Entry with author(s) in a reference book [from Electronic source using APA 5th ed.]


Examples of dictionary or encyclopaedia/encyclopedia entries are found in collections such as Credo Reference.

Look for an author of the entry (often at the end).

Webpages can be volatile and subject to unannounced change. Therefore, it is important include the internet address (or URL) for the webpage you accessed, as it may not be at that location when your work is assessed. A URL (Uniform Resource Locator) is the technical term for a webpage address. URLs can change, for example if the material you are viewing is generated 'on-the-fly' using content management software. URLs from these sites may be only viewable at the time of retrieval.

Whenever possible the URL you give should be a stable URL and link directly to the webpage itself. A stable URL, also known as a 'permament link' will not be generated 'on-the-fly' and is more likely to remain accessible. To check if a link to a URL is stable, paste the link into the address bar of an Internet browser to make sure that it works. If there is no stable URL for the item, give the homepage of the website.

Although you must give the full Internet address (or URL) in your reference list, you do not show this in the body of your essay. Your in-text reference must match the start of the reference as it appears in your reference list. Use the author if your reference has one; otherwise use the first few words of the title.

Standard Form

Author, Initials. (year). Title of entry. In Initials. Name of Editor/s (Ed/s.)[if any], Title of reference book. Retrieved month day, year, from Internet address



Agnostic. (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster's online dictionary. Retrieved January 14, 2009, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/agnostic

Frost, W. (2001). Rainforests. In D. B. Weaver (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Ecotourism. Retrieved August, 2, 2011 from http://www.credoreference.com/entry/cabiecotour/rainforests

McLaughlin, E. (2001). Fear of crime. In E. McLaughlin, & J. Muncie (Eds.), The Sage dictionary of criminology. Retrieved September 14, 2012, from http://site.ebrary.com/lib/portsmouth/docDetail.action?docID=10080986

Moulin, C. (2006). Alzeimer's disease. In G. Davey (Ed.), Encyclopaedic dictionary of psychology. Retrieved June 23, 2010, from http://www.credoreference.com/entry/hodderpsyc/ alzeimer_s_disease

Temple, J. (2008). Balanced growth. In S. N. Durlauf, & L. E. Blume (Eds.), The new Palgrave dictionary of economics (2nd ed.). Retrieved May 14, 2008, from http://www.dictionaryofeconomics.com/ article?id=pde2008_B000023&goto=B&result_number=86#citations

Citation in Text

... this definition ("Agnostic", 2009) ...

... definition of rainforests (Frost, 2001, para 5) draws on the principle of ...

McLaughlin discusses public faith in the criminal justice system (2001) ...

The progression of the disease (Moulin, 2006, para 2) ...

... definition of balanced growth (Temple, 2008) draws on the principle of ...



  • If the online version refers to a print edition, include the edition number after the title.
  • If no date appears on the item you are trying to reference, insert (n.d.) where you would normally give the year.
  • Omit editor information if it is not given.