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How To Reference Diagram In Essay

What should be included:

Where you include any images in your essay, thesis or work, you can describe them as figures. You will need to include them in reference.

  • Figures need to be numbered e.g. Figure 1. or Fig.1 or Figs. 1,2,3. and captioned (described),  place caption directly under the image.
  • Number all Figures in the order they first appear in the text. 
  • Figures must be referred to in the main body of the text.
  • Refer to them in the text by their number.

In-text citations should include the author/artist/designer and date.

The Reference List should include the author/artist/designer, date, title, format, publisher, viewed date and <URL>.

Example image with caption:

Figure 1: RMIT buildings - Brunswick Campus by Margund Sallowsky, RMIT University, 2006.


Figure 1. (Margund Sallowksy 2006) captures the inventive building design at Brunswick Campus

Reference list:

Sallowksy, M 2006, RMIT buildings - Brunswick Campus, digital image, RMIT University, viewed 12 January 2012, <http://mams.rmit.edu.au/weixddjbxxs81.JPG>.


Figures and tables

APA does not provide precise rules for citing figures and tables. These guidelines are designed for use with data from sources such A.C. Nielsen, Passport GMID and Statistics New Zealand as well as from books and journal articles.


There are separate rules for figures and tables.

  • Figures refer to graphs, flow charts, maps, drawings, photos, etc.
  • Tables refer to numerical values or text displayed in orderly columns and rows

General rules

  • All Figures and Tables should be numbered (e.g. Table 1, Table 2 etc.) and referred to in your document as Table 1 or Figure 1.
  • Each table should have an individual title. Each word in the title should be italicized and capitalized except with, of, in, and, etc.
  • All tables should be referenced in the text of the paper and in the reference list.
  • UC Library database licence agreements allow students to use images in assignments. Statistics NZ also allows this. State copyright and also write: Reprinted with permission (see below).

Tables reproduced in your text

Table 1. Sales of Vitamins/Mineral & Herbal Supplements

Note. Retrieved from ACNielsen Market Information Digest New Zealand. Copyright 2011 by the Nielsen Company. Reprinted with permission.

In-text citation

As shown in Table 1, vitamins, minerals & herbal supplements sales ...

Reference list

The Nielsen Company. (2011). Sales of vitamins/minerals & herbal supplements in New Zealand, 11 September 2010 - 11 September 2011 [Table]. Retrieved from ACNielsen Market Information Digest New Zealand.

Figures reproduced in your text

Figure 1. Youth unemployment rate vs. total unemployment rate: 2006-2011. Youth unemployment rate refers to the unemployed population aged 15-24 years old. Copyright 2013 by Euromonitor International. Reprinted with permission.

In-text citation

As Figure 1 shows, youth unemployment rate has risen from 9.9% to 17.7%...

Reference list

Euromonitor International. (2013). Youth unemployment rate vs. total unemployment rate: 2006-2011 [Graph]. Retrieved from http://www.portal.euromonitor.com

Figure or table referred to (not reproduced)

In-text citation

... sales of apparel (Euromonitor International, 2012).

Reference list

Euromonitor International. (2012). Sales of apparel by category, % volume growth 2006-2011 [Table]. In Apparel in China industry overview. Retrieved from http://www.portal.euromonitor.com

Creating your own figure or table

If you compile your own table or figure from data retrieved from another source (e.g. Statistics New Zealand), write ‘Adapted from’

Table 2. Median Weekly Household Income in the Auckland Region


Note: Adapted from http://nzdotstat.stats.govt.nz/wbos/Index.aspx?DataSetCode=TABLECODE2287. Copyright 2013 by Statistics New Zealand. Reprinted with permission.

In-text citation

... the median weekly household income in Auckland (see Table 2).

Reference list

Statistics New Zealand. (2013). Median Weekly Household Income in the Auckland Region, 2008-2012 [Table]. Retrieved from http://nzdotstat.stats.govt.nz/wbos/Index.aspx?DataSetCode=TABLECODE2287


  • If you create a table or figure from more than one source, list all the sources in your note and include them all in your reference list. If you have created an original table or figure from your own data, then state yourself as the copyright owner.

Figure or table from a book or journal article

For material reproduced from a journal article

Note. From “Best management practices by age” by D. Adams and B. Matthies, 2010, Journal of Management, 14(3), p. 62.

For material reproduced from a book

Note. From Management 101, p. 11, by M. Adams, 2009, Paris: Cafe College Press

See also AUT APA 6th Images.

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