What’s New in APA-6? No More Retrieval Dates
Both in the Reference List and in the in-text citations, the principal purpose of all referencing in an academic paper is to enable the reader to easily locate source material and check not only its accuracy but also its context; in the best of all cases, this becomes the basis for further research as your readers build on the work you have done.
With the exponential growth of online sources in recent years, the ways of dealing with web-based resources have received a great deal of attention in the newest version of the APA Manual. In some cases, this has meant a reversal of earlier APA policies, as time and experience have shown that there are better ways to handle these resources than what had been prescribed in APA-5.
Such is the case with the policy on retrieval dates (called “access dates” in Chicago, Turabian, and MLA styles). This is the date on which a particular resource was consulted by the author, with the recognition that online resources can change over time. The 5th edition of the APA Manual required that retrieval dates be provided for online sources, and it built this information into the format of all Reference List entries for online material. In stark contrast, APA-6 now eschews the provision of retrieval (access) dates, except in very specific circumstances:
The retrieval statement provides the date the information was retrieved, along with the name and/or address of the source.
EXAMPLE (boldface added for emphasis):
Eid, M., & Langeheine, R. (1999). The measurement of consistency and occasion specificity with latent class models: A new model and its application to the measurement of affect. Psychological Methods, 4, 100-116. Retrieved November 19, 2000, from the PsycARTICLES database.
Do not include retrieval dates unless the source material may change over time (e.g., Wikis).
The EXAMPLE given in APA-5 (to the left) would be re-formatted under APA-6 in the following way (boldface added for emphasis):
Eid, M., & Langeheine, R. (1999). The measurement of consistency and occasion specificity with latent class models: A new model and its application to the measurement of affect. Psychological Methods, 4, 100-116. Retrieved from the PsycARTICLES database.
For those who write in multiple styles, it may be worth noting that, in this regard, APA-5 was more like MLA style than like Chicago/Turabian style, and APA-6 is more like Chicago/Turabian style than like MLA style.
|ALBERT—Read more about this editor|