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AMA Citation Guide: In-text Citations

How to Cite:


  • Sources are cited in the text in numerical order using superscript Arabic numerals.
  • The superscript numerals are placed after quotation marks, commas, and periods, but before semicolons and colons.
  • Sources are placed in the reference list in the numerical order that they are cited in the text. 


Please refer to the following1,7: (NOTE: two sources are cited and placed before the colon)

As in previous discussion,2,9-11,16 (NOTE: multiple sources cited, use hyphen when 3 or more consecutive numbers are cited)

The study's3 findings did not...

A review of the regulations were completed by the USDA.22

Specific page numbers within a source can also be cited. This is often done when referring to the same source more than once. This helps aid the reader in locating the exact location of your reference. To do this, place the page reference in parentheses after the superscript numeral:

Dr. Porter's study5(p101) disproves Ms. Bonnell's findings3(p34),11(p9)...

Avoiding Plagiarism

Cite when you:

  • Use a direct quotation, even if it is in quotation marks.
  • Use facts that are not common knowledge.
  • Paraphrase the author’s ideas.
  • Have changed some of the author’s words (i.e., used synonyms).
  • Use the key words or phrases from the author.
  • Mention the author’s name in your sentence.
  • Have written a sentence that mostly consists of your own thoughts, but you have made a reference to another author’s ideas.

When in doubt, CITE!