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Sociology Class Supplement: Direct Quotations

Helpful Links for Block Quotations

Quotations in General

Use a direct quote when the concept is difficult to paraphrase, the author's wording is of utmost importance, or the quotation is needed to provide authority on the topic. USE DIRECT QUOTES ONLY WHEN ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY.


  • Use this format for basic citation in a block quotation: (Last name, year, p. #). If quote spans across two pages: (Last name, year, pp.#)


  • If the source does not have page numbers, but does have paragraph numbers, use this format: (Last name, year, para. #).


  • If the source does not have page or paragraph numbers but does have headings, use the heading and then the number of paragraph underneath that heading: (Last name, year, "Heading Title," para. #). The heading may be shortened if it is too long.

Short Quotations - fewer than 40 words

  • Incorporate into text.
  • Enclose quote in double quotation marks.
  • Do not insert additional punctuation before or after quotation marks.


As far as fantastical ideas, "the extent to which a real idea conforms to its archetype determines its adequacy" (Tsanoff, 1953, p. 336).


Block Quotation

If a quotation is more than 40 words, use a BLOCK QUOTATION.

  • Do NOT use quotations marks in a block quotation.
  • Indent 1/2 inch (0.5) from the current left margin.
  • Double space the quotation. Do not add an extra space before or after it.
  • Cite the source at the end of the paragraph - on the same line if room permits.


The defintion of spectrum by the National Institute of Health (n.d.) further identifies Autistic Spectrum Disorder:

The term “spectrum” refers to the wide range of symptoms, skills, and levels of impairment or disability that children with ASD can have. Some children are mildly impaired by their symptoms, while others are severely disabled. The latest edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) no longer includes Asperger’s syndrome; the characteristics of Asperger’s syndrome are included within the broader category of ASD. ("What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?," para. 2)



APA Publication Manual, 7th Edition (2019) was consulted in creating this guide.