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General Harvard rules

Harvard General Rules

Quoting from a source means repeating a small amount of the author’s writing word-for-word. It can be useful when you feel it is important to use the author’s exact wording.

Paraphrasing a source means putting the author’s idea(s) into your own words and shows that you have understood the source by summarising it in your own words.

Both can be appropriate but it is best to use a combination of the two.

You are writing to demonstrate your understanding of a topic and present your point of view and good academic writing should include your own thoughts, ideas and comments in addition to quoting and paraphrasing from the information sources.

Whether quoting or paraphrasing, it is essential to provide an in-text citation and a reference in order to give credit to the author for the information you have used. An in-text citation for a quotation should include the page number(s) where the quote can be found. A letter p is used for single pages, while pp refers to multiple pages.

Quoting

Short quotations of less than 50 words can be embedded within your writing and should have “double quotation” marks around the text.

Example quotations of less than 50 words:

Neville (2010, p.96) states that “older books may not show a date of publication”.

An authority on referencing has stated that “older books may not show a date of publication” (Neville, 2010, p.96).

Longer quotations of more than 50 words should have “double quotation” marks around the text, be separated from the main body of your writing by a line above and below and indented at the left and right margins.

Example quotations of more than 50 words:

Neville (2010, pp.163-134) argues that:

“Digital object identifiers offer a more permanent means of finding a source, as URLs are vulnerable to change if, for example, the site is moved to another host. Digital object identifiers sources are given an alpha-numeric label that will track sources and thus offer a more persistent and consistent way of locating them. If a DOI is shown, use this in preference to a URL”.

An authority on referencing has stated that:

“Digital object identifiers offer a more permanent means of finding a source, as URLs are vulnerable to change if, for example, the site is moved to another host. Digital object identifiers sources are given an alpha-numeric label that will track sources and thus offer a more persistent and consistent way of locating them. If a DOI is shown, use this in preference to a URL”. (Neville, 2010, pp.163-164)

Paraphrasing

If you paraphrase quotation marks are not needed, but you still need to provide an in-text citation to show where you got the information from. Page numbers are not usually needed for paraphrasing (some subject areas may require you to use page numbers so check with your lecturer if you are not sure).

Examples:

Barker (2015) found that flexible workspaces had a positive impact on performance.

Recent research has discovered that flexible workspaces have a positive impact on performance (Barker, 2015).

When you refer to somebody else’s work you should acknowledge this by giving brief details of their name and the date of publication. This information usually appears in brackets and is called a citation. Citations are included within your work, as opposed to the reference list which appears at the end of your work.

There are two ways to produce a citation. The wording you use to introduce the ideas, work or thoughts of another writer determines which style of citation is appropriate.

Direct citation

If you mention the author by name in your work, the citation should only include the year of publication (and any page numbers if relevant, i.e. for a direct quote or a secondary reference).

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

Marsh (2009) argues that what students themselves take on board may differ from what is intended.

Indirect citation

If you do not mention the author by name in your work, your citation should include the author surname, year of publication (and any page numbers if relevant, i.e. for a direct quote or a secondary reference).

Example indirect citation (paraphrase):

What students themselves take on board may differ widely from what is intended (Marsh, 2009).

What you are reading may refer to the work of another author which you would like to reference in your own writing, e.g. a journal article about cheese, written by Di Grigoli et al., has the following sentence and you wish to use it in your own work:

“Research carried out by Urback (1997) concluded that the equipment used to make cheese influences the flavour.”

Try and get hold of an original copy of the work that is referred to and cite and reference from that. If you can't then you can include what is called a secondary reference - see below for an example.

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

Research carried out by Urbach (1997, cited in Di Grigoli et al, 2015, p.82) demonstrated this.

In this example the journal article by Di Grigoli et al is the information source that has been read. The article refers to work by Urbach and a secondary reference has been used. The citation includes the page where Di Grigoli et al have referred to Urbach’s work.

Example indirect citation (paraphrase):

Research carried out has demonstrated this (Urbach, 1997 cited in Di Grigoli et al, 2015, p.82).

The entry in your reference list would be for Di Grigoli et al:

Example reference:

Di Grigoli, A., Francescan, N., Gaglio, R., Guarrasi, V., Moschetti, M. L., Settani, L and Bonanno, A. (2015) The influence of the wooden equipment used for cheese manufacture on the characteristics of cheese during ripening. Food Microbiology, 46, pp.81-91.

