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Referencing: Theses and dissertations

Guide to APA 6th referencing style used at ECU

General format for end-text references

Dissertation or theses from a database:
Author A. A. (2006). Title of doctoral dissertation or master’s thesis (Doctoral dissertation or Master's thesis). Retrieved from Name of Database.
(Accession or Order No.)
Unpublished dissertation or theses:
Author A. A. (2006). Title of doctoral dissertation or master’s thesis (Unpublished Doctoral dissertation or Master's thesis). Name of Institution,

Dissertation or Thesis reference

Dissertation or Thesis Reference

Learn how to format references for doctoral dissertations or master's theses, including published and unpublished versions available from a variety of sources.


© 2016 American Psychological Association.

Examples showing how to reference theses and dissertations

Master's thesis

 (Aitken, 2001)

Aitken, J. P. (2001). Bioenergetics of the Australian giant cuttlefish (Sepia
apama)  (Master's thesis). Retrieved from ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. (AAT MQ66476).
Doctoral dissertation

 (Pendar, 1982)

Pendar, J. E. (1982). Undergraduate psychology: Factors influencing
decisions about college, curriculum and career (Doctoral dissertation). Dissertation Abstracts International. (University Microfilms No. 82-06, 181).
Unpublished dissertation or theses: Print
(Lock, 1993, p. 38)
Lock, G. (1993). The prevalence and sources of perceived occupational
stress among teachers in Western Australian Government metropolitan primary schools (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). Edith Cowan University, Mount Lawley, Australia.
Doctoral dissertation from an institutional database

(Sparrow, 2013)

Sparrow, H. (2013). Teaching excellence: An illusive goal in higher
education teaching and learning (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from
Note. This example is from the ECU Research Online Database
Doctoral dissertation online

 (Weber, 2003)

Weber, C. E. (2003). Making common cause?: Western and Middle
Eastern feminists in the international women’s movement, 1911-1948 (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from