Q. How do I put figures (images, photos, bar graphs, charts) into my paper in APA style?




  • Figures are any type of graphical illustration other than a table.
  • They are used to illustrate a point and deepen readers' understanding.

Usage Guidelines:

  • Figures must add to the reader’s understanding of the content of the paper; they should not be added just to provide visual interest.  For more information, see section 7.22 of the APA Publication Manual (7th ed.).
  • Figures must be used ethically. Copyright laws must be followed; simply citing a source does not make its use copyright compliant. A good rule of thumb: Use figures from ClipArt, Creative Commons, or the library’s rights-cleared image database, Image Quest.

References and Citations:

  • You must provide complete citations for figures and tables in your paper and in your reference list. 

References with NoodleTools:

  • If the figure came from an image database, such as Image Quest, choose Painting, Sculpture, or Photograph from NoodleTools’s citation type drop-down menu.
  • If the figure came from within a source like a book, an article, or a web site, choose a citation type that matches the source.

Citations Guidelines:

  • Figure #
  • Appears above the figure, bolded
  • The number will reflect if it is the first (1), second (2), third (3), etc. figure in the paper.
  • Figure Title
  • The title appears one double-spaced line below the figure number in italics title face.
  • Note
  • The note appears below the figure and describes what the figure is about and how it relates to the content of the paper. 
  • If the image was taken from a source and is not clipart, the note should include a copyright attribution statement.
  • Citation
  • If the figure was taken from source material, a reference for the figures should be included in the reference list.



  • Figure numbers are used in the text (a "call out") to refer to and explain the presence of the figures.

For more information, see:


  • Last Updated Jul 02, 2020
  • Views 291083
  • Answered By Emily Gilbert, Health Sciences Librarian

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