You should use secondary references sparingly as you are essentially relying on somebody else’s interpretation of the original work.

Source with one author

Example reference:

Paxson, H. (2013) The life of cheese. [e-book] Berkeley: University of California Press. Available at: Leeds Trinity University Library http://library.leedstrinity.ac.uk [Accessed 10 March 2015].

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

Paxson (2013) argues that cheese embodies life.

Example in-direct citation (paraphrase):

It has been argued that cheese embodies life (Paxson, 2013).

Source with two authors

In both your reference and citations separate author surnames with the word ‘and’, do not use the & symbol.

Example reference:

Walsh, A. and Inala, P. (2010) Active learning techniques for librarians: practical examples. Oxford: Chandos Publishing.

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

Walsh and Inala (2010) promote the use of active learning in teaching.

Example indirect citation (paraphrase):

Learning should be an active rather than a passive experience (Walsh and Inala, 2010).

Source with more than two authors

In your reference use ‘and’ to separate the last two authors and a comma between all other authors. In your citation use ‘et al’ after the surname of the first author.

Example reference:

Armstrong, K. H., Ogg, J. A., Sundman-Wheat, A. N. and Walsh, A. (2014) Evidence-based interventions for children with challenging behaviour. Oxford: Chandos Publishing.

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

Armstrong, et al (2014) talk about the attachments toddlers form with adults other than their parents.

Example indirect citation (paraphrase):

As they develop, toddlers often form attachments with adults other than their parents (Armstrong, et al, 2014).

Source with no author

If an information source has no obvious author use the title, followed by the date of publication. In some cases a source may be assigned to ‘Anonymous’ and this should be used in place of any author name.

You should consider the quality of any source that you cannot identify the author of. In the case of online sources such as websites, look in the ‘about us’ section and in print material consult the copyright page which is usually on the inside front cover or back page. If the name of an organisation or government department is present you can use that in the absence of any individual author details.

Anonymous

Example reference:

Anonymous. (2014) A history of pencils. Wakefield: Graphite Publishing

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

The humble pencil has a long and illustrious history as demonstrated by Anonymous (2014).

Example indirect citation (paraphrase):

The humble pencil has a long and illustrious history (Anonymous, 2014).

Using title

Example reference:

A history of pencils. (2014). Wakefield: Graphite Publishing.

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

The humble pencil has a long and illustrious history as demonstrated in A history of pencils (2014).

Example indirect citation (paraphrase):

The humble pencil has a long and illustrious history (A history of pencils, 2014).

More than one place of publication

If more than one place of publication is listed, use the place that is listed first.

No place of publication

For some information sources, i.e. websites, you don’t necessarily need to include place of publication, for others, such as printed books you do. It can sometimes be difficult to find where an information source was published. One solution is to look the publisher up online and see if you can find any information about where they are based and use that as place of publication.

If the place of publication still eludes you use s.l. This stands for ‘sine loco’ – without place.

Example reference:

Smith, R. (2005) Accurate referencing. s.l.: Handy Publishing Ltd.

It’s important to know when a source was written, published or updated as this helps you evaluate its relevancy and currency. Where no date is obvious, put ND in the brackets instead. This applies to both your citation and your reference for the source in question.

Example reference:

Smith, R. (ND) Let’s keep in touch. Birstall: Western Books.

Example direct citation (paraphrase):

Smith (ND) argues this point.

Example indirect citation (paraphrase):

This point has been argued (Smith, ND).

Primary sources and approximate publication dates

For some sources, such as primary historical sources, it can be hard to establish the exact publication date. If this is the case, you can use c. for circa followed by an approximate publication date.

Example reference with approximate date:

Smith, W. (c.1655) Suggested cure for the plague. Held at: London: British Library. MS 651.

Example direct citation:

Smith (c.1655) suggested leeches as a cure for the plague.

Example indirect citation:

Leeches were suggested as a cure for the plague (Smith, c.1655).

When should I use italics in my writing?

Italics should be used when referring to the title of an Act of Parliament, a book, journal, play or longer poem published within a single volume.

Example:

The catcher in the rye is a novel by J. D. Salinger.

When should I use plain text in my writing?

Use plain text when referring to the Bible, titles of books of the Bible, the Quran and other religious texts.

Plain text and single quotation marks should be used when referring in your writing to the titles of poems which form part of a larger volume or anthology.

