Click on image to access PDF for the AMA (11th ed.) style guide.
*The following information is based on the AMA Manual of Style: A Guide for Authors, 11th edition (2020).
When you are gathering sources to use in your papers, it is a good habit to note down the following information:
Author, corporate author, editor, translator
Titles (subtitles, website, webpage - where applicable)
Edition (only if second or later editions)
Dates published (updated, accessed – used for online sources)
Issue and volume numbers (for periodicals)
DOI (preferred to permalink or URL)
*Unlike with MLA and APA, AMA sources ARE NOT indented and should be in numerical order. By “numerical order” AMA means the order in which sources are cited within the text (see the “In-Text Citations” section below)
When using in-text citations, the format is: “Example sentence where information or a particular study1 is presented and this is how you present multiple references2-4, but this is how you should reference the same source when used again1(p44). Don’t forget to cite sources in-text like this3,5 where necessary. Place superscripted numerals outside the quotations when using a direct quote.”6
Superscript numbers are placed outside periods and commas, and inside colons and semicolons.
Unpublished works and personal communications - such as interviews, email correspondence, and the like – are to be introduced in-text and left off the references list. They should be cited like so: “In an interview with Bruce Wayne (CEO of Wayne Enterprises) in March of 2020...”
References List Layout
AMA Style does not use double-space or hanging indentations. Some of the punctuation and spacing are different. The reference list is presented numerically and not alphabetically. This means that the references are numbered on the references list in the order in which they are cited in your paper.
The superscripted number within the text of the article corresponds to the number in the “References” list. Following is what the first five citations in the “References” list looks like taking into consideration the superscripted numbers listed within the in-text citation example typed above:
1. Bottomley JM. Geriatric Rehabilitation: A Textbook for the Physical Therapist Assistant. SLACK Inc.; 2010.
2. Nosse LJ, Friberg DG, Kovacek PR. Management and Supervisory Principles for Physical Therapists. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2010.
3. Institute for Career Research. Careers in Physical Therapy: Sports Medicine. Institute for Career Research; 2007. Accessed September 9, 2020. https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=201885&site=eds-live&scope=site
4. World Medical Association. Annual Report. Accessed September 9, 2020. https://www.wma.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Final-WMA-Annual-Report-1.pdf
5. Roswell M, Dushoff J, Winfree R. Male and female bees show large differences in floral preference. PLoS ONE. 2019;14(4):1-18. Published April 24, 2019. Accessed September 15, 2020. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0214909
*Reminder: the second line of your citations should be in line with the first. If the second line starts underneath the number, then you will have to move the line so that it starts just underneath the first.
Example of a book with one author:
Bottomley JM. Geriatric Rehabilitation: A Textbook for the Physical Therapist Assistant. SLACK Inc.; 2010.
In the above example, the author's last name and first initials were used followed by the title of the book in italics. The publisher is next followed by the year of publication.
Example of a book with two to six authors:
Nosse LJ, Friberg DG, Kovacek PR. Management and Supervisory Principles for Physical Therapists. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2010.
With books that have two to six authors, AMA wants those authors listed. In the above example, there are three authors total: "Nosse," "Friberg," and "Kovacek." The title is in italics followed by the publisher and then the year of publication.
Example of a book with more than six authors:
Bandy W, Morris T, Williams TH, et al. Therapeutic Exercise. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2008.
In the above example, the first three authors’ last names and first initials were used followed by “et al.” indicating that there are more authors who contributed to the book. The title of the book is italicized and stands on its own. The publisher comes next followed by the year of publication.
Example of a book published by a corporate author:
National Research Council. Beyond Six Billion: Forecasting the World’s Population. National Academy; 2000.
When the author is a corporation, you would still start the citation with the name of the corporation as you would with any author. In the case above, the corporate author is the National Research Council. In italics, following the corporate author’s name, is the title of the book: Beyond Six Billion: Forecasting the World's Population. The National Academy is the publisher of this source. The publication year is 2000.
The rules for a book with an editor are the same as if it was written by an author. In the example above, the editor’s last name and initials are in the place of where an author’s name would be, but followed by “ed.” The title in italics is next, followed by the name of the publisher, then the year. This book is also part of a series, therefore the series is identified at the end in italics.
Example of a selection within a collection:
Dolter KJ. Educational challenges: the crisis in quality. In Cowen PS, Moorhead S, eds. Current Issues in Nursing. 7th ed. Mosby Elsevier; 2006:68-85.
When using a single source from a collection of sources, be sure to use the title of that source as well as the title of the collection itself and the page range of that selection.
In the example above, the author who wrote the selected source from the collection is identified first. The title of the selected source is then identified next (note that there are no quotation marks around it, nor is it italicized). “In” is followed by the last names and first initials of the two editors of the collection – the “eds.” is what identifies them as editors. Next is the title of the collection presented in italics. It is important to note that this is the 7th edition of this collection which means that, if your reader looks at a first or fifth edition of this collection, the citation that you provided may appear flawed. The publisher is Mosby Elsevier and the publication date of this collection is from 2006. The page range of the selected source you choose from this collection is “68-85.”
Example of a government/organization report:
World Medical Association. Annual Report. Accessed September 9, 2020. https://www.wma.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Final-WMA-Annual-Report-1.pdf
In the example above, the World Medical Association is the organization who authored the report. The title is simply “Annual Report” as this is the World Medical Association’s latest annual report. The access date (when the report was discovered during research), is listed next followed by the report’s URL.
Example of a journal article taken from an online database:
Roswell M, Dushoff J, Winfree R. Male and female bees show large differences in floral preference. PLoS ONE. 2019;14(4):1-18. Published April 24, 2019. Accessed September 15, 2020. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0214909
In the example above, Roswell, Dushoff, and Winfree are the authors of the article. The title of the article is “Male and female bees show large differences in floral preference.” PLoS ONE is the abbreviated journal title for the Public Library of Science ONE. 2019 is the year that the article was published. 14 is the volume number. 4 is the issue number. This article can be found between pages 1 and 18. Both the published and access dates are included next, followed by the DOI.
A note about abbreviating journal titles: The following link will take you to PubMed where you can input the title of the journal and then the database will present the abbreviation: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/nlmcatalog/journals. IF the title is not found in the PubMed database, then you are free to use the title of the journal as presented by the database.
If a journal includes a supplement number or indicates that it is part of a series, note that in the citation.
Example of a journal article taken from CINAHL Plus:
Türk M, Yilmaz İ. A Rare Case of Multiple Severe Anaphylaxis Caused by Thyme, Black Pepper, Wasp and Honey. Asthma Allergy Immunology / Astim Allerji Immunoloji. 2019;17(2):115-117. doi:10.21911/aai.448
Example of a journal article taken from PubMed:
Shawen SB, Dworak T, Anderson RB. Return to Play Following Ankle Sprain and Lateral Ligament Reconstruction. Clin Sports Med. 2016;35(4):697-709. doi:10.1016/j.csm.2016.05.012
Example of a website:
Stem Cell Quick Reference. Learn Genetics/Genetic Science Learning Center. Updated January 25, 2010. Accessed August 25, 2010. http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/tech/stemcells/quickref/
In the example above, “Stem Cell Quick Reference” is the title of the webpage. “Learn Genetics/Genetic Science Learning Center” is the name of the website. The dates that it was updated and then accessed are next, followed by the website’s URL.
ZoteroBib is an online program which develops a bibliography with every source entered into it. As with every citation generator, it is not always reliable so be sure to double-check the accuracy of these citations.