How do I Cite a Source with Multiple Authors in APA Style?

Note: This page reflects the latest version of the APA Publication Manual (i.e., APA 7), which was released in October 2019.

If you are citing a source that has multiple authors, follow these basic steps.

For any source with more than two authors, APA (7th) in-text citation is shortened by using “et al.” (meaning “and others”) after the first author’s name.

Parenthetical (citation at the end of a sentence)

  • General Format: (Author et al., Publication Date)
  • For Example: (Smith et al., 2013)

Narrative (incorporated into the text as part of the sentence)

  • General Format: Author et al. (Publication Date)
  • For Example: Smith et al. (2013)

Note: For APA Style 6th Edition, only use et al. when citing 6 or more authors.

In-text citations are covered in Chapter 8 of the APA Publication Manual, Seventh Edition


American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.).

Olivia Guy-Evans

BSc (Hons), Psychology, MSc, Psychology of Education

Associate Editor for Simply Psychology

Olivia Guy-Evans is a writer and associate editor for Simply Psychology. She has previously worked in healthcare and educational sectors.

Saul Mcleod, PhD

Educator, Researcher

BSc (Hons) Psychology, MRes, PhD, University of Manchester

Saul Mcleod, Ph.D., is a qualified psychology teacher with over 18 years experience of working in further and higher education.