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APA 7th Referencing Guide

Generative Artificial Intelligence (GenAI) Tools (e.g. ChatGPT)

This advice is as of 12th May, 2023

Generative AI tools can be used to create content such as text, images or music. For more information, read about the use of generative AI tools for your studies on the  Academic Integrity and Turnitin page.

If you have used a generative AI tool in your assessment, you need to acknowledge this use as part of your commitment to academic integrity at SCU. Discuss with your Unit Assessor if you are not sure about how you can use generative AI tools in your studies.

Quoting or referring to ChatGPT’s text is like sharing an algorithm’s output and the ‘author’ of the algorithm needs to be credited with a reference list entry and the corresponding in-text citation. It is recommended to include the full transcript in an appendix.


When given a follow up prompt of "what is a...?" the ChatGPT-generated text indicated "abc and xyz" (OpenAI, 2023; see Appendix A for the full transcript).

Generative AI tools are an emerging technology, so this advice on how to reference your use of a generative AI tool may change. Keep checking this guide for updated information.

AI generated text

  • Some units require you to add a brief statement, saying whether or not you have used AI tools in the writing or editing of your assignments. Tools such as ChatGPT, Grammarly, Quilbot etc may be picked up as AI. If you have used AI tools to help produce information, create a paraphrase, or you have quoted from ChatGPT or any other software, you need to include an in-text citation and reference list entry.
  • If you have only used tools such as Grammarly for assistance with grammatical errors a brief acknowledgment statement only may be necessary. An in-text citation and including a reference list entry isn't required.

The following examples are adapted from the APA templates for software. 

Elements of the reference
Author of AI model. (Year of AI model used). Name of AI model (Version of AI model used) [Type or description of AI model]. URL 
In-text citation
(OpenAI, 2023; see Appendix B for the full transcript) OR (OpenAI, 2023)
Reference list
OpenAI. (2023). ChatGPT (Mar 14 version) [Large language model]. 
Grammarly. (2024). Grammarly (Version [Large language model].

The full transcript of prompt(s) and response(s) should be included in an appendix.  

AI generated images

Elements of the reference
Author of AI model. (Year of AI model used). Name of AI model (Version of AI model used) [Type or description of AI model]. URL 
Elements of in-text display:

Figure X

Title (if applicable)


Note. The image was generated by - Name of AI model (Author of AI model, Year) - with the prompt: “Prompt”. 

In-text display:

Figure 1


Note. The image was generated by Midjourney (Midjourney, 2023) with the prompt “Robot holding a flower."

Reference list
Midjourney. (2023). Midjourney (V5) [Text-to-image model]. 

Test your GenAI referencing knowledge - APA7