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References in Research – Types, Examples and Writing Guide

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References in Research

References in Research

Definition:

References in research are a list of sources that a researcher has consulted or cited while conducting their study. They are an essential component of any academic work, including research papers, theses, dissertations, and other scholarly publications.

Types of References

There are several types of references used in research, and the type of reference depends on the source of information being cited. The most common types of references include:

References to books typically include the author’s name, title of the book, publisher, publication date, and place of publication.

Example: Smith, J. (2018). The Art of Writing. Penguin Books.

Journal Articles

References to journal articles usually include the author’s name, title of the article, name of the journal, volume and issue number, page numbers, and publication date.

Example: Johnson, T. (2021). The Impact of Social Media on Mental Health. Journal of Psychology, 32(4), 87-94.

Web sources

References to web sources should include the author or organization responsible for the content, the title of the page, the URL, and the date accessed.

Example: World Health Organization. (2020). Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/emergencies/disease/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public

Conference Proceedings

References to conference proceedings should include the author’s name, title of the paper, name of the conference, location of the conference, date of the conference, and page numbers.

Example: Chen, S., & Li, J. (2019). The Future of AI in Education. Proceedings of the International Conference on Educational Technology, Beijing, China, July 15-17, pp. 67-78.

References to reports typically include the author or organization responsible for the report, title of the report, publication date, and publisher.

Example: United Nations. (2020). The Sustainable Development Goals Report. United Nations.

Formats of References

Some common Formates of References with their examples are as follows:

APA (American Psychological Association) Style

The APA (American Psychological Association) Style has specific guidelines for formatting references used in academic papers, articles, and books. Here are the different reference formats in APA style with examples:

Author, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of book. Publisher.

Example : Smith, J. K. (2005). The psychology of social interaction. Wiley-Blackwell.

Journal Article

Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (Year of publication). Title of article. Title of Journal, volume number(issue number), page numbers.

Example : Brown, L. M., Keating, J. G., & Jones, S. M. (2012). The role of social support in coping with stress among African American adolescents. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 22(1), 218-233.

Author, A. A. (Year of publication or last update). Title of page. Website name. URL.

Example : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, December 11). COVID-19: How to protect yourself and others. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html

Magazine article

Author, A. A. (Year, Month Day of publication). Title of article. Title of Magazine, volume number(issue number), page numbers.

Example : Smith, M. (2019, March 11). The power of positive thinking. Psychology Today, 52(3), 60-65.

Newspaper article:

Author, A. A. (Year, Month Day of publication). Title of article. Title of Newspaper, page numbers.

Example: Johnson, B. (2021, February 15). New study shows benefits of exercise on mental health. The New York Times, A8.

Edited book

Editor, E. E. (Ed.). (Year of publication). Title of book. Publisher.

Example : Thompson, J. P. (Ed.). (2014). Social work in the 21st century. Sage Publications.

Chapter in an edited book:

Author, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of chapter. In E. E. Editor (Ed.), Title of book (pp. page numbers). Publisher.

Example : Johnson, K. S. (2018). The future of social work: Challenges and opportunities. In J. P. Thompson (Ed.), Social work in the 21st century (pp. 105-118). Sage Publications.

MLA (Modern Language Association) Style

The MLA (Modern Language Association) Style is a widely used style for writing academic papers and essays in the humanities. Here are the different reference formats in MLA style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Book. Publisher, Publication year.

Example : Smith, John. The Psychology of Social Interaction. Wiley-Blackwell, 2005.

Journal article

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Journal, volume number, issue number, Publication year, page numbers.

Example : Brown, Laura M., et al. “The Role of Social Support in Coping with Stress among African American Adolescents.” Journal of Research on Adolescence, vol. 22, no. 1, 2012, pp. 218-233.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Webpage.” Website Name, Publication date, URL.

Example : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “COVID-19: How to Protect Yourself and Others.” CDC, 11 Dec. 2020, https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Magazine, Publication date, page numbers.

Example : Smith, Mary. “The Power of Positive Thinking.” Psychology Today, Mar. 2019, pp. 60-65.

Newspaper article

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Newspaper, Publication date, page numbers.

Example : Johnson, Bob. “New Study Shows Benefits of Exercise on Mental Health.” The New York Times, 15 Feb. 2021, p. A8.

Editor’s Last name, First name, editor. Title of Book. Publisher, Publication year.

Example : Thompson, John P., editor. Social Work in the 21st Century. Sage Publications, 2014.

Chapter in an edited book

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Chapter.” Title of Book, edited by Editor’s First Name Last name, Publisher, Publication year, page numbers.

Example : Johnson, Karen S. “The Future of Social Work: Challenges and Opportunities.” Social Work in the 21st Century, edited by John P. Thompson, Sage Publications, 2014, pp. 105-118.

Chicago Manual of Style

The Chicago Manual of Style is a widely used style for writing academic papers, dissertations, and books in the humanities and social sciences. Here are the different reference formats in Chicago style:

Example : Smith, John K. The Psychology of Social Interaction. Wiley-Blackwell, 2005.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Journal volume number, no. issue number (Publication year): page numbers.

Example : Brown, Laura M., John G. Keating, and Sarah M. Jones. “The Role of Social Support in Coping with Stress among African American Adolescents.” Journal of Research on Adolescence 22, no. 1 (2012): 218-233.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Webpage.” Website Name. Publication date. URL.

Example : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “COVID-19: How to Protect Yourself and Others.” CDC. December 11, 2020. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Magazine, Publication date.

Example : Smith, Mary. “The Power of Positive Thinking.” Psychology Today, March 2019.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Newspaper, Publication date.

Example : Johnson, Bob. “New Study Shows Benefits of Exercise on Mental Health.” The New York Times, February 15, 2021.

Example : Thompson, John P., ed. Social Work in the 21st Century. Sage Publications, 2014.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Chapter.” In Title of Book, edited by Editor’s First Name Last Name, page numbers. Publisher, Publication year.

Example : Johnson, Karen S. “The Future of Social Work: Challenges and Opportunities.” In Social Work in the 21st Century, edited by John P. Thompson, 105-118. Sage Publications, 2014.

Harvard Style

The Harvard Style, also known as the Author-Date System, is a widely used style for writing academic papers and essays in the social sciences. Here are the different reference formats in Harvard Style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of publication. Title of Book. Place of publication: Publisher.

Example : Smith, John. 2005. The Psychology of Social Interaction. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of publication. “Title of Article.” Title of Journal volume number (issue number): page numbers.

Example: Brown, Laura M., John G. Keating, and Sarah M. Jones. 2012. “The Role of Social Support in Coping with Stress among African American Adolescents.” Journal of Research on Adolescence 22 (1): 218-233.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of publication. “Title of Webpage.” Website Name. URL. Accessed date.

Example : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2020. “COVID-19: How to Protect Yourself and Others.” CDC. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html. Accessed April 1, 2023.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of publication. “Title of Article.” Title of Magazine, month and date of publication.

Example : Smith, Mary. 2019. “The Power of Positive Thinking.” Psychology Today, March 2019.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of publication. “Title of Article.” Title of Newspaper, month and date of publication.

Example : Johnson, Bob. 2021. “New Study Shows Benefits of Exercise on Mental Health.” The New York Times, February 15, 2021.

Editor’s Last name, First name, ed. Year of publication. Title of Book. Place of publication: Publisher.

Example : Thompson, John P., ed. 2014. Social Work in the 21st Century. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of publication. “Title of Chapter.” In Title of Book, edited by Editor’s First Name Last Name, page numbers. Place of publication: Publisher.

Example : Johnson, Karen S. 2014. “The Future of Social Work: Challenges and Opportunities.” In Social Work in the 21st Century, edited by John P. Thompson, 105-118. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Vancouver Style

The Vancouver Style, also known as the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals, is a widely used style for writing academic papers in the biomedical sciences. Here are the different reference formats in Vancouver Style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Book. Edition number. Place of publication: Publisher; Year of publication.

Example : Smith, John K. The Psychology of Social Interaction. 2nd ed. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell; 2005.

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Article. Abbreviated Journal Title. Year of publication; volume number(issue number):page numbers.

Example : Brown LM, Keating JG, Jones SM. The Role of Social Support in Coping with Stress among African American Adolescents. J Res Adolesc. 2012;22(1):218-233.

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Webpage. Website Name [Internet]. Publication date. [cited date]. Available from: URL.

Example : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. COVID-19: How to Protect Yourself and Others [Internet]. 2020 Dec 11. [cited 2023 Apr 1]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html.

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Article. Title of Magazine. Year of publication; month and day of publication:page numbers.

Example : Smith M. The Power of Positive Thinking. Psychology Today. 2019 Mar 1:32-35.

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Article. Title of Newspaper. Year of publication; month and day of publication:page numbers.

Example : Johnson B. New Study Shows Benefits of Exercise on Mental Health. The New York Times. 2021 Feb 15:A4.

Editor’s Last name, First name, editor. Title of Book. Edition number. Place of publication: Publisher; Year of publication.

Example: Thompson JP, editor. Social Work in the 21st Century. 1st ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications; 2014.

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Chapter. In: Editor’s Last name, First name, editor. Title of Book. Edition number. Place of publication: Publisher; Year of publication. page numbers.

Example : Johnson KS. The Future of Social Work: Challenges and Opportunities. In: Thompson JP, editor. Social Work in the 21st Century. 1st ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications; 2014. p. 105-118.

Turabian Style

Turabian style is a variation of the Chicago style used in academic writing, particularly in the fields of history and humanities. Here are the different reference formats in Turabian style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Book. Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication.

Example : Smith, John K. The Psychology of Social Interaction. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2005.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Journal volume number, no. issue number (Year of publication): page numbers.

Example : Brown, LM, Keating, JG, Jones, SM. “The Role of Social Support in Coping with Stress among African American Adolescents.” J Res Adolesc 22, no. 1 (2012): 218-233.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Webpage.” Name of Website. Publication date. Accessed date. URL.

Example : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “COVID-19: How to Protect Yourself and Others.” CDC. December 11, 2020. Accessed April 1, 2023. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Magazine, Month Day, Year of publication, page numbers.

Example : Smith, M. “The Power of Positive Thinking.” Psychology Today, March 1, 2019, 32-35.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Title of Newspaper, Month Day, Year of publication.

Example : Johnson, B. “New Study Shows Benefits of Exercise on Mental Health.” The New York Times, February 15, 2021.

Editor’s Last name, First name, ed. Title of Book. Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication.

Example : Thompson, JP, ed. Social Work in the 21st Century. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2014.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Chapter.” In Title of Book, edited by Editor’s Last name, First name, page numbers. Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication.

