APA TV Show Citation – A Comprehensive Guide

16.06.23 Other examples Time to read: 2min

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This article focuses on the guidelines established by the American Psychological Association for citing television shows in academic writing. While television shows are not traditional academic sources, they can be relevant in various research contexts. Given the increasing integration of multimedia sources in scholarly work, it’s essential to know how to cite such non-traditional sources correctly to maintain academic integrity and allow readers to locate the original material.

In a nutshell: APA TV show citation

  • The APA citation style is used for both in-text citations and references.
  • When citing TV shows, it is important to give proper attention to the authors and production companies involved.
  • To clarify these principles, we give APA examples to illustrate these.
  • We will also provide answers to common inquiries regarding citing APA TV shows.

Definition: APA TV show citation

When referencing TV shows in academic writing, it is important to follow the APA TV show citation guidelines established by the American Psychological Association. This ensures proper attribution of the original source and upholds academic integrity by preventing plagiarism.

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APA TV show citation format

In-text citation:

  • (Series Name, Year)
  • The year refers to the year of the episode’s original release.

Reference entry:

  • Producer(s) Last Name, First Initial(s). (Producer). (Year). Title of TV series [TV series]. Production Company.

Examples of APA TV show citation

  • (The Office, 2005)
  • (Friends, 1994)
  • Daniels, G. (Producer). (2005-2013). The Office [TV series]. NBC.
  • Crane, D., Kauffman, M., & Bright, K. (Producers). (1994-2004). Friends [TV series]. NBC

Citing an entire TV series

When citing an entire TV series, the year should include the range from the first year to the last year of the show.

Authors & production companies

In APA TV show citations, the author is often the producer of the show. If there are multiple producers, list them in the order they appear on the show’s credits. If a production company has overall responsibility for the show, include it as the publisher after the show’s title.


  • Daniels, G. (Producer). (2005-2013). The Office [TV series]. NBC.


  • Smith, J., & Johnson, K. (Producers). (2020). The insightful show [TV series]. Insightful Productions.
  • Insightful Productions. (2020). The insightful show [TV series].


For a specific episode, the screenwriter and director replace the producer as authors, and the title of the episode is included:

  • Writer(s). (Year). Title of episode (Season number, Episode number) [Episode of the series Title of series]. In Producer’s name (Producer), Title of series. Production Company.

When the producer is unknown, start the citation with the title of the show:

  • Title of TV series (Year). [TV series]. Production Company.

When seen online, the URL of the site where the show was streamed should be included:

  • Producer(s). (Year). Title of series [TV series]. Production Company; URL