Example:

‘Existential pizza’ is the title of a poem by Fairfoot.

When referring to the titles of chapters in books or articles in journals within your writing, use plain text and enclose with single quotation marks.

Example:

Chapter 3 is called ‘The national picture’.

Edition details

You do not need to include edition details if the source you are using is the first edition. Edition details only need to be included in your reference and not the citation. Edition numbers can be abbreviated to 2nd, 3rd, 4th etc. Abbreviate the word ‘edition’ to ed.

Example reference (first edition):

Allarm, C. (2009) Study skills: a guide. Leeds: Academic Books Ltd.

Example reference (second, third edition and so on):

Allarm, C. (2014) Study skills: a guide. 3rd ed. Leeds: Academic Books Ltd.

Reprints

If you have used a reprinted work of a title initially published several years ago (in other words not a new edition with revised content), indicate this in your reference by including the word ‘Reprint’ after the title and the year of reprint after the reprint publisher details.

Example reference:

Fisher, J. (1950) Extreme fly fishing. Reprint, London: Scale Publishing, 2014.

Page numbers identify where a specific quotation, paragraph or piece of information can be found. You may need to provide an individual page number or a range. Use a lower case p. if the information is on a single page and pp. if the information spans a range of pages.

You do not need to include page numbers for every citation but there may be circumstances when page numbers are necessary and some subject areas may have a preference for the use of page numbers in citations. Your tutor will be able to advise you.

You should include page numbers in in-text citations for quotations and secondary references.

Examples (quotations):

It has been suggested by Higgins that “green is the most calming of colours” (1998, pp.124-125).

It has been suggested that “green is the most calming of colours” (Higgins, 1998, pp.124-125).

No page numbers

If you have quoted from a source with no page numbers (e.g. an online article) you should provide a paragraph number in the in-text citation. For example, starting from the top of the page, the third paragraph down would be paragraph 3. This is abbreviated to para. 3. The paragraph number is placed wherever you would normally put page numbers.

For longer documents you can use a chapter number/title or section heading, followed by the paragraph number within that chapter or section.

Example full reference: online article with no page numbers

Fotheringham, W. (2015) Sir Bradley Wiggins revels in ‘memorable’ world hour distance record. The Guardian, [online] Sunday 7 June. Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/jun/07/sir-bradley-wiggins-world-hour-record [Accessed 10 June 2015].

Example in-text citations using paragraph number (quotations):

Fotheringham (2014) states that “the pressure did get to Wiggins” (para. 5).

“The pressure did get to Wiggins” (Fotheringham, 2014, para. 5).

Page numbers and e-books

Some e-books do not provide page numbers. You should not use location numbers in Kindle (or other similar device) e-books as page numbers. Instead you should use chapter numbers or chapter titles in your in-text citations, followed by the paragraph number within that chapter.

If you have included an appendix at the end of your work (the results of a survey or questionnaire for example), you do not need to reference it but simply signpost the reader to it in your text using letters in alphabetical order like so (see Appendix A) or (see Appendix B).

If the appendix itself is entirely the work of someone else, include a citation at the end of it and a full reference in your reference list.

Tips for referencing primary sources in the text

If you are using multiple primary sources in the same piece of work, referencing them within your essay can become confusing, especially if you have several sources with no authors, no dates, and/or long titles which need abbreviating.

In these cases you can add some additional information to your references within the text, in order to help the reader tell the references apart. This might be a reference number from an archive, the specific date of a diary entry, the title of a periodical, etc. See examples below.

Pamphlet from an archive (reference includes archive number)

More (1560, ref. 18067 (STC 2nd ed.).) wrote a response defending women.

Pamphlet with long title and no author (reference includes archive number)

Some suggested dressing wounds with hot tar (An excellent recipe for the plague…, c.1737, ref. T096165 (estc).).

Diary entry

Bundy (24 June, 1916) described a long wait before being sent to France.

Letter

His correspondence at the time suggests he was preoccupied with entomology (Darwin, 1818, Letter to W.D. Fox).

Anonymous book review from a periodical

A review (‘On the Origin of Species’, London Quarterly Review, July 1860) noted that Darwin’s book condensed a huge amount of information.

Anonymous photograph from an archive

Destroyed bridge over the Canal du Nord at Moeuvres (c. 1918, Q45539) provides an example of the devastation wrought by the First World War in Northern France.