Example : Johnson, KS. “The Future of Social Work: Challenges and Opportunities.” In Social Work in the 21st Century, edited by Thompson, JP, 105-118. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2014.

IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Style

IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) style is commonly used in engineering, computer science, and other technical fields. Here are the different reference formats in IEEE style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Book Title. Place of Publication: Publisher, Year of publication.

Example : Oppenheim, A. V., & Schafer, R. W. Discrete-Time Signal Processing. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2010.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Article.” Abbreviated Journal Title, vol. number, no. issue number, pp. page numbers, Month year of publication.

Example: Shannon, C. E. “A Mathematical Theory of Communication.” Bell System Technical Journal, vol. 27, no. 3, pp. 379-423, July 1948.

Conference paper

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Paper.” In Title of Conference Proceedings, Place of Conference, Date of Conference, pp. page numbers, Year of publication.

Example: Gupta, S., & Kumar, P. “An Improved System of Linear Discriminant Analysis for Face Recognition.” In Proceedings of the 2011 International Conference on Computer Science and Network Technology, Harbin, China, Dec. 2011, pp. 144-147.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Webpage.” Name of Website. Date of publication or last update. Accessed date. URL.

Example : National Aeronautics and Space Administration. “Apollo 11.” NASA. July 20, 1969. Accessed April 1, 2023. https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/apollo/apollo11.html.

Technical report

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Report.” Name of Institution or Organization, Report number, Year of publication.

Example : Smith, J. R. “Development of a New Solar Panel Technology.” National Renewable Energy Laboratory, NREL/TP-6A20-51645, 2011.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Patent.” Patent number, Issue date.

Example : Suzuki, H. “Method of Producing Carbon Nanotubes.” US Patent 7,151,019, December 19, 2006.

Standard Title. Standard number, Publication date.

Example : IEEE Standard for Floating-Point Arithmetic. IEEE Std 754-2008, August 29, 2008

ACS (American Chemical Society) Style

ACS (American Chemical Society) style is commonly used in chemistry and related fields. Here are the different reference formats in ACS style:

Author’s Last name, First name; Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Article. Abbreviated Journal Title Year, Volume, Page Numbers.

Example : Wang, Y.; Zhao, X.; Cui, Y.; Ma, Y. Facile Preparation of Fe3O4/graphene Composites Using a Hydrothermal Method for High-Performance Lithium Ion Batteries. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2012, 4, 2715-2721.

Author’s Last name, First name. Book Title; Publisher: Place of Publication, Year of Publication.

Example : Carey, F. A. Organic Chemistry; McGraw-Hill: New York, 2008.

Author’s Last name, First name. Chapter Title. In Book Title; Editor’s Last name, First name, Ed.; Publisher: Place of Publication, Year of Publication; Volume number, Chapter number, Page Numbers.

Example : Grossman, R. B. Analytical Chemistry of Aerosols. In Aerosol Measurement: Principles, Techniques, and Applications; Baron, P. A.; Willeke, K., Eds.; Wiley-Interscience: New York, 2001; Chapter 10, pp 395-424.

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Webpage. Website Name, URL (accessed date).

Example : National Institute of Standards and Technology. Atomic Spectra Database. https://www.nist.gov/pml/atomic-spectra-database (accessed April 1, 2023).

Author’s Last name, First name. Patent Number. Patent Date.

Example : Liu, Y.; Huang, H.; Chen, H.; Zhang, W. US Patent 9,999,999, December 31, 2022.

Author’s Last name, First name; Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Article. In Title of Conference Proceedings, Publisher: Place of Publication, Year of Publication; Volume Number, Page Numbers.

Example : Jia, H.; Xu, S.; Wu, Y.; Wu, Z.; Tang, Y.; Huang, X. Fast Adsorption of Organic Pollutants by Graphene Oxide. In Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Environmental Science and Technology, American Chemical Society: Washington, DC, 2017; Volume 1, pp 223-228.

AMA (American Medical Association) Style

AMA (American Medical Association) style is commonly used in medical and scientific fields. Here are the different reference formats in AMA style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Article Title. Journal Abbreviation. Year; Volume(Issue):Page Numbers.

Example : Jones, R. A.; Smith, B. C. The Role of Vitamin D in Maintaining Bone Health. JAMA. 2019;321(17):1765-1773.

Author’s Last name, First name. Book Title. Edition number. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year.

Example : Guyton, A. C.; Hall, J. E. Textbook of Medical Physiology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders; 2015.

Author’s Last name, First name. Chapter Title. In: Editor’s Last name, First name, ed. Book Title. Edition number. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year: Page Numbers.

Example: Rajakumar, K. Vitamin D and Bone Health. In: Holick, M. F., ed. Vitamin D: Physiology, Molecular Biology, and Clinical Applications. 2nd ed. New York, NY: Springer; 2010:211-222.

Author’s Last name, First name. Webpage Title. Website Name. URL. Published date. Updated date. Accessed date.

Example : National Cancer Institute. Breast Cancer Prevention (PDQ®)–Patient Version. National Cancer Institute. https://www.cancer.gov/types/breast/patient/breast-prevention-pdq. Published October 11, 2022. Accessed April 1, 2023.

Author’s Last name, First name. Conference presentation title. In: Conference Title; Conference Date; Place of Conference.

Example : Smith, J. R. Vitamin D and Bone Health: A Meta-Analysis. In: Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research; September 20-23, 2022; San Diego, CA.

Thesis or dissertation

Author’s Last name, First name. Title of Thesis or Dissertation. Degree level [Doctoral dissertation or Master’s thesis]. University Name; Year.

Example : Wilson, S. A. The Effects of Vitamin D Supplementation on Bone Health in Postmenopausal Women [Doctoral dissertation]. University of California, Los Angeles; 2018.

ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers) Style

The ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers) style is commonly used in civil engineering fields. Here are the different reference formats in ASCE style:

Author’s Last name, First name. “Article Title.” Journal Title, volume number, issue number (year): page numbers. DOI or URL (if available).

Example : Smith, J. R. “Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Sustainable Drainage Systems in Urban Areas.” Journal of Environmental Engineering, vol. 146, no. 3 (2020): 04020010. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)EE.1943-7870.0001668.

Example : McCuen, R. H. Hydrologic Analysis and Design. 4th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education; 2013.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Chapter Title.” In: Editor’s Last name, First name, ed. Book Title. Edition number. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year: page numbers.

Example : Maidment, D. R. “Floodplain Management in the United States.” In: Shroder, J. F., ed. Treatise on Geomorphology. San Diego, CA: Academic Press; 2013: 447-460.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Paper Title.” In: Conference Title; Conference Date; Location. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year: page numbers.

Example: Smith, J. R. “Sustainable Drainage Systems for Urban Areas.” In: Proceedings of the ASCE International Conference on Sustainable Infrastructure; November 6-9, 2019; Los Angeles, CA. Reston, VA: American Society of Civil Engineers; 2019: 156-163.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Report Title.” Report number. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year.

Example : U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. “Hurricane Sandy Coastal Risk Reduction Program, New York and New Jersey.” Report No. P-15-001. Washington, DC: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; 2015.

CSE (Council of Science Editors) Style

The CSE (Council of Science Editors) style is commonly used in the scientific and medical fields. Here are the different reference formats in CSE style:

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. “Article Title.” Journal Title. Year;Volume(Issue):Page numbers.

Example : Smith, J.R. “Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Sustainable Drainage Systems in Urban Areas.” Journal of Environmental Engineering. 2020;146(3):04020010.

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. Book Title. Edition number. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year.

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. “Chapter Title.” In: Editor’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial., ed. Book Title. Edition number. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year:Page numbers.

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. “Paper Title.” In: Conference Title; Conference Date; Location. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year.

Example : Smith, J.R. “Sustainable Drainage Systems for Urban Areas.” In: Proceedings of the ASCE International Conference on Sustainable Infrastructure; November 6-9, 2019; Los Angeles, CA. Reston, VA: American Society of Civil Engineers; 2019.

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. “Report Title.” Report number. Place of Publication: Publisher; Year.

Bluebook Style

The Bluebook style is commonly used in the legal field for citing legal documents and sources. Here are the different reference formats in Bluebook style:

Case citation

Case name, volume source page (Court year).

Example : Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954).

Statute citation

Name of Act, volume source § section number (year).

Example : Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. § 7401 (1963).

Regulation citation

Name of regulation, volume source § section number (year).

Example: Clean Air Act, 40 C.F.R. § 52.01 (2019).

Book citation

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. Book Title. Edition number (if applicable). Place of Publication: Publisher; Year.

Example: Smith, J.R. Legal Writing and Analysis. 3rd ed. New York, NY: Aspen Publishers; 2015.

Journal article citation

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. “Article Title.” Journal Title. Volume number (year): first page-last page.

Example: Garcia, C. “The Right to Counsel: An International Comparison.” International Journal of Legal Information. 43 (2015): 63-94.

Website citation

Author’s Last name, First Initial. Middle Initial. “Page Title.” Website Title. URL (accessed month day, year).

Example : United Nations. “Universal Declaration of Human Rights.” United Nations. https://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/ (accessed January 3, 2023).

Oxford Style

The Oxford style, also known as the Oxford referencing system or the documentary-note citation system, is commonly used in the humanities, including literature, history, and philosophy. Here are the different reference formats in Oxford style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Book Title. Place of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication.

Example : Smith, John. The Art of Writing. New York: Penguin, 2020.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Article Title.” Journal Title volume, no. issue (year): page range.

Example: Garcia, Carlos. “The Role of Ethics in Philosophy.” Philosophy Today 67, no. 3 (2019): 53-68.

Chapter in an edited book citation

Author’s Last name, First name. “Chapter Title.” In Book Title, edited by Editor’s Name, page range. Place of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication.

Example : Lee, Mary. “Feminism in the 21st Century.” In The Oxford Handbook of Feminism, edited by Jane Smith, 51-69. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018.

Author’s Last name, First name. “Page Title.” Website Title. URL (accessed day month year).

Example : Jones, David. “The Importance of Learning Languages.” Oxford Language Center. https://www.oxfordlanguagecenter.com/importance-of-learning-languages/ (accessed 3 January 2023).

Dissertation or thesis citation

Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Dissertation/Thesis.” PhD diss., University Name, Year of Publication.

Example : Brown, Susan. “The Art of Storytelling in American Literature.” PhD diss., University of Oxford, 2020.

Newspaper article citation

Author’s Last name, First name. “Article Title.” Newspaper Title, Month Day, Year.

Example : Robinson, Andrew. “New Developments in Climate Change Research.” The Guardian, September 15, 2022.

AAA (American Anthropological Association) Style

The American Anthropological Association (AAA) style is commonly used in anthropology research papers and journals. Here are the different reference formats in AAA style:

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. Book Title. Place of Publication: Publisher.

