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What is Harvard Referencing?

What is Harvard referencing?

What do you mean by Harvard Referencing?

In the academic world, references and citations are quite common and there are apparently thousands of different styles in which this can be done during writing academic research papers or term papers. According to the different academic fields and streams, the referencing style preferences and priorities vary. Moreover, different publishing houses have their own preferred citation house styles. The most popular among them is perhaps the Harvard referencing style. It has its origin in ‘The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation’ that was published sometimes back by the HLRA (Harvard Law Review Association).  Today the Harvard referencing style is followed in several fields like Law, Behavioral and Social Sciences, Medicines and so on.

Various important and unique Features of Harvard school of Referencing

There are several basic features that characterize the Harvard school of referencing style that are used extensively by the academic writers for their research essay papers or  term papers. These features are as follows:

  • The Basics: Special emphasize on mention of the original author’s name and date of publication of his work with a repeated mention again in the Bibliography section at the end of the writing in an alphabetical order.
  • The Capitals: Only the author’s surname or family is required to be capitalized in only the Bibliography part and not in the body of the writing, which again is not compulsory.
  • The Punctuations: There is no hard and fast rule to punctuate. The only requirement is to be uniform with one single style of punctuation.
  • Italics and underline: While using both Italics and underline at the same time is not necessary, it is advisable to go with the former and use it in case of mentioning the title or name of the information source.
  • Multiple Authors: While mentioning more than one author, it is a rule to follow the publication order and separate each author by a semicolon.
  • Multiple works: In case of referencing more than one work by the same author, simply follow the date of publication order and then alphabetically.
  • Citing an already cited reference: Mention a detail of the writer who has made the particular reference before, in the reference list.
  • Quotation: While short quotes can be mentioned inside the body of the writing, longer ones need to be cited separately in a different paragraph.
  • Reference list: This reference list comes at the end of each text and are listed alphabetically and then by the date of publication of the particular work.
  • Paraphrasing: A paraphrasing, though usually done in the writer’s own language, still needs referencing due to the concept or idea. It, however, requires just a mention of the author’s name and the year.
  • Online or web source referencing: In case of using a web source as reference, it is necessary to mention the author and the year and not the URL or the web page address of the source.

How does the Harvard Referencing work in academic line? Its importance

Referencing is an essential and important part of any academic writing, be it any thesis or research paper, dissertation proposal writing or term paper. It is basically needed to acknowledge and respect the facts, concepts ideas, quotes or any other form of information or image of any other researcher or author that the academic writer has used in his/her entire work. Now the importance of the Harvard referencing in the academic field is manifold since it provides an easy and user friendly way of citation thus both maintain the writer’s dignity and easing down his work. While otherwise, the Harvard style offers the usual referencing advantages and requirements, it also adds some sort of distinction to the writer’s academic work due to its variation, although slight, in punctuation, abbreviation, capitalization, Italics etc.

The basic functions of Harvard Referencing

The basic function of Harvard style of referencing is same as the function of a general referencing. These are as follows:

  • It helps the readers sufficiently to trace the referred work or information without much difficulty
  • It provides enough evidence to the readers and others for the academic writer to justify his vast reading and research on a given subject or topic
  • The Harvard referencing style also includes a wide range of information referencing rules which leaves practically no chance for any kind of plagiarism
  • The ‘in text’ referencing and the detailed Reference List system (also called the Bibliography) at the end of the academic work, in the Harvard referencing style, helps the readers to understand the writer’s point without any huge effort

Examples of Harvard Referencing

One of the most popular and frequently used referencing styles of Staffordshire, the Harvard style of referencing is also commonly called the Author Date referencing style.  As the name suggests, it lays emphasis mainly on the name of the creator and the date of publication of the work. A compiled list of a few Harvard referencing style examples is provided below for a better comprehension.

  • Newspaper article (No author): Ex – The New York Times 8 December 2010, p. 6
  • Website: Ex – New York security Exchange 2007
  • Blog: Ex – Godwin 2004
  • From a cited source: Ex – Macpherson, cited in Munich 2005
  • Web Document: Ex – Department of Industry, Hospitality, Resources and Tourism 2008
  • Television program: Ex – Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. (1995). BBC 2, 5 January
  • Newspaper article (with author): Ex – Sabo. G. M (2006) “ Nationalism and Patriotism” , XYZ Paper, 3 December 2003, p. 18
  • Book Chapter: Ex -Strand, J.(1994), “ The self awareness”, Discovering the Self, London: S.T, p 22 – 31
  • Video: Ex-The Anger Management. (1996) Directed by T. F. Moody. Hollywood: HBO Movies
  • Journal article: Ex – Somerset, T. J. (1996), “The Human Mind”. The British Daily Health Journal, 12 (7), 38 – 47
  • Quotation (in text): Ex – Waugh, G. B. (2006: 23)

An Introductory Guide to APA Referencing

An Introductory Guide to APA Referencing

The American Psychological Association introduced a special form of referencing in their research essay and academic essays. This style, known as APA style of referencing, has been adapted by various education institutions as the preferred format for presenting citations in academic papers, especially in the field of science. It falls under the Parenthetical or Author-Date style of referencing. In this form of referencing, there are no footnotes or endnotes. Instead, the citations occur in the text, enclosed by parentheses, before the full stop of the sentence containing the reference. At the end of the entire text, a reference list is produced which consists of all the citations throughout the essay arranged in alphabetical order of the author’s name. While it may sound similar to the Harvard or MLA style, there are subtle syntactical differences that separate them.

