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Public Health Research Guide: Resources for Public Health Educators

An introduction to resources that will assist in Public Health research.

Resources to use

Reviews, Summaries, etc... The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association 6th edition

OPAL Call Number: REF BF76.7.P83 2010


The chapter/sections that are helpful:

Crediting Sources 6.31 pages 187-192  “Electronic Sources and Locator Information”

See also the Examples by Type 7.01 pages 198-202  

Both of these parts of the APA 6th edition explain the digital object identifier (DOI) and how to include it in the reference.  

What is a DOI?

The digital object identifier (DOI) is a unique identifier for citation linking services for scientific publishing in the digital world. It is another way for people to find things in the digital environment so it is helpful to include it in a citation if it is available.

APA recommends that you include this DOI when it is available for both print and electronic sources.  Some of the automatic citation makers include this and some do not. 

See the journal example with a DOI included on page 198 of the APA 6th edition.  

The web site called is a place where you can look up the DOI number for articles and include them in your citation.

APA still offers the flexibility of using the -- Retrieved from format IF the DOI is not available.  It is  up to the individual professor on how to enforce/interpret this change.

Additional places to go for APA help

The library home page lists several links to find APA help.


EveryDay Writer : when this web site's APA examples are updated to the 6th edition I will link it here.

The APA Formatting and Style Guide from the OWL at Purdue : Purdue University library lists APA 6th edition examples. 

The Writing Center from the University of Wisconson at Madison has APA 6th edition examples. The JOURNAL examples show the DOI in the citations.

More APA Examples

APA Style: The Social Sciences

In most social science classes, you will be asked to use the APA system for documenting sources, which is set forth in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th ed. (Washington: APA, 2010). APA recommends in-text citations that refer readers to a list of references.

An in-text citation gives the author of the source (often in a signal phrase), the year of publication, and at times a page number in parentheses. At the end of the paper, a list of references provides publication information about the source (see p. 228 for a sample list of references).


Yanovski and Yanovski (2002) reported that “the current state of the treatment for obesity is similar to the state of the treatment of hypertension several decades ago” (p. 600).


Yanovski, S. Z., & Yanovski, J. A. (2002). Drug therapy: Obesity. The New England Journal of Medicine, 346, 591-602.

Retrieved from

Hidden DOIs

Some citations have the DOI listed at the end.  According to APA (p.189) some DOIs are hidden under buttons called "Article" "Cross Ref" or "Pub Med".

The web site CrossRef is a place to look up DOIs for articles. They have a Free DOI lookup screen and if the article has been assigned a DOI it will provide it.