Example : Smith, John. 2019. The Anthropology of Food. New York: Routledge.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. “Article Title.” Journal Title volume, no. issue: page range.

Example : Garcia, Carlos. 2021. “The Role of Ethics in Anthropology.” American Anthropologist 123, no. 2: 237-251.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. “Chapter Title.” In Book Title, edited by Editor’s Name, page range. Place of Publication: Publisher.

Example: Lee, Mary. 2018. “Feminism in Anthropology.” In The Oxford Handbook of Feminism, edited by Jane Smith, 51-69. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. “Page Title.” Website Title. URL (accessed day month year).

Example : Jones, David. 2020. “The Importance of Learning Languages.” Oxford Language Center. https://www.oxfordlanguagecenter.com/importance-of-learning-languages/ (accessed January 3, 2023).

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. “Title of Dissertation/Thesis.” PhD diss., University Name.

Example : Brown, Susan. 2022. “The Art of Storytelling in Anthropology.” PhD diss., University of California, Berkeley.

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. “Article Title.” Newspaper Title, Month Day.

Example : Robinson, Andrew. 2021. “New Developments in Anthropology Research.” The Guardian, September 15.

AIP (American Institute of Physics) Style

The American Institute of Physics (AIP) style is commonly used in physics research papers and journals. Here are the different reference formats in AIP style:

Example : Johnson, S. D. 2021. “Quantum Computing and Information.” Journal of Applied Physics 129, no. 4: 043102.

Example : Feynman, Richard. 2018. The Feynman Lectures on Physics. New York: Basic Books.

Example : Jones, David. 2020. “The Future of Quantum Computing.” In The Handbook of Physics, edited by John Smith, 125-136. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Conference proceedings citation

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. “Title of Paper.” Proceedings of Conference Name, date and location: page range. Place of Publication: Publisher.

Example : Chen, Wei. 2019. “The Applications of Nanotechnology in Solar Cells.” Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Nanotechnology, July 15-17, Tokyo, Japan: 224-229. New York: AIP Publishing.

Example : American Institute of Physics. 2022. “About AIP Publishing.” AIP Publishing. https://publishing.aip.org/about-aip-publishing/ (accessed January 3, 2023).

Patent citation

Author’s Last name, First name. Year of Publication. Patent Number.

Example : Smith, John. 2018. US Patent 9,873,644.

References Writing Guide

Here are some general guidelines for writing references:

  • Follow the citation style guidelines: Different disciplines and journals may require different citation styles (e.g., APA, MLA, Chicago). It is important to follow the specific guidelines for the citation style required.
  • Include all necessary information : Each citation should include enough information for readers to locate the source. For example, a journal article citation should include the author(s), title of the article, journal title, volume number, issue number, page numbers, and publication year.
  • Use proper formatting: Citation styles typically have specific formatting requirements for different types of sources. Make sure to follow the proper formatting for each citation.
  • Order citations alphabetically: If listing multiple sources, they should be listed alphabetically by the author’s last name.
  • Be consistent: Use the same citation style throughout the entire paper or project.
  • Check for accuracy: Double-check all citations to ensure accuracy, including correct spelling of author names and publication information.
  • Use reputable sources: When selecting sources to cite, choose reputable and authoritative sources. Avoid sources that are biased or unreliable.
  • Include all sources: Make sure to include all sources used in the research, including those that were not directly quoted but still informed the work.
  • Use online tools : There are online tools available (e.g., citation generators) that can help with formatting and organizing references.

Purpose of References in Research

References in research serve several purposes:

  • To give credit to the original authors or sources of information used in the research. It is important to acknowledge the work of others and avoid plagiarism.
  • To provide evidence for the claims made in the research. References can support the arguments, hypotheses, or conclusions presented in the research by citing relevant studies, data, or theories.
  • To allow readers to find and verify the sources used in the research. References provide the necessary information for readers to locate and access the sources cited in the research, which allows them to evaluate the quality and reliability of the information presented.
  • To situate the research within the broader context of the field. References can show how the research builds on or contributes to the existing body of knowledge, and can help readers to identify gaps in the literature that the research seeks to address.

Importance of References in Research

References play an important role in research for several reasons:

  • Credibility : By citing authoritative sources, references lend credibility to the research and its claims. They provide evidence that the research is based on a sound foundation of knowledge and has been carefully researched.
  • Avoidance of Plagiarism : References help researchers avoid plagiarism by giving credit to the original authors or sources of information. This is important for ethical reasons and also to avoid legal repercussions.
  • Reproducibility : References allow others to reproduce the research by providing detailed information on the sources used. This is important for verification of the research and for others to build on the work.
  • Context : References provide context for the research by situating it within the broader body of knowledge in the field. They help researchers to understand where their work fits in and how it builds on or contributes to existing knowledge.
  • Evaluation : References provide a means for others to evaluate the research by allowing them to assess the quality and reliability of the sources used.

Advantages of References in Research

There are several advantages of including references in research:

  • Acknowledgment of Sources: Including references gives credit to the authors or sources of information used in the research. This is important to acknowledge the original work and avoid plagiarism.
  • Evidence and Support : References can provide evidence to support the arguments, hypotheses, or conclusions presented in the research. This can add credibility and strength to the research.
  • Reproducibility : References provide the necessary information for others to reproduce the research. This is important for the verification of the research and for others to build on the work.
  • Context : References can help to situate the research within the broader body of knowledge in the field. This helps researchers to understand where their work fits in and how it builds on or contributes to existing knowledge.
  • Evaluation : Including references allows others to evaluate the research by providing a means to assess the quality and reliability of the sources used.
  • Ongoing Conversation: References allow researchers to engage in ongoing conversations and debates within their fields. They can show how the research builds on or contributes to the existing body of knowledge.

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Table of Contents

Every scientific paper builds on previous research – even if it’s in a new field, related studies will have preceded and informed it. In peer-reviewed articles, authors must give credit to this previous research, through citations and references. Not only does this show clearly where the current research came from, but it also helps readers understand the content of the paper better.

There is no optimum number of references for an academic article but depending on the subject you could be dealing with more than 100 different papers, conference reports, video articles, medical guidelines or any number of other resources.

That’s a lot of content to manage. Before submitting your manuscript, this needs to be checked, cross-references in the text and the list, organized and formatted.

The exact content and format of the citations and references in your paper will depend on the journal you aim to publish in, so the first step is to check the journal’s Guide for Authors before you submit.

There are two main points to pay attention to – consistency and accuracy. When you go through your manuscript to edit or proofread it, look closely at the citations within the text. Are they all the same? For example, if the journal prefers the citations to be in the format (name, year), make sure they’re all the same: (Smith, 2016).

Your citations must also be accurate and complete. Do they match your references list? Each citation should be included in the list, so cross-checking is important. It’s also common for journals to prefer that most, if not all, of the articles listed in your references be cited within the text – after all, these should be studies that contributed to the knowledge underpinning your work, not just your bedtime reading. So go through them carefully, noting any missing references or citations and filling the gaps.

Each journal has its own requirements when it comes to the content and format of references, as well as where and how you should include them in your submission, so double-check before you hit send!

In general, a reference will include authors’ names and initials, the title of the article, name of the journal, volume and issue, date, page numbers and DOI. On ScienceDirect, articles are linked to their original source (if also published on ScienceDirect) or to their Scopus record, so including the DOI can help link to the correct article.

A spotless reference list

Luckily, compiling and editing the references in your scientific manuscript can be easy – and it no longer has to be manual. Management tools like Mendeley can keep track of all your references, letting you share them with your collaborators. With the Word plugin, it’s possible to select the right citation style for the journal you’re submitting to and the tool will format your references automatically.

Like with any other part of your manuscript, it’s important to make sure your reference list has been checked and edited. Elsevier Author Services Language Editing can help, with professional manuscript editing that will help make sure your references don’t hold you back from publication.

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Reference list: common reference list examples, article (with doi).

Alvarez, E., & Tippins, S. (2019). Socialization agents that Puerto Rican college students use to make financial decisions. Journal of Social Change , 11 (1), 75–85. https://doi.org/10.5590/JOSC.2019.11.1.07

Laplante, J. P., & Nolin, C. (2014). Consultas and socially responsible investing in Guatemala: A case study examining Maya perspectives on the Indigenous right to free, prior, and informed consent. Society & Natural Resources , 27 , 231–248. https://doi.org/10.1080/08941920.2013.861554

Use the DOI number for the source whenever one is available. DOI stands for "digital object identifier," a number specific to the article that can help others locate the source. In APA 7, format the DOI as a web address. Active hyperlinks for DOIs and URLs should be used for documents meant for screen reading. Present these hyperlinks in blue and underlined text (the default formatting in Microsoft Word), although plain black text is also acceptable. Be consistent in your formatting choice for DOIs and URLs throughout your reference list. Also see our Quick Answer FAQ, "Can I use the DOI format provided by library databases?"

Jerrentrup, A., Mueller, T., Glowalla, U., Herder, M., Henrichs, N., Neubauer, A., & Schaefer, J. R. (2018). Teaching medicine with the help of “Dr. House.” PLoS ONE , 13 (3), Article e0193972. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0193972

For journal articles that are assigned article numbers rather than page ranges, include the article number in place of the page range.
For more on citing electronic resources, see  Electronic Sources References .

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Article (Without DOI)

Found in a common academic research database or in print.

Casler , T. (2020). Improving the graduate nursing experience through support on a social media platform. MEDSURG Nursing , 29 (2), 83–87.

If an article does not have a DOI and you retrieved it from a common academic research database through the university library, there is no need to include any additional electronic retrieval information. The reference list entry looks like the entry for a print copy of the article. (This format differs from APA 6 guidelines that recommended including the URL of a journal's homepage when the DOI was not available.) Note that APA 7 has additional guidance on reference list entries for articles found only in specific databases or archives such as Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, UpToDate, ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global, and university archives. See APA 7, Section 9.30 for more information.

Found on an Open Access Website

Eaton, T. V., & Akers, M. D. (2007). Whistleblowing and good governance. CPA Journal , 77 (6), 66–71. http://archives.cpajournal.com/2007/607/essentials/p58.htm

Provide the direct web address/URL to a journal article found on the open web, often on an open access journal's website. In APA 7, active hyperlinks for DOIs and URLs should be used for documents meant for screen reading. Present these hyperlinks in blue and underlined text (the default formatting in Microsoft Word), although plain black text is also acceptable. Be consistent in your formatting choice for DOIs and URLs throughout your reference list.

Weinstein, J. A. (2010).  Social change  (3rd ed.). Rowman & Littlefield.

If the book has an edition number, include it in parentheses after the title of the book. If the book does not list any edition information, do not include an edition number. The edition number is not italicized.