In-Text Citations

The citations that occur within the text are rather simple in format when compared to those of the reference list. The general format is: (Author, date of publication, page number). Now there are some special cases where this format has to be tweaked a little.

  • If the name has to be used within the sentence structure, the date and page appears within parentheses after the name.

Author (date, page)

  • If there are more than one citations for a single reference, the citations are separated by a semicolon.

(Author1, date1, page1; Author2, date2, page2)

  • If there are multiple works by the same author that have to be cited at the same time, arrange the dates from the oldest to the newest. Use suffixes of lowercase alphabets if different works were published in the same year. There should not be any punctuation or space between the year and the suffix.

(Author, date1, date2a, date2b, date3)

  • If there are upto five authors of the same work, all the names have to be cited in the first instance. In subsequent citations, only the name of the first author has to be mentioned followed by ”et al.”

First: (Author1, Author2, Author3, Author4, Author5, date)

Second: (Author1 et al., date)

If the number of author exceeds 6, only the first author is mentioned followed by ”et al.” and date for all citations. Details are provided in the list of references at the end of the text.

  • If there is no author, the shortened name of the title of the work replaces the section for author’s name. The title must appear in double quotes and with the first word capitalized). If the source is anonymous, the word ‘Anonymous’ is written as if it is the author’s name.

(”Short title”, date)

(Anonymous, date)

  • In case there is a group of authors, in the first citation the name of the group is spelled out. Abbreviations can be used from subsequent citations.

First: [Full name of group (abbreviation), date]

Second: (abbreviation, date)

Besides these points, there are a few more factors that have to be kept in mind. Citations must be given everytime a reference occur. Otherwise, this will lead to copyright infringement followed by charges of plagiarism. In case a secondary source is being cited, the primary source has to be mentioned before the secondary source, separated by ”as cited in”.

Reference List

In the APA style of referencing, apart from the in-text references, a list of citations is presented at the end of the entire text. It must be written on a fresh page with heading ‘References’ neatly centred. All the entries must be double spaced. A hanging indent is preferred. This means that the second and subsequent lines of each entry will bear an indent of half an inch. Entries are to be made in the alphabetical order of the author’s name. If more than one work of the same author is cited, the work with the earliest publication date is cited first. Also, if a secondary source is being cited, only the second source is to be mentioned in the reference list.

  • The format of citations for printed books is:

[Author, First Initial.Middle Initial. (year). Title of work. Location: Publisher]

  • The format of citation for online books is:

[Author, First Initial.Middle Initial. (year). Title of work. Retrieved from http://www…]

The titles in both cases must be given in italics. Volume number, chapter and page, if available, can be included in parentheses after the title before the full stop separating it from the year. For up to 7 authors involved in the same work, all names have to be listed separated by commas. If there are more than 7 authors, then the name of the first six are to be listed followed by three dots and then the name of the last author. In case there are no authors, the title of the work replaces the section where author’s name is to be mentioned. If the work is anonymous, ‘Anonymous’ is written as if it is the author’s name. In case the author is also the publisher, the term ‘Author’ is placed where the publisher’s name occurs. In case a group of authors is present, the full official name of the group is to be used in place of author’s name.

  • The format of citations for journals and newspaper articles is:

[Author1, FirstInitial1.MiddleInitial1., Author2, FirstInitial2.MiddleInitial2., & Author3, FirstInitial3.MiddleInitial3. (year). Article Title. Journal Title, Volume Number (issue number), page number. Doi/’Retrieved from…’]

If the given magazine or newsletter does not bear a volume number, the month is to be included along with the year of publication. In case of daily or weekly papers, the day is to be included too. In this situation, the page number is to be preceded by ‘p.’ or ‘pp.’

As in case of books, up to 7 authors are mentioned in citations. If the number of authors exceeds 7, the first six are mentioned followed by three dots and then the last author. If there is no author, title of work moves to the position of author’s name. The first letter of the first significant word of the title is used for ordering alphabetically. If the title starts with a number, the number is spelled out for ordering. ‘Anonymous’ is used as if it were a name.

Hopefully this information is enough to provide an idea about the basics of the APA referencing style. It must be noted that there are much more intricate rules to suit specific situations. For that, one must study the original APA manual carefully.