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Citing

A guide to citing in the UoN Harvard Style

What is citation?

Referencing is a way of acknowledging other peoples’ ideas and work. You do this through a citation (in the text of your work) and a reference at the end of your work.  

References to other people’s ideas and work are an important part of academic writing as they: 

  • provide support for arguments and claims that you make 
  • show evidence of the breadth and depth of your reading. 

 Remember to reference every source that you use: 

  • to avoid plagiarism (i.e. to take other peoples’ thoughts, ideas or writings and use them as your own)  
  • to allow the reader of your work to refer to the original source to check and verify the ideas presented 
  • to avoid losing marks!

Referring to sources within your work (citing)

The citation within the text of your work is a brief acknowledgement to a source you have used for any of the reasons listed above. If you are using a direct quotation or are referring to a specific idea or assertion by an author, you need to let your reader know where you found the information by giving the author/creator’s surname, the year and the page number, e.g. (Surname, Year, Page).

Example 1: Research has shown a direct link between body image and self-esteem (Jones, 2010, p.4)

Example 2: Jones’ research has shown a direct link between body image and self-esteem (2010, p.4)

The page number is important, as one of the prime functions of referencing is to enable your reader to quickly locate the information you have used and to verify the conclusions you have drawn. By using the page number, your reader can do this without having to read the entire work. If you are not referring to a specific idea or assertion, but are referring to a work by an author in its entirety or to a more general argument you only need to include the author/creator’s surname and the year, e.g. (Surname, Year).

If you have named the author in the flow of your text, you only need to provide the year and page number (if applicable), e.g. (Year, Page).

Example 1: Terry Eagleton (1983) created an essential guide to literary theory that still resonates into the twenty first century…  
Example 2: Nikki Gamble has created a set of activities to aid narrative thinking and investigation (2013, p.70) …