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Physician Assistant Resources: AMA Citations


Citation Management Tools

AMA 11 General Rules

Authors (3.7)

One author: Last Name AA.

Two authors: Author AA,  Author BB.

Six authors: Author AA, Author BB, Author CC, Author DD, Author EE, Author FF. 

More than six authors: Author AA, Author BB, Author CC, et al.

One author for or and a groupAuthor AA; Laser ROP Study Group. 

More than six authors for or and a group: Author AA, Author BB, Author CC, et al; Laser ROP Study Group. 

In-Text Citations (3.6)

  • Use in-text citations for any information that didn't come directly from your own head. This could be a direct quote, or when you have summarized or paraphrased an idea from another source.
  • AMA style uses superscript Arabic numerals for text, tables, and figures. Each source is numbered consecutively, referring to the sources numbered in the reference list.
  • The superscripts should be inserted directly after a fact, concept, or quotation being cited.
  • For direct quotes, the superscript should be inserted directly after the quotation mark. (i.e. "The basic ideas of a 'living food' or 'raw food' diets are consuming all or primarily uncooked foods."4)
  • Superscripts should go after periods and commas, and before colons and semicolons.

Examples of using superscripts: 

Smith and Jackson3 reported...

This drug is used to treat hepatitis.22

As reported previously,1,3-8,19 (note: use a hyphen for multiple consecutive sources cited, and a comma for non-consecutive sources)

These patients showed no sign of malignancies.3(p21),9 (note: if the author wishes to cite page numbers from a reference source, the page numbers are included in the superscript)

Gylswyk5(pp3,5),9 reported 15 cases in which drowsiness occurred. (note: a superscript may include more than one page number)

Parenthetical Citations

Parenthetical citations should be limited to sources not yet accepted for publication, personal communication, news articles, and obituaries. The citation format is similar to that of the citations in the reference list. However, in the text (1) the author(s) may not be named, (2) the title may not be given, (3) the name of the journal is abbreviated only when enclosed in parenthesis, and (4) inclusive page numbers are given.

Example of parenthetical citations:

Wiese et al. recently reported that an extract from the fruit of the prickly pear cactus had a moderate effect on reducing the symptoms of the alcohol hangover (Arch Intern Med. 2004;164[12]:1334-1340).

Reference List (3.2)

  • The References page is a list of the works you used to write your paper (note: references not yet accepted for publication or personal communication should not be included in the reference list, but rather included parenthetically in the text)
  • References are numbered consecutively with numerals in the same order in which they are cited in the text.

Formatting Your Paper

  • The AMA Manual of Style does not explicitly state instructions for formatting a paper. For guidance on formatting  margins, line spacing, fonts, indents, etc. please check with your instructor.
  • Section 2.8 of the manual recommends using a consistent style for headings.
  • Many scientific studies follow the IMRAD model (Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion), but not all papers will conform to this model.

AMA 11 Style Guide & Resources