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Referencing style - APA 7th: Images and Copyright

A guide to using the APA 7th edition referencing system for in-text citations and reference lists.

Copyright attribution for images

When using an image in your work you should consider if there is a copyright license associated with it and if so, whether attribution is required.  Within APA the use of an image is treated as a type of figure; as such you need to include a figure number, title and note.  The copyright attribution is included in the 'Note' area after the description of the significance of the image to your work.   

See the APA Style Blog area on Clip Art or Stock Image References for further details and examples. 

See the UWA Library Images and Videos Guide for more information about using images in your work and where to find free to use images. 


Copied image - no attribution required

If your image or clip art is your own - or it has a Creative Commons no attribution required copyright license.

You don't need to add a copyright attribution to your Notes area when you use it as a figure in your work.  

This image from Pixabay has a free for commercial use and no attribution required copyright licence associated with it. 


You also don't need to provide an end-text reference for this source. 



Figure 1  

Numbats Need Tree Canopies

Note. Numbats are susceptible to cat and fox predation if they do not have sufficient tree canopy to avoid having to go to the ground. 

Copied image - attribution required

If the image or clip art has come from a source that requires attribution then you will need to ensure a copyright attribution or acknowledgment is included in your notes, below your description of the figure. 


Because this image has a Creative Commons licence that requires attribution you must also create a citation for it in your end-text reference. 

For this image the end text reference will be: 

Denisbin. (2012). Pilotus Flower [Photograph]. Flickr. 


Figure 2 

Pilotus Flowers (Family Amaranthaceae)

Note.  The widespread distribution of the Pilotus flower and its spreading habit make it a favourite in landscape gardening.   From: Pilotus Flower [Photograph], by denisbin, 2012, Flickr CC BY-ND 2.0



If your work is not for your personal educational purposes and will be published or shared online, then you may need to seek permission to use an image or clip art prior to publication. 

See the UWA Copyright and Publishing webpage for further advice.  

Please note: If you would like information on the manner in which you can reference AI generated art, that you have produced yourself, or AI art from a published source, please click here for guidance. 



 Except for logos, Canva designs or where otherwise indicated, content in this guide is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International Licence.