APA 7 Citations: Data Sets, Software, and Tests

This guide replaces the APA Citations guide for the 6th edition.

What Does the APA Mean by Data Sets, Software, and Tests?

Published data or unpublished raw data, computer software, mobile apps, apparatuses, equipment, tests, scales, and inventories all fall under this category.

  • Common software and mobile apps mentioned in text but not paraphrased or quoted, do not need reference citations, nor do programming languages. What is considered to be "common" is relative to your field of study and to your audience.
  • Software or apps that do not require citations include Microsoft Office (e.g., Word, Excel, PowerPoint), social media apps (e.g., Facebook, Instagram, Twitter), survey software (e.g., Qualtrics, Survey Monkey), Adobe products, Java, and statistical programs (e.g., R, SPSS, SAS).
  • If you used common software or mobile apps during your research, simply give the proper name of the software or app along with the version number in the text.

See sections 10.9 -10.11 on pages 337-341 for more information and for this entire section see pages 337-341 in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th ed.

APA Examples of Data Sets and Toolbox

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