This page contains reference examples for Instagram, including the following:

  1. Instagram photo
  2. Instagram video
  3. Instagram profile
  4. Instagram highlight

1. Instagram photo

Philadelphia Museum of Art [@philamuseum]. (2019, December 3). “It’s always wonderful to walk in and see my work in a collection where it’s loved, and where people are [Photograph]. Instagram.


  • Parenthetical citation: (Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2019)
  • Narrative citation: Philadelphia Museum of Art (2019)
  • Present the name of the individual or group author the same as you would for any other reference. Then provide the Instagram handle (beginning with the @ sign) in square brackets, followed by a period.
  • Provide the specific date of the post.
  • Provide the first 20 words of the post as the title. Count a URL, a hashtag, or an emoji as one word each, and include them in the reference if they fall within the first 20 words. Do not italicize emojis.
  • Include a description of the post (e.g., “[Photo],” “[Video]”) in square brackets after the title.
  • Credit Instagram as the site name in the source element and then provide the URL of the photo.
  • The format used for Instagram is also used for Twitter and TikTok.

2. Instagram video

APA Public Interest Directorate [@apapubint]. (2019, June 14). Male depression is serious, but many men try to ignore it or refuse treatment. Different men have different symptoms, but [Video]. Instagram.


  • Parenthetical citation: (APA Public Interest Directorate, 2019)
  • Narrative citation: APA Public Interest Directorate (2019)

3. Instagram profile

National Geographic [@natgeo]. (n.d.). IGTV [Instagram profile]. Instagram. Retrieved December 8, 2019, from

Swift, T. [@taylorswift]. (n.d.). Posts [Instagram profile]. Instagram. Retrieved January 9, 2020, from

United States Army [@usarmy]. (n.d.). Tagged [Instagram profile]. Instagram. Retrieved January 18, 2020, from


  • Parenthetical citations: (National Geographic, n.d.; Swift, n.d.; United States Army, n.d.)
  • Narrative citations: National Geographic (n.d.), Swift (n.d.), and United States Army (n.d.)
  • Use the name of the profile page you want to cite in the title element of the reference (e.g., “Posts,” “IGTV,” “Tagged”).
  • Include the description “[Instagram profile]” in square brackets.
  • Provide a retrieval date because the content is designed to change over time and is not archived.
  • Provide the URL of the page.

4. Instagram highlight

The New York Public Library [@nypl]. (n.d.). The raven [Highlight]. Instagram. Retrieved January 6, 2020, from


  • Parenthetical citation: (The New York Public Library, n.d.)
  • Narrative citation: (The New York Public Library (n.d.)
  • Include the description “[Highlight]” in square brackets.
  • Provide a retrieval date because the content is designed to change over time (users can add or remove stories from the highlight) and is not archived.
  • Provide the URL of the highlight.

Instagram references are covered in Section 10.15 of the APA Publication Manual, Seventh Edition

Last updated: March 2021Date created: February 2020