Methods for Creating Citations

There are several ways to generate citations.

  • Citation generation software.  The library recommends Zotero (see the Related Resources, Guide to Zotero).
  • Citation utilities in library databases
  • Citation tools in Google Docs and Word
  • Drafting citations by hand using the style manual as a guide.

Citations generators, utilities and tools are all imperfect but save you time.  To ensure that you create consistently accurate citations, check citations against the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (not available online).

Library Database citation generators

Most library article databases have tools that automatically generate APA citations.  When viewing an article abstract click on the cite icon and cut and paste the citation into the references cited list in your document. 

Sometime there are mistakes (usually involving capitilization) in the citations generated.  If the citation generated is inaccurate, you can still save time by cutting and pasting the citation and editing it.  Use the Purdue OWL, or your print APA Publication Manual, 7th edtion to identify the correct citation form.

 In ABI/Inform a Proquest Database

View of citation tool on Proquest

And This Pop-Up Displays the APA Citation

Note APA 7th edition is in use now.  Proquest has not yet updated their citation generator to reflect the changes in the style.

View of APA 6th citation generated by Proquest

In Business Source Premier an EBSCOhost Database

Veiw of citation generator icon on EBSCOHost

And this Pop-Up displays the Citation

View of APA citation generated by EBSCOHost

Examples of APA Citations

These are examples of APA citations for materials HRD students are likely to need to cite but that are not readily managed by free bibliography generators tools such as EASYbib or Noodletools.  If using Zotero you will need to select the item type:

Article on a Web Page (Not Part of Journal or Newspaper)

Article on the SHRM website

Mauer, R. (2017, August 24). EEOC: Strenghts tests risk bias against women. SHMR.

Parenthetical citation: (Mauer, 2017)

Narrative citation: Mauer (2017)

Article from a newsletter or journal without DOI, nondatabase URL


Jean, S. (2020, Winter). Pay equity: Somebody has to regulate. Labor and Employment Law., 48,(2), 1-11.

Parenthetical citation: (Jean, 2020)

Narrative citation: Jean (2020)

article from a scholarly journal with doi

screen shot of article from Human Resource Development Review

Lee, J. Y., Rocco, T. S., & Shuck, B. (2020). What is a resource: Toward a taxonomy of resources for employee engagement. Human Resource Development Review, 19(1), 5-38. doi:

Parenthetical citation: (Lee, Rocco & Shuck, 2020)

Narrative citation: Lee, Rocco & Shuck (2020)


report authored by an organization

Cover of Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends

Deloitte Insights. (2020). 2020 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends.

Parenthetical citation: (Deloitte Insights, 2020)

Narrative citation: Deloitte Insights (2020)

government report


United States Governement Accountability Office. (2020, February 5). Military Personnel: DOD has made limited progress toward improving oversight of the Exceptional Family Member Program.

Parenthetical citation: (United States Governement Accountability Office, 2020)

Narrative citation: United States Governement Accountability Office (2020)

Data Sets or Statistics


Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2012) Employment cost index: Private industry wages and salaries 2002-2012. [data file].

video (Ted Talk)

screen shot of TED talk

Edmondson, A. (2017, October). How to turn a group of strangers into a team [Video]. TED Conferences.

Parenthetical citation: (Edmondson, 2017)

Narrative citation: Edmondson (2017)