American Nurses Association. (2015). Nursing: Scope and standards of practice (3rd ed.).

If the author and publisher are the same, only include the author in its regular place and omit the publisher.

Lencioni, P. (2012). The advantage: Why organizational health trumps everything else in business . Jossey-Bass. https://amzn.to/343XPSJ

As a change from APA 6 to APA 7, it is no longer necessary to include the ebook format in the title. However, if you listened to an audiobook and the content differs from the text version (e.g., abridged content) or your discussion highlights elements of the audiobook (e.g., narrator's performance), then note that it is an audiobook in the title element in brackets. For ebooks and online audiobooks, also include the DOI number (if available) or nondatabase URL but leave out the electronic retrieval element if the ebook was found in a common academic research database, as with journal articles. APA 7 allows for the shortening of long DOIs and URLs, as shown in this example. See APA 7, Section 9.36 for more information.

Chapter in an Edited Book

Poe, M. (2017). Reframing race in teaching writing across the curriculum. In F. Condon & V. A. Young (Eds.), Performing antiracist pedagogy in rhetoric, writing, and communication (pp. 87–105). University Press of Colorado.

Include the page numbers of the chapter in parentheses after the book title.

Christensen, L. (2001). For my people: Celebrating community through poetry. In B. Bigelow, B. Harvey, S. Karp, & L. Miller (Eds.), Rethinking our classrooms: Teaching for equity and justice (Vol. 2, pp. 16–17). Rethinking Schools.

Also include the volume number or edition number in the parenthetical information after the book title when relevant.

Freud, S. (1961). The ego and the id. In J. Strachey (Ed.),  The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud  (Vol. 19, pp. 3-66). Hogarth Press. (Original work published 1923)

When a text has been republished as part of an anthology collection, after the author’s name include the date of the version that was read. At the end of the entry, place the date of the original publication inside parenthesis along with the note “original work published.” For in-text citations of republished work, use both dates in the parenthetical citation, original date first with a slash separating the years, as in this example: Freud (1923/1961). For more information on reprinted or republished works, see APA 7, Sections 9.40-9.41.

Classroom Resources

Citing classroom resources.

If you need to cite content found in your online classroom, use the author (if there is one listed), the year of publication (if available), the title of the document, and the main URL of Walden classrooms. For example, you are citing study notes titled "Health Effects of Exposure to Forest Fires," but you do not know the author's name, your reference entry will look like this:

Health effects of exposure to forest fires [Lecture notes]. (2005). Walden University Canvas. https://waldenu.instructure.com

If you do know the author of the document, your reference will look like this:

Smith, A. (2005). Health effects of exposure to forest fires [PowerPoint slides]. Walden University Canvas. https://waldenu.instructure.com  

A few notes on citing course materials:

  • [Lecture notes]
  • [Course handout]
  • [Study notes]
  • It can be difficult to determine authorship of classroom documents. If an author is listed on the document, use that. If the resource is clearly a product of Walden (such as the course-based videos), use Walden University as the author. If you are unsure or if no author is indicated, place the title in the author spot, as above.
  • If you cannot determine a date of publication, you can use n.d. (for "no date") in place of the year.

Note:  The web location for Walden course materials is not directly retrievable without a password, and therefore, following APA guidelines, use the main URL for the class sites: https://class.waldenu.edu.

Citing Tempo Classroom Resources

Clear author: 

Smith, A. (2005). Health effects of exposure to forest fires [PowerPoint slides]. Walden University Brightspace. https://mytempo.waldenu.edu

Unclear author:

Health effects of exposure to forest fires [Lecture notes]. (2005). Walden University Brightspace. https://mytempo.waldenu.edu

Conference Sessions and Presentations

Feinman, Y. (2018, July 27). Alternative to proctoring in introductory statistics community college courses [Poster presentation]. Walden University Research Symposium, Minneapolis, MN, United States. https://scholarworks.waldenu.edu/symposium2018/23/

Torgerson, K., Parrill, J., & Haas, A. (2019, April 5-9). Tutoring strategies for online students [Conference session]. The Higher Learning Commission Annual Conference, Chicago, IL, United States. http://onlinewritingcenters.org/scholarship/torgerson-parrill-haas-2019/

Dictionary Entry

Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Leadership. In Merriam-Webster.com dictionary . Retrieved May 28, 2020, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/leadership

When constructing a reference for an entry in a dictionary or other reference work that has no byline (i.e., no named individual authors), use the name of the group—the institution, company, or organization—as author (e.g., Merriam Webster, American Psychological Association, etc.). The name of the entry goes in the title position, followed by "In" and the italicized name of the reference work (e.g., Merriam-Webster.com dictionary , APA dictionary of psychology ). In this instance, APA 7 recommends including a retrieval date as well for this online source since the contents of the page change over time. End the reference entry with the specific URL for the defined word.

Discussion Board Post

Osborne, C. S. (2010, June 29). Re: Environmental responsibility [Discussion post]. Walden University Canvas.  https://waldenu.instructure.com  

Dissertations or Theses

Retrieved From a Database

Nalumango, K. (2019). Perceptions about the asylum-seeking process in the United States after 9/11 (Publication No. 13879844) [Doctoral dissertation, Walden University]. ProQuest Dissertations and Theses.

Retrieved From an Institutional or Personal Website

Evener. J. (2018). Organizational learning in libraries at for-profit colleges and universities [Doctoral dissertation, Walden University]. ScholarWorks. https://scholarworks.waldenu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=6606&context=dissertations

Unpublished Dissertation or Thesis

Kirwan, J. G. (2005). An experimental study of the effects of small-group, face-to-face facilitated dialogues on the development of self-actualization levels: A movement towards fully functional persons [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. Saybrook Graduate School and Research Center.

For further examples and information, see APA 7, Section 10.6.

Legal Material

For legal references, APA follows the recommendations of The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation , so if you have any questions beyond the examples provided in APA, seek out that resource as well.

Court Decisions

Reference format:

Name v. Name, Volume Reporter Page (Court Date). URL

Sample reference entry:

Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954). https://www.oyez.org/cases/1940-1955/347us483

Sample citation:

In Brown v. Board of Education (1954), the Supreme Court ruled racial segregation in schools unconstitutional.

Note: Italicize the case name when it appears in the text of your paper.

Name of Act, Title Source § Section Number (Year). URL

Sample reference entry for a federal statute:

Individuals With Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. § 1400 et seq. (2004). https://www.congress.gov/108/plaws/publ446/PLAW-108publ446.pdf

Sample reference entry for a state statute:

Minnesota Nurse Practice Act, Minn. Stat. §§ 148.171 et seq. (2019). https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/148.171

Sample citation: Minnesota nurses must maintain current registration in order to practice (Minnesota Nurse Practice Act, 2010).

Note: The § symbol stands for "section." Use §§ for sections (plural). To find this symbol in Microsoft Word, go to "Insert" and click on Symbol." Look in the Latin 1-Supplement subset. Note: U.S.C. stands for "United States Code." Note: The Latin abbreviation " et seq. " means "and what follows" and is used when the act includes the cited section and ones that follow. Note: List the chapter first followed by the section or range of sections.

Unenacted Bills and Resolutions

(Those that did not pass and become law)

Title [if there is one], bill or resolution number, xxx Cong. (year). URL

Sample reference entry for Senate bill:

Anti-Phishing Act, S. 472, 109th Cong. (2005). https://www.congress.gov/bill/109th-congress/senate-bill/472

Sample reference entry for House of Representatives resolution:

Anti-Phishing Act, H.R. 1099, 109th Cong. (2005). https://www.congress.gov/bill/109th-congress/house-bill/1099

The Anti-Phishing Act (2005) proposed up to 5 years prison time for people running Internet scams.

These are the three legal areas you may be most apt to cite in your scholarly work. For more examples and explanation, see APA 7, Chapter 11.

Magazine Article

Clay, R. (2008, June). Science vs. ideology: Psychologists fight back about the misuse of research. Monitor on Psychology , 39 (6). https://www.apa.org/monitor/2008/06/ideology

Note that for citations, include only the year: Clay (2008). For magazine articles retrieved from a common academic research database, leave out the URL. For magazine articles from an online news website that is not an online version of a print magazine, follow the format for a webpage reference list entry.

Newspaper Article (Retrieved Online)

Baker, A. (2014, May 7). Connecticut students show gains in national tests. New York Times . http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/08/nyregion/national-assessment-of-educational-progress-results-in-Connecticut-and-New-Jersey.html

Include the full date in the format Year, Month Day. Do not include a retrieval date for periodical sources found on websites. Note that for citations, include only the year: Baker (2014). For newspaper articles retrieved from a common academic research database, leave out the URL. For newspaper articles from an online news website that is not an online version of a print newspaper, follow the format for a webpage reference list entry.

Online Video/Webcast

Walden University. (2013).  An overview of learning  [Video]. Walden University Canvas.  https://waldenu.instructure.com  

Use this format for online videos such as Walden videos in classrooms. Most of our classroom videos are produced by Walden University, which will be listed as the author in your reference and citation. Note: Some examples of audiovisual materials in the APA manual show the word “Producer” in parentheses after the producer/author area. In consultation with the editors of the APA manual, we have determined that parenthetical is not necessary for the videos in our courses. The manual itself is unclear on the matter, however, so either approach should be accepted. Note that the speaker in the video does not appear in the reference list entry, but you may want to mention that person in your text. For instance, if you are viewing a video where Tobias Ball is the speaker, you might write the following: Tobias Ball stated that APA guidelines ensure a consistent presentation of information in student papers (Walden University, 2013). For more information on citing the speaker in a video, see our page on Common Citation Errors .

Taylor, R. [taylorphd07]. (2014, February 27). Scales of measurement [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PDsMUlexaMY

Walden University Academic Skills Center. (2020, April 15). One-way ANCOVA: Introduction [Video]. YouTube. https://youtu.be/_XnNDQ5CNW8

For videos from streaming sites, use the person or organization who uploaded the video in the author space to ensure retrievability, whether or not that person is the speaker in the video. A username can be provided in square brackets. As a change from APA 6 to APA 7, include the publisher after the title, and do not use "Retrieved from" before the URL. See APA 7, Section 10.12 for more information and examples.

See also reference list entry formats for TED Talks .

Technical and Research Reports

Edwards, C. (2015). Lighting levels for isolated intersections: Leading to safety improvements (Report No. MnDOT 2015-05). Center for Transportation Studies. http://www.cts.umn.edu/Publications/ResearchReports/reportdetail.html?id=2402

Technical and research reports by governmental agencies and other research institutions usually follow a different publication process than scholarly, peer-reviewed journals. However, they present original research and are often useful for research papers. Sometimes, researchers refer to these types of reports as gray literature , and white papers are a type of this literature. See APA 7, Section 10.4 for more information.

