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APA referencing guide

A guide to using the APA style of referencing

What is referencing?

When you write your assignment, you are required to refer to the work of other authors to strengthen your argument and provide evidence for the points you want to make. Each time you do so, it is necessary to identify their work by making reference to them in your own written work. This practice of acknowledging authors is known as 'referencing'. 

References must be provided whenever you use someone else's views, theories, data or organisation of material. You may need to reference a range of different sources of information, for example from books, journal articles, videos, websites, images, computers and any other print or electronic sources.

Why reference?

Acknowledging the work of others in your writing is good academic practice. Referencing also shows the breadth of your research, allows the reader to consult your sources and verify your data, and helps to avoid plagiarism and the penalties involved.

Steps involved in APA referencing

There are two forms of reference required in the Harvard method of referencing:

In-text citation, i.e. where you refer to the work or ideas of another individual or organisation and indicate this source at the relevant point in the body of your writing. An in-text citation will require brief details, including the name of the author, year of publication and potentially a page number.  Fuller details should be provided in your reference list later in your assignment.

Full reference in reference list, i.e. the full publication details for sources used, arranged alphabetically by author name or organisation name in a list provided towards the end of your assignment.