Writing an academic paper means you’ll have to consult multiple books, journals, articles, and
other sources to conduct proper research. Therefore, whenever you come across an idea or
information that you need to incorporate in your work, it is essential to acknowledge the
This acknowledgment of the contribution of other writers helps to uphold their intellectual
property rights. As a student, you’ll have to draw on the ideas of multiple scholars and writers
to provide support or evidence behind a specific idea that you want to emphasize.
Therefore, adding the correct referencing substantiates your claims and shows off your knowledge of the
What Are The Common Referencing Styles?
There’s no shortage of styles that you can use to provide references in your work. Sometimes,
these depend on the subject of the paper. For example,
APA referencing style – You’ll see occur commonly in subjects like Education,
Sciences and Psychology
AGLC referencing style – This is a footnote citation style for identifying legal
MLA referencing style – This is a standard format in Humanities
Chicago referencing style – Business, History, and Fine Arts use this style most
Each of these styles is unique and follows specific rules that set them apart. Hence, the mark
of a good reference is to follow these Aglc referencing formats correctly without mixing
The Harvard Citation Style
The Harvard style of reference is another widespread format that follows the author-date
system in two places: the in-text citations and reference list at the end of the paper.
Some general guidelines you should remember are:
Now that you have an idea of the basic referencing rules you need to follow let’s dive into
more details of each section.
1. In-Text Citations
You have to include in-text citations during two situations
When you directly quote a phrase, sentence(s), or word(s) from another source
When you paraphrase from a book, article, journal, etc.
In-text citations are not as detailed as you have to write them in the main body of your paper.
In the Harvard referencing style. You have to include:
For example, in the case of author James Richards, the in-text reference would be Richards
(2018, p. 32) or (Richards, 2018, pp. 32-34)
a. What to do when there are two or three authors?
Sometimes two or three authors co-write a book or academic paper. In such cases, you have
to include all their surnames.
For example, Richards, Grey, Clive (2018, p. 32) or (Richards, Grey, Clive, 2018, p. 32)
b. What if there were four or more authors?
You don’t have to include the names of all authors when there are four or more. Instead, you
can add et al; after the first author’s surname.
For example, Richards et al (2018, p. 32) or (Richards et al, 2018, p. 32)
c. What if there are multiple works by the same author in the same year?
If an author has multiple works released in the same year and you have to reference them in
your paper, it’s best to allocate alphabets to distinguish them properly. These alphabets will
come after the publication year.
For example, Richards (2018a, p. 32) or (Richards, 2018b, p. 32)
2. Reference List
A reference list contains the entire collection of resources that you referred to in your paper.
Unlike the in-text citations, this section includes all the crucial details you need to know
about the reference to identify it correctly, such as the author’s name, publication year, source
title, and more.
Some rules that you have to maintain in the reference list following the Harvard
citation generator formats is:
The list of references should be on a separate sheet of paper at the end of the
This reference list is crucial if you want to avoid plagiarism in your paper. Moreover, proper
referencing helps the reader to consult the sources for more information if they require it.
How To Cite Different Types Of Sources?
When you have to work on your paper, there’s a high chance that you’ll have to gather
information from books, journals, articles, e-books, and other formats. Therefore, when citing
them in the reference list, you have to follow some particular rules.
1. When citing a book
Citing a book is perhaps the simplest of all Harvard references. It follows the format:
Author surname(s), initial(s). (Year published) Title. Edition. Publication place: Publisher.
For example, Richards, I.B. and Maddison S.A. (2018) Key Elements of Citation. 2nd Edn.
London: London Publishers.
2. When citing an e-book
Due to the advantage of technology, you can easily find e-book versions of rare and
expensive sources to improve your paper quality. They follow the format:
Author surname(s), initial(s). (Year published) Title. Edition. E-book
collection name [online]. Available at: URL or DOI (Accessed: date month year)
For example, Richards, I.B. and Maddison S.A. (2018) Key Elements of Citation. 2nd Edn. E-
book library [online] Available at: https://www.hemmington.com/ /key-elements-of-citation
(Accessed: 14 August 2020)
In case you access the e-book via an e-book reader, online needs to be replaced with an e-
3. When citing a journal
Another common source of information is journals. These follow the format:
Author name(s). (Year) ‘Title of article’, Title, Volume (issue/season number), page numbers
For example, Richards, I.B. and Maddison S.A. (2018); The Importance of Citation, Key
Elements of Citation, 62, pp. 39-40
4. When citing a newspaper article
A newspaper article follows a similar format to a journal. However, you have to include the
edition and publication date instead of the volume or issue number. The format is:
Author surname(s), initial(s). (Year) ‘Article Title’, Newspaper Title (edition), day month,
For example, Richards, I.B. (2018) Citations: The crux of the academic world; The
Telegraph (Weekend edition), 5 July, pp. 45-46
While there are plenty of other formats according to the source, these four are the most
common ones you’ll encounter while working on your paper.
Summing it up,
All universities and colleges require you to write proper references, mentioning all the details
of the works that helped you write your paper. Among the various referencing types, the
Harvard citation follows the author’s name and publication year referencing style within a
document to show that you have used legitimate sources in your work. As long as you follow
the format in this blog, you don’t have to worry about messing up your references and losing
David Logan is an esteemed professor from a reputed university in the UK. Currently, she is
working hard on her upcoming book on Renaissance literature. In addition, Jones loves to
attend period dramas and has a soft spot for baking on weekends.