Reference list entires for TED Talks follow the usual guidelines for multimedia content found online. There are two common places to find TED talks online, with slightly different reference list entry formats for each.

TED Talk on the TED website

If you find the TED Talk on the TED website, follow the format for an online video on an organizational website:

Owusu-Kesse, K. (2020, June). 5 needs that any COVID-19 response should meet [Video]. TED Conferences. https://www.ted.com/talks/kwame_owusu_kesse_5_needs_that_any_covid_19_response_should_meet

The speaker is the author in the reference list entry if the video is posted on the TED website. For citations, use the speaker's surname.

TED Talk on YouTube

If you find the TED Talk on YouTube or another streaming video website, follow the usual format for streaming video sites:

TED. (2021, February 5). The shadow pandemic of domestic violence during COVID-19 | Kemi DaSilvalbru [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGdID_ICFII

TED is the author in the reference list entry if the video is posted on YouTube since it is the channel on which the video is posted. For citations, use TED as the author.

Walden University Course Catalog

To include the Walden course catalog in your reference list, use this format:

Walden University. (2020). 2019-2020 Walden University catalog . https://catalog.waldenu.edu/index.php

If you cite from a specific portion of the catalog in your paper, indicate the appropriate section and paragraph number in your text:

...which reflects the commitment to social change expressed in Walden University's mission statement (Walden University, 2020, Vision, Mission, and Goals section, para. 2).

And in the reference list:

Walden University. (2020). Vision, mission, and goals. In 2019-2020 Walden University catalog. https://catalog.waldenu.edu/content.php?catoid=172&navoid=59420&hl=vision&returnto=search

Vartan, S. (2018, January 30). Why vacations matter for your health . CNN. https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/why-vacations-matter/index.html

For webpages on the open web, include the author, date, webpage title, organization/site name, and URL. (There is a slight variation for online versions of print newspapers or magazines. For those sources, follow the models in the previous sections of this page.)

American Federation of Teachers. (n.d.). Community schools . http://www.aft.org/issues/schoolreform/commschools/index.cfm

If there is no specified author, then use the organization’s name as the author. In such a case, there is no need to repeat the organization's name after the title.

In APA 7, active hyperlinks for DOIs and URLs should be used for documents meant for screen reading. Present these hyperlinks in blue and underlined text (the default formatting in Microsoft Word), although plain black text is also acceptable. Be consistent in your formatting choice for DOIs and URLs throughout your reference list.

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  • Referencing

A Quick Guide to Harvard Referencing | Citation Examples

Published on 14 February 2020 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on 15 September 2023.

Referencing is an important part of academic writing. It tells your readers what sources you’ve used and how to find them.

Harvard is the most common referencing style used in UK universities. In Harvard style, the author and year are cited in-text, and full details of the source are given in a reference list .

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Table of contents

Harvard in-text citation, creating a harvard reference list, harvard referencing examples, referencing sources with no author or date, frequently asked questions about harvard referencing.

A Harvard in-text citation appears in brackets beside any quotation or paraphrase of a source. It gives the last name of the author(s) and the year of publication, as well as a page number or range locating the passage referenced, if applicable:

Note that ‘p.’ is used for a single page, ‘pp.’ for multiple pages (e.g. ‘pp. 1–5’).

An in-text citation usually appears immediately after the quotation or paraphrase in question. It may also appear at the end of the relevant sentence, as long as it’s clear what it refers to.

When your sentence already mentions the name of the author, it should not be repeated in the citation:

Sources with multiple authors

When you cite a source with up to three authors, cite all authors’ names. For four or more authors, list only the first name, followed by ‘ et al. ’:

Sources with no page numbers

Some sources, such as websites , often don’t have page numbers. If the source is a short text, you can simply leave out the page number. With longer sources, you can use an alternate locator such as a subheading or paragraph number if you need to specify where to find the quote:

Multiple citations at the same point

When you need multiple citations to appear at the same point in your text – for example, when you refer to several sources with one phrase – you can present them in the same set of brackets, separated by semicolons. List them in order of publication date:

Multiple sources with the same author and date

If you cite multiple sources by the same author which were published in the same year, it’s important to distinguish between them in your citations. To do this, insert an ‘a’ after the year in the first one you reference, a ‘b’ in the second, and so on:

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A bibliography or reference list appears at the end of your text. It lists all your sources in alphabetical order by the author’s last name, giving complete information so that the reader can look them up if necessary.

The reference entry starts with the author’s last name followed by initial(s). Only the first word of the title is capitalised (as well as any proper nouns).

Harvard reference list example

Sources with multiple authors in the reference list

As with in-text citations, up to three authors should be listed; when there are four or more, list only the first author followed by ‘ et al. ’:

Reference list entries vary according to source type, since different information is relevant for different sources. Formats and examples for the most commonly used source types are given below.

  • Entire book
  • Book chapter
  • Translated book
  • Edition of a book

Journal articles

  • Print journal
  • Online-only journal with DOI
  • Online-only journal with no DOI
  • General web page
  • Online article or blog
  • Social media post

Sometimes you won’t have all the information you need for a reference. This section covers what to do when a source lacks a publication date or named author.

No publication date

When a source doesn’t have a clear publication date – for example, a constantly updated reference source like Wikipedia or an obscure historical document which can’t be accurately dated – you can replace it with the words ‘no date’:

Note that when you do this with an online source, you should still include an access date, as in the example.

When a source lacks a clearly identified author, there’s often an appropriate corporate source – the organisation responsible for the source – whom you can credit as author instead, as in the Google and Wikipedia examples above.

When that’s not the case, you can just replace it with the title of the source in both the in-text citation and the reference list:

Harvard referencing uses an author–date system. Sources are cited by the author’s last name and the publication year in brackets. Each Harvard in-text citation corresponds to an entry in the alphabetised reference list at the end of the paper.

Vancouver referencing uses a numerical system. Sources are cited by a number in parentheses or superscript. Each number corresponds to a full reference at the end of the paper.

A Harvard in-text citation should appear in brackets every time you quote, paraphrase, or refer to information from a source.

The citation can appear immediately after the quotation or paraphrase, or at the end of the sentence. If you’re quoting, place the citation outside of the quotation marks but before any other punctuation like a comma or full stop.

In Harvard referencing, up to three author names are included in an in-text citation or reference list entry. When there are four or more authors, include only the first, followed by ‘ et al. ’

Though the terms are sometimes used interchangeably, there is a difference in meaning:

  • A reference list only includes sources cited in the text – every entry corresponds to an in-text citation .
  • A bibliography also includes other sources which were consulted during the research but not cited.

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Caulfield, J. (2023, September 15). A Quick Guide to Harvard Referencing | Citation Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved 22 February 2024, from https://www.scribbr.co.uk/referencing/harvard-style/

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how to write references in a research

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Cite your sources

  • is the right thing to do  to give credit to those who had the idea
  • shows that you have read and understand  what experts have had to say about your topic
  • helps people find the sources  that you used in case they want to read more about the topic
  • provides   evidence  for your arguments
  • is professional and  standard practice   for students and scholars

What is a Citation?

A citation identifies for the reader the original source for an idea, information, or image that is referred to in a work.

  • In the body of a paper, the  in-text citation  acknowledges the source of information used.
  • At the end of a paper, the citations are compiled on a  References  or  Works Cited  list. A basic citation includes the author, title, and publication information of the source. 

Citation basics

From:  Lemieux  Library,  University  of Seattle 

Why Should You Cite?

Quoting Are you quoting two or more consecutive words from a source? Then the original source should be cited and the words or phrase placed in quotes. 

Paraphrasing If an idea or information comes from another source,  even if you put it in your own words , you still need to credit the source.  General vs. Unfamiliar Knowledge You do not need to cite material which is accepted common knowledge. If in doubt whether your information is common knowledge or not, cite it. Formats We usually think of books and articles. However, if you use material from web sites, films, music, graphs, tables, etc. you'll also need to cite these as well.

Plagiarism is presenting the words or ideas of someone else as your own without proper acknowledgment of the source. When you work on a research paper and use supporting material from works by others, it's okay to quote people and use their ideas, but you do need to correctly credit them. Even when you summarize or paraphrase information found in books, articles, or Web pages, you must acknowledge the original author.

Citation Style Help

Helpful links:

  • MLA ,  Works Cited : A Quick Guide (a template of core elements)
  • CSE  (Council of Science Editors)

For additional writing resources specific to styles listed here visit the  Purdue OWL Writing Lab

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Quick guide to Harvard referencing (Cite Them Right)

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how to write references in a research

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There are different versions of the Harvard referencing style. This guide is a quick introduction to the commonly-used Cite Them Right version. You will find further guidance available through the OU Library on the Cite Them Right Database .

For help and support with referencing and the full Cite Them Right guide, have a look at the Library’s page on referencing and plagiarism . If you need guidance referencing OU module material you can check out which sections of Cite Them Right are recommended when referencing physical and online module material .

This guide does not apply to OU Law undergraduate students . If you are studying a module beginning with W1xx, W2xx or W3xx, you should refer to the Quick guide to Cite Them Right referencing for Law modules .

Table of contents

In-text citations and full references.

  • Secondary referencing
  • Page numbers
  • Citing multiple sources published in the same year by the same author

Full reference examples

Referencing consists of two elements:

  • in-text citations, which are inserted in the body of your text and are included in the word count. An in-text citation gives the author(s) and publication date of a source you are referring to. If the publication date is not given, the phrase 'no date' is used instead of a date. If using direct quotations or you refer to a specific section in the source you also need the page number/s if available, or paragraph number for web pages.
  • full references, which are given in alphabetical order in reference list at the end of your work and are not included in the word count. Full references give full bibliographical information for all the sources you have referred to in the body of your text.

To see a reference list and intext citations check out this example assignment on Cite Them Right .

Difference between reference list and bibliography

a reference list only includes sources you have referred to in the body of your text

a bibliography includes sources you have referred to in the body of your text AND sources that were part of your background reading that you did not use in your assignment

Back to top

Examples of in-text citations

You need to include an in-text citation wherever you quote or paraphrase from a source. An in-text citation consists of the last name of the author(s), the year of publication, and a page number if relevant. There are a number of ways of incorporating in-text citations into your work - some examples are provided below. Alternatively you can see examples of setting out in-text citations in Cite Them Right .

Note: When referencing a chapter of an edited book, your in-text citation should give the author(s) of the chapter.

Online module materials

(Includes written online module activities, audio-visual material such as online tutorials, recordings or videos).

When referencing material from module websites, the date of publication is the year you started studying the module.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication/presentation) 'Title of item'. Module code: Module title . Available at: URL of VLE (Accessed: date).

