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APA Style Guide: Audiovisual

This guide is designed to help students learn about APA style and cite sources for their research.

Quick Tips

There are often many contributors to the production of audiovisual material. You do not have to include all of them in your reference but may emphasize those contributors who are most essential to the work. In general, the following rules apply:

For a film, list the director as author.

For a classic music album or song, list the composer as author. 

For a modern music album or song, list the recording artist as author. 

For a television series, list the executive producer(s) as author(s).

For an episode from a television series, list the writer and director of the episode as authors.

For a podcast, list the host or executive producer as author. 

For a podcast episode, list the host of the episode as author. 

For an online streaming video, list the person or group who uploaded the video as author.

Audiovisual Material

Information required for an audiovisual reference includes:

  • Producers, directors, performers or other significant contributors
  • Copyright date
  • Title with description in square brackets 
  • Publisher (production company)
  • URL (for digital media retrieved from the Internet)

Examples of References
: (2008, March 4). Diabetes overview [Video]. http://

Gaye, M. (2008). Mercy mercy me (The ecology) [Song], On Very Best of Marvin Gaye. Universal Music Group. (Original work published 1971)

Simon, D., Colesberry, R. F., & Kostroff Noble, N. (Executive Producers). (2002-2008). The wire [TV series]. Blown Deadline Productions; HBO.

University of Oxford. (2018, December 6). How do geckos walk on water? [Video]. YouTube.

Vedantam, S. (Host). (2015-present). Hidden brain [Audio podcast]. NPR.

Examples of In-Text Citations:

It is often difficult to correctly cite an audiovisual resource in parentheses within the text of an essay. It is recommended that you introduce the work by incorporating the citation into the wording of the essay itself the first time it is mentioned. In subsequent citations, you may simply use a parenthetical citation.

Example of first citation:

In the DVD entitled Lippincott's Video Guide to Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Assessment (Thibodeau & Grupp, 2010), it is indicated that a psychiatric evaluation should... 

Example of second citation:

A behavioural assessment requires effective communication technique (Thibodeau & Grupp, 2010).

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