Referencing means making it clear when you have used another person’s work or ideas in your own writing. It is an important academic skill that is necessary in order to:
- Demonstrate that you have undertaken independent research to inform your work.
- Show that you can back up your argument with evidence.
- Give credit to the work of others and make it clear which ideas are your own and which have come from other people.
- Allow anyone reading your work to locate the information you have used from the citations and references you have provided.
- Improve your written work. Accurate referencing demonstrates your ability to select and appropriately use suitable evidence for a piece of academic writing.
- Avoid plagiarism. Plagiarism is a form of cheating which involves presenting another person’s work as your own. Understanding when and how to reference will help you avoid plagiarism.