Thursday January 28th, 2021

Welcome back Grade 12 biology students! Your slide presentation needs visuals which in turn need to be cited in APA. In this situation you need to reference the source of the visual and unfortunately stating Google Images as the source will not suffice.

Simply put, you may NOT cite Google. It is a search engine, not a source. You have to dig deeper to cite images that are found through Google.

Here are a couple of short videos that may help you in this process, both of which I have permission to share with you.

The first one is valuable in that it shows where to find images that are free to be used in Google.

The second one shows how to cite images that may or may not have all of the information that you need.

These videos give slightly different information in terms of the placement of the date. The first video shows the date placed immediately after the creator’s name and no mention of the type of image.

The second video shows the creator’s name, the type of work and then the date.

Which one is accurate? The main difference is that the creator’s role (photographer) is mentioned in the second video as well as the type of image [photograph].

We’ll visit the Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue to see what they have to say.

Here is the format:

Creator’s last name, Creator’s first name initial. (Year of publication). Title of image [type of image]. Source. URL (hyperlink removed)

Here is an actual example:

Ryan, S. (2019). [Sea smoke on Lake Michigan] [Photograph] New York Times

Note: if the image does not have a title, describe the image and put that description in square brackets.

Brock University and Simon Fraser University also have included great examples of citing images that you can reference as well.

From Brock U.
7.2: Using Images on Slides

If you use images, such as photographs or clipart, on your slides, you should also credit the source of the image. Do not reproduce images without permission. There are sources for clipart and images that are “public use” according to Creative Commons licensing such as:

Photographs are treated as figures in APA Style. Therefore, the citation for the source of the image is included as a footnote in the figure caption underneath the photograph which includes the figure number and a description. The source of the image obtained is attributed using the following model:

Figure 1. Blah blah blah. From Title of Image, by Author, Year. Retrieved from URL.

Infinite loop sculpture

Figure 1. Photograph of a sculpture in Cupertino, California. From Infinite Loop II by Kurafire (2007, January 3).  Retrieved from

Another option for citing image sources is to create a separate slide titled “Photo credits” or “Image Sources”. For more assistance on the various ways to cite images in presentations (but not necessarily in APA format), see:

For more assistance in creating figures in APA Style, see the following sections & pages of the Publication Manual, 6th edition:

  • 2.12 Footnotes (pages 37 -38)
  • 5.20 – 5.25 Figures (pages 150 – 167)

Now that you know what you’re looking for, there are lots of places to look for images or illustrations for this assignment that are covered by Creative Common licenses which means that you can share and edit the material as long as you give appropriate credit.

Pixabay, Pexels, Unsplash, Wikimedia Commons, ScienceImage, Public Health Image Library, Britannica Image Quest in the Virtual Library.