How to Use ‘‘et al.’’ in APA Style (7th Edition)

The term ‘‘et al.’’ is the abbreviated form of the Latin term ‘‘et alia,’’ which means ‘‘and others.’’ It is used in academic in-text citations when referring to a source with multiple authors. In APA style, for a source with three or more authors, list the first author’s last name and “et al.” for all citations, including the first citation.

28.11.2020

How to Use ‘‘et al.’’ in APA Style (7th Edition)

 

The Term ‘‘et al.’’ is the Abbreviation of Latin Term ‘‘et elia,’’ Meaning ‘‘and others’’

The term ‘‘et al.’’ is the abbreviated form of the Latin term ‘‘et alia,’’ which means ‘‘and others.’’ It is used in academic in-text citations when referring to a source with multiple authors. In APA style, for a source with three or more authors, list the first author’s last name and “et al.” for all citations, including the first citation. Note that this rule has changed from APA 6th edition guidelines on using ‘‘et al.’’ which recommend listing all author names in the first citation up to five authors but then using ‘‘et al.’’ for the second and subsequent citations.

In October 2019, the American Psychological Association (APA) introduced the 7th edition of the APA Publication Manual, which replaces the 6th edition. The in-intext citation for works with three or more authors is now abbreviated right from the first citation. You only include the first author’s name and “et al.”

(Parker, Robin, & Williams, 2018)

(Incorrect)

(Parker et al., 2018)

(Correct)

(Alison, Brier, Levy, & Wan, 2019)

(Incorrect)

(Alison et al., 2019)

(Correct)

For two authors: Always cite both authors' names in-text everytime you reference them.

(Wan et al., 2020)

(Incorrect)

(Wan & Lawrence, 2020)               

(Correct)

Here is how this would look for a source authored by Parker, Robin, and Williams published in 2018.

  • (Parker et al., 2018)

            or

  • Parker et al. (2018) claimed that…

Note that there will be no comma between the surname and ‘‘et al.’’ but a comma should be placed before the date in parentheses citation.  Also, the period goes only after the ‘‘al.’’    even when it falls in the middle of a sentence.

Use ‘‘et al.’’ in APA Style (7th Edition)

The Correct Use of ‘‘et al.’’

Authors make several mistakes when using ‘‘et al.’’ in academic writings. The “al” in “et al.” is always followed by a period because the period shows that it is the abbreviated form of the term ‘‘et alia.’’

Thus, the following forms are not correct: ‘‘et al’’, ‘‘et. al’’, ‘‘et. al.’’

The proper use of the abbreviation is ‘‘et al.’’

‘‘et al’’, ‘‘et. al’’, ‘‘et. al.’’

(Incorrect)

(Parker et al 2018)

(Incorrect)

(Parker et. al. 2018)

(Incorrect)

(Parker et. al 2018)

(Incorrect)

(Parker et al., 2018)

(Correct)

Parker et al. argued that (2018) ...

(Correct)

(Alison et al., 2019)

(Correct)

(Alison, Brier, Levy, & Wan, 2019)

(Three or more authors)

(Incorrect)

(Wan & Lawrence, 2020)

(Correct)

(Wan et al., 2020)

(Two authors)

(Incorrect)

Also, “et al.” can be directly followed by another punctuation where necessary. However, the period always comes first:

  • (Parker et al., 2018)

When “et al.” is used right at the end of a sentence, only one period is used:

  • ... by Parker et al. (2018)

We are here to help you!

Best Edit & Proof’s editors and proofreaders aim for proper scholarly and academic tone and style in your manuscript. They will significantly improve the chances of your research manuscript getting accepted for publication. Our doctorally qualified editors provide subject-matter proofreading and editing services in several fields categorized under various disciplines. Having considerable knowledge and expertise, they will help you find the right tone and style for your paper.

At Best Edit & Proof, our English editing and proofreading services polish and perfect your paper through our two-round editing system.  Our doctorally qualified editors are native speakers of English and will check your paper for grammar, sentence structure, the overall structure, impactful communication and improve the academic quality of your paper, the content, the overall structure, the quality of findings and analysis, simplicity, and referencing.

They will help you to get your manuscript ready for successful submission to the best international peer-reviewed journals and significantly improve the chances of your research manuscript getting accepted for publication.

