for magazines is:

Author’s surname, initials, year, day, month, Title, Title of the magazine, publisher


These are all the necessary citation details regarding the APA format that you should consider. Even though it may appear as if there are just too many citation rules to remember, you’ll get the hang of it with frequent practice. Eventually, all these considerations will come to you naturally, like a second instinct. It will significantly help you in the bibliography of your book or document.

In the meantime, you can get some help with citing sources of information by using online writing resources. Just like spelling and plagiarism checkers, many online platforms that offer an APA format generator. These generators make citation easy for you. They work wonders whenever you are in a rush.

Keep in mind these details the next time you follow the APA citation format.