Whenever you cite online sources, it is important to provide the most up-to-date information available to help readers locate the source. In some cases, this means providing an article’s URL, or web address. Always provide the most complete URL possible. Provide a link to the specific article used, rather than a link to the publication’s homepage, if possible.
As you likely know, web addresses are not always stable. If a website is updated or reorganized, the article you accessed in April may move to a different location in May. The URL you provided may become an expired link and not work. For this reason, many online periodicals, especially scholarly publications, now rely on DOIs rather than URLs to keep track of articles.
As per APA (2010), follow these guidelines:
- If you are citing an online article with a DOI, list the DOI at the end of the reference entry.
- If the article appears in print as well as online, you do not need to provide the URL. However, include the words electronic version after the title in brackets.
- In all other respects, treat the article as you would a print article. Include the volume number and issue number if available. (Note, however, that these may not be available for some online periodicals.)
- There is a recent shift in how you report the DOI. Follow the information provided in the APA edition that is required in your class. Do note the older format (doi:10.1047/arc00000014) and the newer format (http://doi.org/10.1047/arc00000014)
Content from this page was adapted, with editorial changes and deletion of some examples, from:
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