We edit all types of documents

If you need Best Edit & Proof expert proofreaders and editors to format your academic manuscripts or to give you the fundamental rules for formatting your academic manuscripts as described in your guidelines, such as MLA and APA styles, then contact us. At Best Edit & Proof, our proofreaders and editors edit all types of academic manuscripts.

‘‘et al.’’ in APA Style (7th Edition)

If you would like our language and subject-matter experts to work on your project and improve its academic tone and style, then please visit the order page. We have a user-friendly website, and our ordering process is simple. It’s easy! It takes only a few minutes to submit your manuscript and complete the process. Click here to see how it works.

We have flat-rate pricing based on the type of service, word count, and turnaround time. Enter your word count or copy and paste your document into our pricing calculator to get an instant quote. With the highest quality service, you can choose from the shortest delivery options to the lowest budget plans that suit you.

24/7 customer support | Live support

If you need support for editing and proofreading services, contact us. You can also e-mail us or use the 24/7 live chat module to get direct support. We have a 24/7 active live chat mode to offer you direct support along with qualified editors to refine and furbish your manuscript. Alternatively, you can text us through our WhatsApp business line.

Stay tuned for updated information about editing and proofreading services!

Follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn,  Facebook, Instagram, and Medium.

For more posts, click here.

‘‘et al.’’ in APA Style (7th Edition)

For more information about the citation styles and APA style, read the following articles: 

This handout discusses how and when to use et al. in APA style (7th edition). To give you an opportunity to practice your proofreading, we have left a few spelling, punctuation, or grammatical errors in the text. See if you can spot them! If you spot the errors correctly, you will be entitled to a 10% discount.

They Also Read

Citation Styles
Citation Styles | Which Citation Style Should I Use?
28.11.2020

There are many different citation styles that depend on the academic discipline involved. Some of the most common citation styles are American Psychological Association (APA), Modern Language Association (MLA), and Chicago/Turabian style. APA citation style is used by education, psychology, and social sciences, MLA style is used by the humanities, while Chicago/Turabian style is generally used by business, history, and the fine arts. You will need to check with your manual to determine what is required in your specific area.

Continue Reading
APA Style Citation Styles
Inclusive and Bias-Free Language in APA (APA 7th Edition Update)
28.11.2020

The American Psychological Association highlights the need to talk about all people with inclusivity and respect. Writers adopting APA 7th edition must strive to use bias-free language and avoid perpetuating prejudicial beliefs or demeaning attitudes in their writing.

Continue Reading
APA Style Citation Styles
APA Manual 7th Edition: In-Text Citation
28.11.2020

The purpose of APA style is to uniform use of elements such as selection of titles, headings, subheadings, citation of references, tone, punctuation, and abbreviations, presentation of numbers and statistics, formatting of tables and figures, and many other elements that are a part of the manuscript. The APA style consists of in-text citation and reference list entry.

Continue Reading
APA Style Citation Styles Academic Writing Formatting
Importance of Academic Referencing and Citing
28.11.2020

Whenever you use words, facts, ideas, or explanations from other works, those sources must be cited. Academic referencing is required when you have copied texts from an essay, an article, a book, or other sources verbatim, which is called quotation. You also need referencing when you use an idea or a fact from another work even if you haven’t used their exact expression.

Continue Reading
APA Style Citation Styles
APA Manual 7th Edition: The 9 Most Important Changes
28.11.2020

The American Psychological Association (APA) introduced the 7th edition of the APA Publication Manual (in October 2019), which replaces the 6th edition of the manual published in 2009. Since then, several things have changed. This article discusses the 9 most important changes in the 7th edition of the APA manual.

Continue Reading
Citation Styles MLA Style
MLA Paper Format: How to Format a Paper in MLA Style
28.11.2020

Adopting Modern Language Association (MLA) style makes it easier for readers to navigate and understand the text. It ensures consistency in the use of the English language and formatting in academic writing. In this article, we bring you a complete guide on how you format your academic papers and essays in MLA style.

Continue Reading
Citation Styles MLA Style
A Complete Guide to MLA In-Text Citations
28.11.2020

MLA is considered one of the most popular and most used citations and referencing styles in academic writing. This quick guide provides the basic rules for MLA in-text citations and reference list for academic papers and essays.

Continue Reading