Q. How do I reference and cite an app?

I want to cite the app itself, not necessarily the content.

Answer

Reference Pattern:

Author or rights owner. (date). Title (Version) [Mobile app]. Publisher. https://xxxxxxx


Sample references for the app itself:     Note: Citations are Times New Roman, double spaced with hanging indents.

Adobe Systems Incorporated. (2014). Adobe Photoshop Express (Version 6.5.2) [Mobile app]. Retrieved from http://itunes.apple.com

Bibliotheca. (2017). CloudLibrary (Version 3.7.2) [Mobile app]. Retrieved from https://itunes.apple.com/

Creative Empire. (2017). Mango Languages (Version 3.1.10) [Mobile app]. Retrieved from https://itunes.apple.com/

Girl Scouts of the USA. (2018). Girl Scout Cookie Finder (Version 5.1) [Mobile app]. Retrieved from https://itunes.apple.com/

 

Issues:

If you have used the app for a while, it might be difficult to find the:

  • author/rights holder
  • date of app publication
  • version 

To follow APA's lead on this, I had to search my App Store and look at the details from there. 

Look under What's New in the app detail for the version, in the "Information" section for the seller (author), and at the bottom for the copyright date on the app which will serve as the date for the citation.


You will note that APA wants the URL of the app. They indicate that the URL of the app store is acceptable, so if you have an iPhone or iPad, all of your URLs can be the same: the URL of the apple iTunes store. Same for Android users: the URL of the Google Play store.


Sample in-text citations that match the one of the above references:

The Girl Scout Cookie Finder app from Girl Scouts of the USA (2018) allows its users to find local Girl Scout cookie sales near them, and searches can be filtered by ZIP code and desired date.


Using NoodleBib to cite an app

  1. Login to your NoodleTools account.
  2. Create a project or use a pre-existing project 
  3. Click on Sources
  4. Click on + Create New Citation
  5. Click on the File, App, e-book tab, then click on Mobile App

6. Fill in the needed information and click Submit.

See APA Academic Writer > Learn > Reference Examples

Media

  • Mobile application software (app), individual or corporate author, not based on a book or periodical

    American Psychological Association. (2013). APA Journals Pro (Version 1.1) [Mobile application software]. Retrieved from https://play.google.com/store/apps

    Epocrates. (2011). Epocrates Essentials for iPhone (Version 3.14) [Mobile application software]. Retrieved from http://www.epocrates.com/products/iphone/index.html

Topics

  • Last Updated Jun 30, 2020
  • Views 28872
  • Answered By Emily Gilbert, Health Sciences Librarian

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Comments (1)

  1. Thank you so much!! This was very helpful!!
    by Ash on Nov 25, 2016

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