AP Citation

“Associated Press style provides guidelines for news writing. Many newspapers, magazines and public relations offices across the United States use AP style. Although some publications such as the New York Times have developed their own style guidelines, a basic knowledge of AP style is considered essential to those who want to work in print journalism” (Purdue).

Basic Guidelines



-Only abbreviate the names of states when they appear alongside the name of a

city or military base.  All other times, write the name out.

Ex: Springville, Ill.; Marshal Air Force Base, Fla.

-State abbreviations do not follow the two letter abbreviation code.  For the proper abbreviations see:


Canadian provinces and territories are not abbreviated.


-For the United States of America, use these particular guidelines:

-When it is a noun, spell it out

Ex: The United States is fighting terrorism.

-When it is an adjective, abbreviate it

Ex: The U.S. politician missed his flight.


-When using the date, do not use st, nd, rd, or th.

Ex: March 7 is national cereal day.

-Months can be abbreviated only when used as a specific day.  Only abbreviate the following months:

Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov., Dec. Ex: He died on Sept. 18.

-Use Arabic numerals for numbers 10+.


-When used in everyday expression

Ex: A thousand times no!

-For wars, Popes, and monarchs, use Roman numerals

Ex: Henry VIII

-Use numbers for time except for noon and midnight.



-Quotation Marks

-Each person’s words in a dialogue are placed in a separate paragraph.

-Put the names of books, works of art, songs, television programs, etc. in quotation marks.


-Newspaper, magazines, and books of religions.

-Punctuation goes inside the quotation marks

-Dashes, semicolons, question marks and exclamation points go outside the quotation marks when they apply to the sentence as a whole and not the quoted material.

-Periods and commas always go inside the quotation marks.


-No comma before the last item in a series.

Ex: Jenny, Gena and Mary

-When only a month and year are used, do not separate them with a comma.

Ex: June 1934 was the coldest month in Conga’s history.




-The name of the city is in capital letters

-Follow the city by its state, country or territory if the city is not large and well-known.

Ex: LEHI, Utah is undergoing the remaking of “Footloose.”

-Do not capitalize the first letter in the seasons.



-Numbers one through nine need to be spelled out.


-Always use Arabic numerals for ages and percentages.

-When a number starts out a sentence, spell it out, unless the sentence begins with a year.

Ex: 1996 was the last time he would run for office.