APA 7th Edition is the most commonly used referencing style here at the University of Portsmouth. Below you will find general guidance on how to reference and cite using APA 7th Edition, as well as examples for the specific sources you are likely to use in your assignments. 

Your department or lecturer may prefer you to reference sources differently from the guidance given here. Always follow the requirements of your department or lecturer. 

External visitors are welcome to use this guide, but note that your institution's requirements may differ from those suggested here.

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This advice was updated 1st November 2023

Artificial Intelligence (AI)I, such as ChatGPT, can be used as a tool to help assist and inform the initial development of your writing and other outputs but it is not a replacement for your own critical thinking and analysis. Your final assignment must be your own work. You should never just copy from an AI generator in whole or in part, and you should clearly indicate where AI-generated material has been used.

Content generated by AI software is an evolving field, and APA's official advice is still being developed and debated. The following advice is interim advice and is subject to change. Please check before submitting your work to see if the advice here has altered.

APA now advises that ChatGPT should be referenced in the same way as an algorithm and should be included in the reference list using the format below:  

ChatGPT conversation using a shared link 

ChatGPT now allows users to generate a unique shared link to a ChatGPT conversation, which can be included in your reference. ChatGPT provide guidance on how to generate a shared link. Please read this information carefully, especially the sections on how your conversation can be used by others. As your conversation will be available to anyone with the shared link you should not share sensitive or personal information. 

A shared link is a snapshot of that entire conversation up to the point it is being shared. This means if there are many prompts/responses in the conversation, all of them will be included. Once a shared link is created for a specific conversation or message, it will not include any future messages added to the conversation after the link was generated. This means that if you continue the conversation after creating the shared link, those additional messages will not be visible through the shared link unless you delete the link and regenerate it. 

If you delete the ChatGPT conversation, the shared link in your reference will no longer work. 

You should use a shared link in your reference unless your conversation includes sensitive information.

Reference List 

Author. (Year of the version used.). Title (Version number) [Large language model]. Shared Link 

OpenAI. (2023, October 23). ChatGPT (Sep 25, 2023 version) [Large language model]. https://chat.openai.com/share/568554f1-5198-4ee7-af86-8ef3f7d364dc

The version number/date can be found at the bottom of the ChatGPT screen.

In-text Citation 

You should include the prompt you used in your text to provide your reader with additional context. 

When prompted with “What are the themes in Jane Eyre?” the ChatGPT-generated text indicated that morality is a major theme suggesting that "Jane's strong moral compass and her commitment to living according to her principles are evident throughout the novel" (OpenAI, 2023).


ChatGPT conversation without a shared link

If your ChatGPT conversation contains sensitive information that you are not happy to share via a public link you can use the homepage URL instead.

Reference List 

Author. (Year of the version used.). Title (Version number) [Large language model]. URL 

OpenAI. (2023). ChatGPT (Sep 25, 2023 version) [Large language model]. https://chat.openai.com

In-text Citation 

If you are not linking to the text of your ChatGPT conversation via a shared link then APA suggests including the full ChatGPT transcript as an Appendix to your assignment. Please check with your lecturer to see if they wish you to do this. 

ChatGPT was prompted to "determine three prominent themes in Emily Dickinson's poetry", and identified "love, death and religion" as the most touched on themes of her work (OpenAI, 2023; see Appendix A for the full transcript).