OR, if there is no named author:

The Open University (Year of publication/presentation) 'Title of item'. Module code: Module title . Available at: URL of VLE (Accessed: date).

Rietdorf, K. and Bootman, M. (2022) 'Topic 3: Rare diseases'. S290: Investigating human health and disease . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=1967195 (Accessed: 24 January 2023).

The Open University (2022) ‘3.1 The purposes of childhood and youth research’. EK313: Issues in research with children and young people . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=1949633&section=1.3 (Accessed: 24 January 2023).

You can also use this template to reference videos and audio that are hosted on your module website:

The Open University (2022) ‘Video 2.7 An example of a Frith-Happé animation’. SK298: Brain, mind and mental health . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=2013014&section=4.9.6 (Accessed: 22 November 2022).

The Open University (2022) ‘Audio 2 Interview with Richard Sorabji (Part 2)’. A113: Revolutions . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=1960941&section=5.6 (Accessed: 22 November 2022).

Note: if a complete journal article has been uploaded to a module website, or if you have seen an article referred to on the website and then accessed the original version, reference the original journal article, and do not mention the module materials. If only an extract from an article is included in your module materials that you want to reference, you should use secondary referencing, with the module materials as the 'cited in' source, as described above.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of message', Title of discussion board , in Module code: Module title . Available at: URL of VLE (Accessed: date).

Fitzpatrick, M. (2022) ‘A215 - presentation of TMAs', Tutor group discussion & Workbook activities , in A215: Creative writing . Available at: https://learn2.open.ac.uk/mod/forumng/discuss.php?d=4209566 (Accessed: 24 January 2022).

Note: When an ebook looks like a printed book, with publication details and pagination, reference as a printed book.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) Title . Edition if later than first. Place of publication: publisher. Series and volume number if relevant.

For ebooks that do not contain print publication details

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) Title of book . Available at: DOI or URL (Accessed: date).

Example with one author:

Bell, J. (2014) Doing your research project . Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Adams, D. (1979) The hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy . Available at: http://www.amazon.co.uk/kindle-ebooks (Accessed: 23 June 2021).

Example with two or three authors:

Goddard, J. and Barrett, S. (2015) The health needs of young people leaving care . Norwich: University of East Anglia, School of Social Work and Psychosocial Studies.

Example with four or more authors:

Young, H.D. et al. (2015) Sears and Zemansky's university physics . San Francisco, CA: Addison-Wesley.

Note: You can choose one or other method to reference four or more authors (unless your School requires you to name all authors in your reference list) and your approach should be consistent.

Note: Books that have an editor, or editors, where each chapter is written by a different author or authors.

Surname of chapter author, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of chapter or section', in Initial. Surname of book editor (ed.) Title of book . Place of publication: publisher, Page reference.

Franklin, A.W. (2012) 'Management of the problem', in S.M. Smith (ed.) The maltreatment of children . Lancaster: MTP, pp. 83–95.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Journal , volume number (issue number), page reference.

If accessed online:

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Journal , volume number (issue number), page reference. Available at: DOI or URL (if required) (Accessed: date).

Shirazi, T. (2010) 'Successful teaching placements in secondary schools: achieving QTS practical handbooks', European Journal of Teacher Education , 33(3), pp. 323–326.

Shirazi, T. (2010) 'Successful teaching placements in secondary schools: achieving QTS practical handbooks', European Journal of Teacher Education , 33(3), pp. 323–326. Available at: https://libezproxy.open.ac.uk/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/log... (Accessed: 27 January 2023).

Barke, M. and Mowl, G. (2016) 'Málaga – a failed resort of the early twentieth century?', Journal of Tourism History , 2(3), pp. 187–212. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/1755182X.2010.523145

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Newspaper , Day and month, Page reference.

Surname, Initial. (Year of publication) 'Title of article', Title of Newspaper , Day and month, Page reference if available. Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Mansell, W. and Bloom, A. (2012) ‘£10,000 carrot to tempt physics experts’, The Guardian , 20 June, p. 5.

Roberts, D. and Ackerman, S. (2013) 'US draft resolution allows Obama 90 days for military action against Syria', The Guardian , 4 September. Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/04/syria-strikes-draft-resolut... (Accessed: 9 September 2015).

Surname, Initial. (Year that the site was published/last updated) Title of web page . Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Organisation (Year that the page was last updated) Title of web page . Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Robinson, J. (2007) Social variation across the UK . Available at: https://www.bl.uk/british-accents-and-dialects/articles/social-variation... (Accessed: 21 November 2021).

The British Psychological Society (2018) Code of Ethics and Conduct . Available at: https://www.bps.org.uk/news-and-policy/bps-code-ethics-and-conduct (Accessed: 22 March 2019).

Note: Cite Them Right Online offers guidance for referencing webpages that do not include authors' names and dates. However, be extra vigilant about the suitability of such webpages.

Surname, Initial. (Year) Title of photograph . Available at: URL (Accessed: date).

Kitton, J. (2013) Golden sunset . Available at: https://www.jameskittophotography.co.uk/photo_8692150.html (Accessed: 21 November 2021).

stanitsa_dance (2021) Cossack dance ensemble . Available at: https://www.instagram.com/p/COI_slphWJ_/ (Accessed: 13 June 2023).

Note: If no title can be found then replace it with a short description.

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How to Write an APA Style References Page

Last Updated: March 7, 2023 Fact Checked

This article was co-authored by Michelle Golden, PhD . Michelle Golden is an English teacher in Athens, Georgia. She received her MA in Language Arts Teacher Education in 2008 and received her PhD in English from Georgia State University in 2015. There are 13 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 915,812 times.

Once you finish writing a research paper, you will need to cite the sources you used to do your research. How you format your Works Cited page depend on the style guidelines you are required to use. The American Psychological Association (APA) citation style is primarily used in the social sciences. This format differs from the Modern Language Association (MLA) style because it emphasizes the date by placing it earlier in the citation, and it helps reduce bias by using only the last names and first initials of the author, thereby removing gender from the author’s name.

Creating APA Style References Manually

Step 1 List the author’s last name.

  • Example of one author: Krauss, L. M. (1993).
  • Example of two authors: Wegener, D. T., & Petty, R. E. (1994).
  • Example of three or more authors: Kernis, M. H., Cornell, D. P., Sun, C. R., Berry, A., Harlow, T., & Bach, J. S. (1993).
  • Example of more than seven authors: Miller, F. H., Choi, M. J., Angeli, L. L., Harland, A. A., Stamos, J. A., Thomas, S. T., . . . Rubin, L. H. (2009). Book title. New York, NY: Basic Books.

Step 2 List the publication date.

  • Example, book: (1999).
  • Example, newspaper, magazine, newsletter: (1993, June).
  • Example, daily or weekly periodicals: (1994, September 28).
  • Example, for a work with no date given: (n.d.)

Step 3 Enter the title of the source.

  • Italicize book titles. For example, Call of the wild.
  • Do not italicize journal, newspaper, or magazine titles. Just include these as normal text. For example, “Making the grade in chemistry: A story of trial and error.”

Step 4 Include the publisher's location and name.

  • Example: Boston, MA: Random House.
  • Example: New York, NY: Scribner.
  • Example: Palmerston North, New Zealand: Dunmore Press.

Step 5 Write out publication titles in full.

  • For example, ReCall instead of RECALL , and Knowledge Management Research & Practice, not Knowledge Management Research and Practice.
  • Use the ampersand if the journal does, instead of spelling out the word and.

Step 6 Add the volume, issue, and page numbers for periodicals.

  • Title of Periodical, volume number (issue number), pages referenced.
  • For example, Psychology Today, 72 (3), 64-84 or The Statesman Journal , 59(4), 286-295.

Step 7 Add the URL for online publications.

  • Example: Eid, M., & Langeheine, R. (1999). The measurement of consistency and occasion specificity with latent class models: A new model and its application to the measurement of affect. Psychological Methods, 4, 100-116. Retrieved from http: // www.apa.org/journals/exampleurl
  • You do not need to include your date of access for APA references.

Creating APA References with an Online Generator

Step 1 Choose an online generator.

  • Some generators require you to supply your email address and they will send you the citations. It's best to avoid these, because they may sell your information to businesses that will clog your inbox with spam.
  • Many searchable library databases also provide citations in multiple styles, such as EBSCO. If you are using your university library’s databases , then you should have the option of getting an APA style citation for the source from the article’s page in the database.
  • Just remember to check any references that you get from an online generator for accuracy because they may have errors.

Step 2 Select auto-fill or manual-entry mode.

  • The auto-fill method will supply a lot of information instantly, which you will then verify to make sure it's correct.
  • The manual entry method will give you a form to complete yourself, and you will enter the appropriate author names, dates, and other relevant information manually.
  • Make sure to select the type of work you are citing. The BibMe generator has five main boxes: Journal, Website, Book, Video, and Other. Click on the box that corresponds to the type of work you need to cite. [12] X Research source

Step 3 Enter the title or url.

  • For a journal, enter the title of the journal.
  • For a website, enter the URL or a keyword. Generally, using the url for the source will get more accurate results.
  • For a book, enter the book title, author's name, or ISBN. You can find the ISBN on the book jacket, usually next to the price and the barcode. The ISBN will provide the most complete information.
  • For a video, enter the URL or a major keyword. The URL will yield more specific results.
  • If you choose “Other,” you will see a long list of alternative formats to choose from. Select the one that is appropriate (e.g., Magazine Article, Blog/Podcast, Painting/Artwork), and follow the prompts to enter the publication details manually.

Step 4 Locate the correct work from the list provided.

  • If you supply specific information (such as a URL or ISBN), this will be a short list.
  • If you enter less specific information (such as a keyword), you will get a longer list. Your source may or may not be included, depending on whether the generator located it. If your source is not on the list, then try supplying more specific information, or using the manual-fill entry mode.
  • If you enter a common book title, then you will see a list of options. Check the author and date to be sure you're choosing the right one. For example, the book title Nemesis will return a list of 20 different books, each written by a different author.

Step 5 Click on the appropriate book title.

  • Your references should always include title, author, publication date, publication location, and publisher. If any of these are missing, then you'll need to refer to the work itself to find that information.

Step 6 Click on “Create Citation.”

  • Copy and paste the generated citation if you want to add it to your references manually.
  • Continue to enter more works if you want the generator to compile an alphabetized reference list of all your references.

Step 7 Save your citations as you go.

  • Check for misspellings or glaring omissions, such as missing dates or author names.
  • Check to be sure you have included every source you wanted to include.

Formatting and Ordering Your References

Step 1 Create your “References” page.

