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APA (6th Edition) Referencing Guide

Referencing Guide based on the 6th Edition of APA style

Theses and dissertations

A thesis is an unpublished document produced by student as part of the requirements for the degree. They come at various levels (e.g. Honours, Masters, PhD, etc). Check with your lecturer before using a thesis for your assignment.

This is a simplified version of the advice in the APA Publication Manual, which has variations of formatting depending on where the thesis was published and how it was retrieved. If you are preparing a document for publication, check pp. 207-208 of the Publication Manual to confirm the format you need.



Author, A. A. (Year). Title of thesis: Subtitle (Type of thesis, Name of University, City, US State or Country). Retrieved from URL

In print (and not available online):

Author, A. A. (Year). Title: Subtitle (Unpublished type of thesis). University, City, US State or Country.


Lienart, G. H. (2016). Effects of temperature and food availability on the antipredator behaviour of juvenile coral reef fishes (PhD thesis, James Cook University, Townsville, Australia). Retrieved from

Hawkins, E. J. (1999). Artist and model: Shaping the creative process (Unpublished master's thesis). James Cook University, Townsville, Australia.


We acknowledge the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the first inhabitants of the nation and acknowledge Traditional Owners of the lands where our staff and students, live, learn and work.Acknowledgement of Country

Creative Commons Licence
Except where otherwise noted, this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA) 4.0 International License. Content from this Guide should be attributed to James Cook University Library. This does not apply to images, third party material (seek permission from the original owner) or any logos or insignia belonging to JCU or other bodies, which remain All Rights Reserved.