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Academic Integrity - Referencing, Citation & Avoiding Plagiarism: Referencing & Citation

This guide explains what referencing and citation is and how to use the APA, Chicago, Harvard, MLA and Vancouver Styles. It includes a short interactive tutorial on each style.

What is Referencing & Citation?

Citing is the process of including details of your sources within the text of your assignment. This is also known as in-text citation.

Example of an in-text citation (Harvard Style)

Thinking critically (Cottrell, 2005) is a key skill to develop at University. It involves acquiring the skill to be able to read academic information and arguments while assessing their validity (Cottrell, 2003). When thinking critically a person needs to identify the main argument of a piece, the evidence the argument is based on, and identify any assumptions that have been made in making the argument (Moore, 2010). Understanding bias and being able to weigh the evidence presented is an essential element to critical thinking (McMillan and Weyers, 2013).

Referencing is the process of acknowledging in detail all the information sources (books, journal articles, images, data, webpages etc.) that you have used in completing an assignment. References form a list with full details of sources placed at the end of an assignment or paper.

Example of a reference list (Harvard Style):

Cottrell, S. (2003) The study skills handbook. Palgrave study guides 2nd edn. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Cottrell, S. (2005) Critical thinking skills : developing effective analysis and argument. Palgrave study guides Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

McMillan, K. and Weyers, J. D. B. (2013) How to cite, reference & avoid plagiarism at university Harlow: Pearson.

Moore, S. (2010) The ultimate study skills handbook. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill/Open University Press.


Tutorials - basic introductions to each style

For an introduction to your discipline's style look at one of our tutorials here.

For a detailed look, check out the pages on the top of this guide.

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