  • Do not use bold, italics, or quotation marks on the word “References.”
  • Double space the entire “References” page.
  • Do not add an extra line between the title '”References” and your first reference item. [19] X Research source

Step 2 Use hanging indentations.

  • To set your indentations to hanging, open the “Paragraph” dialog box by clicking the small arrow to the right of “Paragraph” near the top of your MS Word document.
  • After the box opens, look for the section called “Indentation.”
  • Click on the drop down menu called “Special” that is in this section and select “Hanging.”
  • Your entries will now automatically have hanging indentations.

Step 3 Alphabetize your sources.

  • Alphabetize letter by letter. Remember that “nothing precedes something,” or in other words, the shorter version of two similar names should come first. For example, Brown, J. R. would come before Browning, A. R.
  • Alphabetize the prefixes M', Mc, and Mac exactly as they are shown. Do not alphabetize them as if they were all spelled out (Mac).
  • Ignore apostrophes in names. For example, MacNeil would come before M'Carthy.

Step 4 Order titles by the same author chronologically.

  • List one-author entries before multiple-author entries, when the first author is the same. For example, “Alleyne, R. L. (2001).” would come before “Alleyne, R. L. & Evans, A. J. (1999).”

Step 5 Alphabetize group authors as you would single authors.

  • For example, “American Society for the Prevention and Cruelty of Animals,” not “ASPCA”.
  • For example, “University of Michigan, Department of Psychology,” not “Department of Psychology, University of Michigan”.

Step 6 Use the book title if there is no author name.

  • For example, “ Merriam-Webster's collegiate dictionary (11th ed.). (2005) Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster."

APA Style Reference Page Template

how to write references in a research

Community Q&A

Community Answer

You Might Also Like

Write an Abstract in APA

  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa6_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/reference_list_author_authors.html
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/reference_list_basic_rules.html
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/reference_list_electronic_sources.html
  • ↑ http://www.waikato.ac.nz/library/study/referencing/styles/apa
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/reference_list_articles_in_periodicals.html
  • ↑ https://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/references/dois-urls
  • ↑ http://www.bibme.org/
  • ↑ http://www.citationmachine.net/
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/general_format.html
  • ↑ https://writingcenter.uagc.edu/format-your-reference-list
  • ↑ https://libguides.jcu.edu.au/apa/reference-list
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/reference_list_author_authors.html
  • ↑ https://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/references/missing-information

About This Article

Michelle Golden, PhD

To write an APA style "References" page, list your sources in alphabetical order on a new page at the end of your document. Seperate each source with a hanging indent, which will make the first line of each source flush with your left margin and every other line indented. For each source, include all required bibliographic information, like the author's name and the date of publication. You can use an APA citation generator, like Bibme or Citation Machine to help you format each citation correctly. To learn how to do manual citations in APA style, keep reading. Did this summary help you? Yes No

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Research Methodology and Scientific Writing pp 361–400 Cite as

References: How to Cite and List Correctly

  • C. George Thomas 2  
  • First Online: 25 February 2021

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When we write an essay, research paper, thesis, or book, it is normal to include information from the work of others or support our arguments by reference to other published works. All such academic documents draw heavily on the ideas and findings of previous and current researchers available through various sources such as books, journals, theses, newspapers, magazines, government reports, or Internet sources. In all these cases, proper referencing is essential in order to ensure easy retrieval of information. Referencing is the name given to the method of showing and acknowledging the sources from which the author has obtained ideas or information.

Everything deep is also simple and can be reproduced simply as long as its reference to the whole truth is maintained. But what matters is not what is witty but what is true. Albert Schweitzer (1875–1965)

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Thomas, C.G. (2021). References: How to Cite and List Correctly. In: Research Methodology and Scientific Writing . Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-64865-7_15

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Home / Guides / Citation Guides / How to Cite Sources

How to Cite Sources

Here is a complete list for how to cite sources. Most of these guides present citation guidance and examples in MLA, APA, and Chicago.

If you’re looking for general information on MLA or APA citations , the EasyBib Writing Center was designed for you! It has articles on what’s needed in an MLA in-text citation , how to format an APA paper, what an MLA annotated bibliography is, making an MLA works cited page, and much more!

MLA Format Citation Examples

The Modern Language Association created the MLA Style, currently in its 9th edition, to provide researchers with guidelines for writing and documenting scholarly borrowings.  Most often used in the humanities, MLA style (or MLA format ) has been adopted and used by numerous other disciplines, in multiple parts of the world.

MLA provides standard rules to follow so that most research papers are formatted in a similar manner. This makes it easier for readers to comprehend the information. The MLA in-text citation guidelines, MLA works cited standards, and MLA annotated bibliography instructions provide scholars with the information they need to properly cite sources in their research papers, articles, and assignments.

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APA Format Citation Examples

The American Psychological Association created the APA citation style in 1929 as a way to help psychologists, anthropologists, and even business managers establish one common way to cite sources and present content.

APA is used when citing sources for academic articles such as journals, and is intended to help readers better comprehend content, and to avoid language bias wherever possible. The APA style (or APA format ) is now in its 7th edition, and provides citation style guides for virtually any type of resource.

Chicago Style Citation Examples

The Chicago/Turabian style of citing sources is generally used when citing sources for humanities papers, and is best known for its requirement that writers place bibliographic citations at the bottom of a page (in Chicago-format footnotes ) or at the end of a paper (endnotes).

The Turabian and Chicago citation styles are almost identical, but the Turabian style is geared towards student published papers such as theses and dissertations, while the Chicago style provides guidelines for all types of publications. This is why you’ll commonly see Chicago style and Turabian style presented together. The Chicago Manual of Style is currently in its 17th edition, and Turabian’s A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations is in its 8th edition.

Citing Specific Sources or Events

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Additional FAQs

  • Citing Archived Contributors
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  • Citing a Source in a Foreign Language
  • Citing an Image
  • Citing a Song
  • Citing Special Contributors
  • Citing a Translated Article
  • Citing a Tweet

6 Interesting Citation Facts

The world of citations may seem cut and dry, but there’s more to them than just specific capitalization rules, MLA in-text citations , and other formatting specifications. Citations have been helping researches document their sources for hundreds of years, and are a great way to learn more about a particular subject area.

Ever wonder what sets all the different styles apart, or how they came to be in the first place? Read on for some interesting facts about citations!

1. There are Over 7,000 Different Citation Styles

You may be familiar with MLA and APA citation styles, but there are actually thousands of citation styles used for all different academic disciplines all across the world. Deciding which one to use can be difficult, so be sure to ask you instructor which one you should be using for your next paper.

2. Some Citation Styles are Named After People

While a majority of citation styles are named for the specific organizations that publish them (i.e. APA is published by the American Psychological Association, and MLA format is named for the Modern Language Association), some are actually named after individuals. The most well-known example of this is perhaps Turabian style, named for Kate L. Turabian, an American educator and writer. She developed this style as a condensed version of the Chicago Manual of Style in order to present a more concise set of rules to students.

3. There are Some Really Specific and Uniquely Named Citation Styles

How specific can citation styles get? The answer is very. For example, the “Flavour and Fragrance Journal” style is based on a bimonthly, peer-reviewed scientific journal published since 1985 by John Wiley & Sons. It publishes original research articles, reviews and special reports on all aspects of flavor and fragrance. Another example is “Nordic Pulp and Paper Research,” a style used by an international scientific magazine covering science and technology for the areas of wood or bio-mass constituents.

4. More citations were created on  EasyBib.com  in the first quarter of 2018 than there are people in California.

The US Census Bureau estimates that approximately 39.5 million people live in the state of California. Meanwhile, about 43 million citations were made on EasyBib from January to March of 2018. That’s a lot of citations.

5. “Citations” is a Word With a Long History

The word “citations” can be traced back literally thousands of years to the Latin word “citare” meaning “to summon, urge, call; put in sudden motion, call forward; rouse, excite.” The word then took on its more modern meaning and relevance to writing papers in the 1600s, where it became known as the “act of citing or quoting a passage from a book, etc.”

6. Citation Styles are Always Changing

The concept of citations always stays the same. It is a means of preventing plagiarism and demonstrating where you relied on outside sources. The specific style rules, however, can and do change regularly. For example, in 2018 alone, 46 new citation styles were introduced , and 106 updates were made to exiting styles. At EasyBib, we are always on the lookout for ways to improve our styles and opportunities to add new ones to our list.

Why Citations Matter

Here are the ways accurate citations can help your students achieve academic success, and how you can answer the dreaded question, “why should I cite my sources?”

They Give Credit to the Right People

Citing their sources makes sure that the reader can differentiate the student’s original thoughts from those of other researchers. Not only does this make sure that the sources they use receive proper credit for their work, it ensures that the student receives deserved recognition for their unique contributions to the topic. Whether the student is citing in MLA format , APA format , or any other style, citations serve as a natural way to place a student’s work in the broader context of the subject area, and serve as an easy way to gauge their commitment to the project.

They Provide Hard Evidence of Ideas

Having many citations from a wide variety of sources related to their idea means that the student is working on a well-researched and respected subject. Citing sources that back up their claim creates room for fact-checking and further research . And, if they can cite a few sources that have the converse opinion or idea, and then demonstrate to the reader why they believe that that viewpoint is wrong by again citing credible sources, the student is well on their way to winning over the reader and cementing their point of view.

They Promote Originality and Prevent Plagiarism

The point of research projects is not to regurgitate information that can already be found elsewhere. We have Google for that! What the student’s project should aim to do is promote an original idea or a spin on an existing idea, and use reliable sources to promote that idea. Copying or directly referencing a source without proper citation can lead to not only a poor grade, but accusations of academic dishonesty. By citing their sources regularly and accurately, students can easily avoid the trap of plagiarism , and promote further research on their topic.

They Create Better Researchers

By researching sources to back up and promote their ideas, students are becoming better researchers without even knowing it! Each time a new source is read or researched, the student is becoming more engaged with the project and is developing a deeper understanding of the subject area. Proper citations demonstrate a breadth of the student’s reading and dedication to the project itself. By creating citations, students are compelled to make connections between their sources and discern research patterns. Each time they complete this process, they are helping themselves become better researchers and writers overall.

When is the Right Time to Start Making Citations?

Make in-text/parenthetical citations as you need them.

As you are writing your paper, be sure to include references within the text that correspond with references in a works cited or bibliography. These are usually called in-text citations or parenthetical citations in MLA and APA formats. The most effective time to complete these is directly after you have made your reference to another source. For instance, after writing the line from Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities : “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…,” you would include a citation like this (depending on your chosen citation style):

(Dickens 11).

This signals to the reader that you have referenced an outside source. What’s great about this system is that the in-text citations serve as a natural list for all of the citations you have made in your paper, which will make completing the works cited page a whole lot easier. After you are done writing, all that will be left for you to do is scan your paper for these references, and then build a works cited page that includes a citation for each one.

