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APA Style 7th ed Citation Guide - Langara Library

Citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers

In the spirit of reconciliation, Indigenous scholar and instruction librarian Lorisia MacLeod, NorQuest College Indigenous Student Centre staff, and NorQuest's Elder in Residence have developed templates to help researchers cite Indigenous Knowledge Keepers in a good way. 

Unlike other personal communications, Elders and Knowledge Keepers are cited in-text and in the reference list.

The in-text citation should follow the same guidelines noted for a paraphrase or direct quote:

Name of Elder/Knowledge Keeper with year of communication.

Langara's Elder in Residence, Mary Jane Joe, described the nature of the... (2020)


Last name, First initial., Nation/Community. Treaty Territory if applicable. Where they live if applicable. Topic/subject of communication if applicable. personal communication. Month Date, Year.

Joe, M. J. Ntle'kepmx Nation. Lives in Musqueam/Vancouver. Oral teaching. personal communication. April 4, 2020.

Note: If you would like to approach an Elder or Knowledge Keeper for teachings, remember to follow protocol. If you are unsure what their protocol is, please ask them ahead of time.

Source: With gratitude, these examples are adapted from the APA 7th ed. templates generously provided by Lorisia MacLeod and NorQuest College Indigenous Student Centre.