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APA (7th Edition) Referencing Guide

Guide to APA citation style using the 7th Edition of the APA Style Manual.

Dictionary and encyclopedia entries

A dictionary or encyclopedia entry is treated in much the same way as a chapter of an edited book, only you do not include page numbers. If the entry has an author, then attribute the entry as per normal. If it does not have an attributed author, the publisher jumps into the first position, and is referenced in text instead of an author's name.  

See When the Author Isn't a Person.


Online stable or archived version:

Author A. A. (Date). Title of entry. In E. E. Editor (Ed.), Name of dictionary/encyclopedia (edition, if not the first). Publisher. URL.

Online continuously updates (no archived version)

Author A. A. (n.d.). Title of entry. In E. E. Editor (Ed.), Name of dictionary/encyclopedia (edition, if not the first). Publisher. Retrieved Date. URL.

In print:

Author A. A. (Date). Dictionary/Encyclopedia entry. In A. Editor & B. Editor (Eds.), Name of dictionary/encyclopedia (edition, if not the first). Publisher.

No entry author:

When there is no named author for the entry, treat the dictionary/encyclopedia as an edited book and move the editors to the author position:

Editor, A., & Editor, B. (Eds.). (Date). Dictionary/Encyclopedia entry. In Name of dictionary/encyclopedia (edition, if not the first). Publisher.

If there are no named authors or editors, treat the company responsible for the dictionary/encyclopedia (e.g. Merriam-Webster, Macquarie University, Oxford University Press) as a corporate author:

Corporate Author. (Date). Dictionary/Encyclopedia entry. In Name of dictionary/encyclopedia (edition, if not the first). Publisher.


Butler, S. (Ed.). (2017). Zombie. In Macquarie dictionary (7th ed.).

Güzeldere, G. (2005). Zombies. In L. Nadel (Ed.), Encyclopedia of cognitive science. Wiley.

Oxford University Press. (n.d.). Zombie. In Oxford English Dictionary. Retrieved January 4, 2020, from

Hughes, J. M., Michell P. A., & Ransom, W. S. (Eds.). (1992). Zucchini. In The Australian concise Oxford dictionary (2nd ed.). Oxford University Press.

In Text

Zombies are noted to be indistinguishable from humans, apart from certain mental features (Güzeldere, 2005).

The Macquarie Dictionary defines a zombie as a corpse "supposedly brought to life" by supernatural forces (Butler, 2017).

Zucchinis are a variety of marrow, also known as a corgette (Hughes et al., 1992).

A zombie is a rum-based cocktail with fruit juice and liqueur (Oxford University Press, n.d.)


  • If you are using an online dictionary which does not have dates for the individual entries, and only a copyright date that is consantly updated, use (n.d.) as your date and include a retrieved date before the URL.

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