How to cite a YouTube video in APA

To cite a YouTube video in APA Style, you include the video title (italicized), the channel that uploaded it, the upload date, and a link to the video.

APA YouTube citation example
Format Uploader. (Year, Month day). Title of the video [Video file]. Retrieved from url.
Reference list Scribbr. (2019, November 26). APA manual 7th edition: 17 most notable changes [Video file]. Retrieved from
In-text citation (Scribbr, 2019)

Note that the same format works for other video sites like Vimeo.

7th edition changes

In the 7th edition of APA, the description in square brackets is just “Video,” not “Video file,” and the words “Retrieved from” are omitted. Additionally, the name of the site is included before the URL:

Scribbr. (2019, November 26). APA manual 7th edition: 17 most notable changes [Video]. YouTube.

Where to find citation information for a YouTube video

The information you’ll need for your citation is easy to locate on YouTube – it’s located just below the video:

Where to find information for an APA YouTube citation

Authors and channel names

The “author” of a YouTube video is not necessarily the person or group who created the video. Instead, APA requires you to list the uploader of the video as author. This is to avoid confusion and make it easier for the reader to locate the video.

If the uploader is an individual whose real name is known and is different from their channel name, both should be included. The real name is written in the standard format, while the channel name follows in square brackets and is written exactly as it is on YouTube, retaining any unconventional capitalization or spacing:

Fantano, A. [theneedledrop]. (2019, December 21). Top 50 albums of 2019 [Video file]. Retrieved from

If the author’s real name is unknown or the uploader is not an individual, the screen name is included alone, with no brackets:

University of Oxford. (2019, December 15). Could we run the UK on carbon-free energy? [Video file]. Retrieved from

Where the channel name is the same as the author’s real name, it only needs to be written once:

Cutts, S. (2017, November 24). Happiness [Video file]. Retrieved from

In-text citations for YouTube videos

For an in-text citation of a YouTube video, use whichever name appears first in the full citation, whether that’s a real name or a channel name:

(Fantano, 2019)
(University of Oxford, 2019)

When you quote or refer to a specific part of a video, include a timestamp pointing to the relevant moment in the video:

(University of Oxford, 2019, 0:29)

How to cite a YouTube channel

Sometimes you might need to cite a whole channel instead of a single video, as when you’re discussing a channel’s content in general.

In this case, don’t include the year the channel was created – just use “n.d.” (no date) as it’s the current content of the channel that’s relevant. Write “YouTube channel” instead of “Video file” in the square brackets.

University of Oxford. (n.d.). Home [YouTube channel]. Retrieved from

“Home” refers to the homepage of the channel; if you’re citing something else like the videos or playlists tab, replace accordingly:

University of Oxford. (n.d.). Videos [YouTube channel]. Retrieved from

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Jack Caulfield

Jack is a Brit based in Amsterdam, with an MA in comparative literature. He writes and edits for Scribbr, and reads a lot of books in his spare time.

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