Answered By: Jonathan Faerber
Last Updated: Feb 01, 2020     Views: 6024

APA 6th Edition (scroll down for APA 7th edition)

Citing a work by three to five authors

After the first full citation to a work by three, four, or five authors, use "et al." in subsequent citations after the first listed author's last name (Lee, 2011, para. 2):

First citation: (Harung, Lee, & Byng, 2010)
Subsequent citations: (Harung et al., 2010)

See "How do I cite a resource by three to five authors in APA Style?" for more information.

Citing a work by six or more authors

Insert et al. after the first listed author's last name in all citations to a work by six or more authors e.g., (Li et al., 2016). See "How do I cite a resource with six or more authors in APA Style?" for more information. 

For much more information and examples, please visit "The Proper Use of Et Al. in APA Style" in the APA Style Blog.

Reference

Lee, C. (2011, November 3). The proper use of et al. in APA Style [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://blog.apastyle.org/apastyle/2011/11/the-proper-use-of-et-al-in-apa-style.html

APA 7th Edition

Citing a work by more than two authors

Cite the first author plus “et al.” in every citation, including the first. For example, a resource by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan, and Switzler includes only the name of the primary author, followed by et al.:

  • Parenthetical citation: (Patterson et al., 2012)
  • Narrative citation: Patterson et al. (2012)

All four authors are included in the reference entry for the resource, up to and including 20 authors:

Patterson, K., Grenny, J., McMillan, R., & Switzler, A. (2012). Crucial conversations: Tools for talking when the stakes are high (2nd ed.). McGraw-Hill. https://library.books24x7.com/toc.aspx?bookid=44095

For information on formatting a reference entry for a resource cited as "et al." in text, please see "How should I present the author(s)'s and/or editor(s)'s names in my reference in APA Style?".