How to Cite an Interview in APA

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Interviews can be a extremely useful sources of information on almost any topic. Whether it be in the form of a video or an online article, this helpful guide will show you how to cite interviews for your APA-style research paper. All citations follow APA 7th edition.

Guide Overview

Here’s a run-through of everything this page includes:

Citing a personal interview

APA reference lists only include works that can be found by the reader. As a personal interview is not published or “findable,” it should not be included in an APA reference list. Instead, a personal interview should be referenced as a parenthetical citation.

Parenthetical citation example:

(J. Smith, personal communication, May 17, 2008).

Any personal interview conducted via the following methods (and that are unpublished) can be considered personal communication:

  • in-person interview
  • email
  • phone interview
  • text messages
  • online chats
  • memos
  • unrecorded lectures

If you would like to include a personal interview as part of your APA reference list, then include the interviewee, the date of the interview, and the type of interview.

Interview Citation Structure:

Last name, F. (Year, Month date). Personal communication [Communication type].

Interview Citation Example:

Cloyd, A. (2014, July 29). Personal communication [Personal interview].


Citing a published interview

If an interview is published, cite the source as you would normally. If the interview is published as a YouTube video, use the APA format for citing a video. If it was an interview in a printed book, use APA format for citing a book.
Within the reference list entry, you do not need to indicate who the interviewee is. However, in the writing around your in-text citations, make sure that you mention who the interviewee was. Include the location of where the quote came from, e.g., page number (p. 22), paragraph number (para. 12), timestamp (1:42), etc.

Interview published as an online article

In-text citation, parenthetical example:
“You forget they have a disability and it’s not until you take a step back and you talk to them… that you realize the stories they have,” said Ellie Simmonds about the Paralympics (MacInnes, 2021, para.1).
In-text citation, narrative example:
MacInnes’ (2021) interview with Paralympic athlete Ellie Simmonds revealed that the gold medalist feels more pressure now that she’s older.
Reference list entry example:

MacInnes, P. (2021, August 24). Ellie Simmonds: ‘I’ve found the expectations harder as I’ve got older.’ The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2021/aug/24/ellie-simmonds-expectations-tokyo-paralympics-interview


Interview published as YouTube video

In-text citation, parenthetical example:

When asked how tall he is, Igor Vovkovinsky replied that he is “7 feet and 8.33 inches tall” (60 Minutes Australia, 2018, 0:57).

In-text citation, narrative example:

When Conan O’brien (2021) interviewed comedian Tig Notaro, she joked that she was in a sequel to the movie Army of the Dead.

Reference list entry examples:

60 Minutes Australia. (2018, June 23). Meet the tallest man in the world [Video]. YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gjG6qIfoMeI

O’Brien, C. [Team Coco]. (2021, June 11). Tig Notaro full interview – CONAN on TBS [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=imMsszmCdr4 


Interview from a research participant

Quotations from a research participant are from your original research; therefore, they are not included in the reference list or treated as personal communications. When citing a direct quotation from a participant’s interview, indicate in the text that the quotation is coming from a participant.

In-text example:

Participant “Steven” described his experience at the company as “difficult but rewarding.”


Radio interview recording in a digital archive

When referencing an interview that is housed in a digital or a physical archive, you must credit the interviewee as the author.

In-text citation, parenthetical example:

In her interview, Stephen Krashen explained, “The important step in the art of writing is knowing what you are writing about” (Krashen, 1983, 1:17).

In-text citation, narrative example:

During an interview, Krashen (1983) discussed the importance of preparation before beginning writing.

Reference list entry examples:

Krashen, S. (1983, May 4). The basics of writing [Interview]. USC Archive; University of Southern California. https://libraries.usc.edu/locations/special-collections-department/university-archives


Here’s a quick video overview of how to cite an interview in APA:


Troubleshooting

Solution #1: How to cite a text message or personal email in APA

Personal emails or text messages are considered forms of personal communication. Since they are unpublished and cannot be accessed by anyone else, they should not be included on the reference sheet. An in-text citation should be made indicating that it was obtained through personal communication, including the person’s name and the date that the communication happened.

