Example APA Style: Personal communication

Conversations belong, according to the APA Style, to ‘personal communication’. Examples are: e-mails, letters, phone calls, personal conversations, interviews, questionnaires etc. A source that counts as personal communication is not recorded in the reference list, because the reader can’t check it.

That means you will refer to the personal communication in your text but won’t record it in the reference list. You can make a list with all names and data of your interviews in the appendix.

Personal communication
APA-format Don’t record in reference list
In reference list Don’t record in reference list
In the text
  • In a conversation with the floor manager … (P. Bankers, personal communication, March 3, 2015).
  • P. Bankers (personal communication, March 3, 2015) suggested that the problem could be solved by … .

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Koen Driessen

Koen has written multiple theses and founded, together with Bas and Richard, the thesis editing company Scribbr in 2012.

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