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Graphic Design: APA Images, tables & figures

A career in graphic/digital design involves bringing ideas, stories and concepts to life through engaging visual interpretation.

Referencing visual media

The difference between images, figures and tables:

  • Figures include charts, graphs, drawings, photographs, and other kinds of illustrations.
  • Images are a type of figure. They are visual depicitions—e.g., photographs or computer-generated graphics.
  • Tables present numerical values/data or text in columns and rows.

At times the distinction between figures and tables can be unclear. Remember, tables are almost always displayed in column-row format. Any other illustration is referred to as a figure.

Referencing images, tables, and figures in your assignments

For undergraduate assignments

Cite images, tables, and figures as you would when quoting or paraphrasing written material. Include (author, date, page number) in a caption below the figure/table, and ensure this corresponds to a full reference list entry.

For postgraduate assignments or work intended for publication

APA requires images, figures, and tables reproduced or adapted for use in your work to be referenced fully and accompanied by a copyright/permission statement. See the Publication Manual  (7th ed.), APA for postgrads, or your Liaison Librarian for guidance.

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