Structure:

(Email writer’s first initial and last name, personal communication, date message was received in Month Day, Year format)

Example:

(A. Washington, personal communication, December 10, 2021)


Solution #2: How to cite a professor’s lecture you attended in-person in APA

Unless the lecture has been recorded and published, notes and quotes collected from a lecture are considered forms of personal communication. Therefore, it does not need to be included on your reference sheet according to APA guidelines. An in-text citation should be made indicating that the information or quote was obtained through personal communication, the date it was retrieved, and the professor’s name.

In-text citation structure & example:

(Professor’s first initial and last name, personal communication, date of lecture in Month Day, Year format)

(P. Espinoza, personal communication, April 30, 2019)

If it is required to cite the lecture in the reference sheet, the entry needs to include the same information.

Reference list entry structure & example:

Professor’s last name, first initial. (Year, Month Day). Personal Communication. [Lecture]

Espinoza, P. (2019, April 30). Personal Communication. [Lecture]

If the lecture has been recorded and is available online, it must be included in the reference sheet and is no longer considered a form of personal communication.

Reference list entry structure & example:

Professor’s last name, first initial. (Year, Month Day). Lecture name. Source of publication. URL.

Espinoza, P. (2019, April 30). Mesopotamia. University of Chegg. https://example.website.here.

 

 

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How do I cite an online interview in APA style?

To cite an online interview, you need to know what format the interview is in. Was it an online video? An online article? A podcast? Whatever the medium (video, article, podcast, etc.), create a citation as you would normally for that medium.  The author is usually the interviewer’s (or publishing company’s) name.

In-text citation template and examples:

When citing information from an interview, make it clear who the interviewee (the person being interviewed) was. If you are citing a quote, include the location of where the quote came from. That could be a page number (p. 22), paragraph number (para. 12), or timestamp (1:42).

Here is an example of a video interview on YouTube.

Narrative:

Author Surname or Organization (Publication Year)

Manufacturing Intellect (2020) published a video of Romney Wheeler interviewing Bertrand Russell.

Parenthetical:

(Author Surname, Publication Year)

In one interview with Romeny Wheely, the philosopher Bertrand Russell said, “I wanted to know whether there is any truth in realities known, and I thought if there was any, it’s probably in mathematics” (Manufacturing Intellect, 2020, 8:58-9:05).

Reference list entry template and example:

Author Name. (Date published). Title of the video [Format]. Video Site Name. URL

Manufacturing Intellect. (2020, July 10). A conversation with Bertrand Russell [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xL_sMXfzzyA (Original work broadcast in 1952)

How do I do an in-text citation for an interview in APA?

An interview is a talk or an exchange of information via electronic media. An interview can be published or unpublished, depending upon the type and nature of the interview. Interviews can be any of the following types:

  • Published interview
  • Personal interview
  • Interview of participants in a study

Published interview

Interviews appearing in newspapers, magazines, television programs, YouTube videos, podcasts, and radio broadcasting will fall under this category. Here is a template and an example of how a published interview is cited in the text:

Template:

(Author Last Name, date of interview)

Example:

(Fuller, 2018)

Personal interview

If you get details through emails or phone calls to make the statement in your paper effective, you need to cite them as “personal communication,” since they cannot be published. A few examples of interviews that need to be treated as personal communications include:

  • in-person interview
  • interview on the telephone
  • text messages or emails
  • online chats

Template:

(Author Last Name, personal communication, date of interview)

Example:

(Sethusankar, personal communication, December 2, 2016)

Interview of participants in a study

If you interview your participants as a part of your study, APA style doesn’t require you to cite them. However, follow the APA guidelines on how to present the interview of participants.