Need help creating an MLA works cited page ? Try the MLA format generator on EasyBib.com! We also have a guide on how to format an APA reference page .

2. Understand the General Formatting Rules of Your Citation Style Before You Start Writing

While reading up on paper formatting may not sound exciting, being aware of how your paper should look early on in the paper writing process is super important. Citation styles can dictate more than just the appearance of the citations themselves, but rather can impact the layout of your paper as a whole, with specific guidelines concerning margin width, title treatment, and even font size and spacing. Knowing how to organize your paper before you start writing will ensure that you do not receive a low grade for something as trivial as forgetting a hanging indent.

Don’t know where to start? Here’s a formatting guide on APA format .

3. Double-check All of Your Outside Sources for Relevance and Trustworthiness First

Collecting outside sources that support your research and specific topic is a critical step in writing an effective paper. But before you run to the library and grab the first 20 books you can lay your hands on, keep in mind that selecting a source to include in your paper should not be taken lightly. Before you proceed with using it to backup your ideas, run a quick Internet search for it and see if other scholars in your field have written about it as well. Check to see if there are book reviews about it or peer accolades. If you spot something that seems off to you, you may want to consider leaving it out of your work. Doing this before your start making citations can save you a ton of time in the long run.

Finished with your paper? It may be time to run it through a grammar and plagiarism checker , like the one offered by EasyBib Plus. If you’re just looking to brush up on the basics, our grammar guides  are ready anytime you are.

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  • v.53(3); May-Jun 2019

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Formatting References for Scientific Manuscripts

Srinivas b s kambhampati.

Sri Dhaatri Orthopaedic, Maternity and Gynaecology Center, Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, India

Lalit Maini

1 Department of Orthopaedics, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi, India

While references are an essential and integral part of a scientific manuscript, format and style of references are as varied as the number of journals currently present. International Committee of Medical Journal Editors in their latest recommendations for publication, 1 advice authors to quote original references whenever possible. We would recommend the readers to go through these guidelines as they are given in sufficient detail to submit a good set of references including styling. Other resources for citing references include the PubMed section 2 which gives samples of formatting of different reference types and the eBook: Citing Medicine, 3 published by the U. S. National Library of Medicine, which gives assistance and rules to authors, editors, publishers and librarians for formatting of references for different reference types.

References are formatted in two basic styles – the Vancouver style which is numeric (more commonly used in medical journals) and Harvard which uses author-date style (more commonly used in natural and Social sciences journals). 4 Parts and order of the parts cited differ on what the author is citing (reference type) and the journal that is being submitted to. The most common types of references include journal article, book, book section or chapter, dissertation, monograph, and webpage. As an example, for a journal article, the parts of a reference in the sequence include authors, article title, journal title, date of publication, volume, issue, and location/pagination. Each journal has its own modification of the format for each part and the punctuation marks, or their lack of, between the parts. Formatting style in each part of a reference could involve placement of selected punctuation marks, bold and italics enhancements, alphabetical order or sequential ordering of references and style of citing in the text, making the combination of variations that create a unique reference style as large in number as the number of journals currently published. It is not clear why such a system has evolved, but it requires considerable attention to detail to get the formatting correct and is time-consuming for the author. The tradition of the journal has been thought as one of the reasons. 4 In manuscripts submitted for the Indian Journal of Orthopaedics (IJO), the reference section carries the most formatting errors committed by authors.

The advantage of having a constant style within a journal is two-fold, apart from an esthetic appearance of references across all articles published by the journal. Ease of reading the references at the end of each article and ease of finding reference part by the reader if he/she is used to the format and plans to look up the reference. As a student/professional in the medical field, one would require attention to finer details of his/her research work as well as in their clinical practice and hence exercising attention to the references would help improve those skills. Such a wide variation in the styles of references has also benefitted some software companies who deal with reference managers (RMs). Some RMs are free for use, and the authors are advised to use different RMs to see which one suits their needs best. While some RMs are cloud based, others are computer based and do not require an internet connection while some others are cloud and computer based. The variation in the style of references across journals appears unlikely to be standardized to a single universal format in the near future.

The Citation Style Language (CSL) is an XML-based computer language developed to standardize formatting of citations and references in manuscripts submitting to journals. They are text application editable files which are imported into RMs. An increasing number of RMs use CSL to help users format their list of references according to individual journal guidelines. However, not all journals are supported by CSL files.

There are two main repositories for access to CSL files – One by GitHub 5 and the other by Zotero 6 developed by Corporation for Digital Scholarship and Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media. These contain more than 8500 styles of references. Authors using Zotero, Mendeley, RefWorks, Papers, CrossRef, Bibliography, and some 42 other RMs can use these CSL files to manage references within them. IJO did not have a CSL file until now in both the repositories. In this scenario, there are a few options for the authors preparing references for a manuscript. First, to type and style references manually which would take a long time and prone to human errors. Second, a CSL file similar to IJO may be selected from the repository and used and later manually edited, if any needed. However, this involves searching for an exact match of style for a journal registered in the repository of CSL files. Third, there are RMs with inbuilt options to format references while citing in the text. This option is independent of CSL. The disadvantage here is that the author is bound by the list of reference styles already loaded within the software. They may not be able to add new formats. Fourth, some RMs allow authors to prepare a style, but this would take some time to prepare if the style is not already inbuilt. As a fifth option, a CSL file that is close to IJO may be chosen, and the code of this file tweaked with minor editing to convert it for use with IJO. To do that, the author must be familiar with programming or editing of HTML/XML files since HTML is a language that is closer to XML.

Zotero's repository 7 website has a user-friendly interface in which such searches are easier to perform. It has 9357 styles stored in the repository at the time of writing this article on March 17, 2019. There are 1924 unique styles through which one can search if their required journal is listed. Zotero draws CSL files from GitHub into their repository. Hence, if a file is created in GitHub, it is drawn into Zotero by default. CSL Project 8 is a website sponsored by four well known RMs. These are Zotero, Mendeley, 9 Papers, 10 and RefWorks. 11 This website gives detailed specifications and documentation of CSL language if one is interested in coding these files. If one is proficient with XML, they can create a style and submit it to the GitHub website for others to benefit. Editing is easier if one uses the Zotero RM as it has an inbuilt option to edit style. It can be done even in other managers or with the use of a standard text editing application in Windows or Mac operating systems. Once a new CSL file is developed, in order to publish it, it has to be validated by CSL validator website 12 and submitted at the GitHub site for accepting into the repository. Even finer details like number of author names before et al. while formatting reference, punctuation marks and their placement, style of each part of the reference and each style of the reference, etc., can be edited accurately.

Once developed, the output of references and citations is remarkably consistent, and too much time need not be directed to editing the punctuation marks and styling of the references and citations while preparing the manuscript. The only hurdle after this would be to get full details of the references reliably and accurately into the RM database while importing the references. The author needs to check that the references were properly imported into the database. If verified, they may be used any number of times with precision. With appropriate selection, the citing as well as the list of references can be formatted according to the journal that is being considered, for submission. Those who are already using RMs may be well aware of the advantages and the time such CSL files can save while preparing a manuscript.

We are happy to inform that a CSL file for IJO has now been created in the GitHub repository 1 and Zotero Styles repository 3 and it can be used by authors using the RMs listed in the CSL website and benefit from its use. The direct link of the file in the repository is given 13 [ Figure 1 ]. Basic users of RMs may download it through their RMs by selecting Indian Journal of Orthopaedics option. Advanced users who know where to place this file may access using the weblink given. Examples of reference style and citation for IJO are given in Figure 2 .

An external file that holds a picture, illustration, etc.
Object name is IJOrtho-53-381-g001.jpg

Screenshot of browser shows the web address and search words used to retrieve Citation Style Language file for Indian Journal of Orthopaedics

An external file that holds a picture, illustration, etc.
Object name is IJOrtho-53-381-g002.jpg

Examples of format of references and their citation in text for the Indian Journal of Orthopaedics

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Citing your sources.

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When you use ideas that are not your own, it is important to credit or cite the author(s) or source, even if you do not quote their idea or words exactly as written. Citing your sources allows your reader to identify the works you have consulted and to understand the scope of your research. There are many different citation styles available. You may be required to use a particular style or you may choose one.

One of the commonly used styles is the APA (American Psychological Association) Style.

APA style stipulates that authors use brief references in the text of a work with full bibliographic details supplied in a Reference List (typically at the end of your document). In text, the reference is very brief and usually consists simply of the author's last name and a date.For example:

...Sheep milk has been proved to contain more nutrients than cow milk (Johnson, 2005).

In a Reference list, the reference contains full bibliographic details written in a format that depends on the type of reference. Examples of formats for some common types of references are listed below. For additional information, visit the University of Arkansas libraries webpage on citing your sources . Another useful web-site on this topic is here.

Author last name, Author First Initial. Author Second Initial. (Publication Year). Title of article. Title of Journal, volume(issue) (if issue numbered), pages.

Bass, M. A., Enochs, W. K., & DiBrezzo, R. (2002). Comparison of two exercise programs on general well-being of college students. Psychological Reports, 91(3), 1195-1201.

Author Last Name, Author First Initial. Author Second Initial. (if there is no author move entry title to first position) (Publication year). Title of article or entry. In Work title. (Vol. number, pp. pages). Place: Publisher.

"Ivory-billed woodpecker." (2002). In The new encyclopædia britannica. (Vol. 5, p. ). 15th ed. Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica.

Author Last Name, Author First Initial. Author Second Initial. (if there is no author move entry title to first position) (Publication year). Title of article or entry. In Work title. Retrieved from (database name or URL).

Ivory-billed woodpecker. (2006). In Encyclopædia britannica online. Retrieved from http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9043081

Author last name, Author First Initial. Author Second Initial. (Publication Year, Month Day). Title of article. Title of Magazine,volume, pages.

Holloway, M. (2005, August). When extinct isn't. Scientific American, 293, 22-23.

Author last name, Author First Initial. Author Second Initial. (Publication Year, Month Day). Title of article. Title of Magazine. volume, pages. Retrieved from (database name or URL).

Holloway, M. (2005, August). When extinct isn't. Scientific American, 293, 22-23. Retrieved from Academic Search Premier database.

Page Author Last Name, Page Author First Initial. Page Author Second Initial. Page title [nature of work - web site, blog, forum posting, etc.]. (Publication Year). Retrieved from (URL)

Sabo, G., et al. Rock art in Arkansas [Web site]. (2001). Retrieved from http://arkarcheology.uark.edu/rockart/index.html

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Citation Styles Guide | Examples for All Major Styles

Published on June 24, 2022 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on November 7, 2022.

A citation style is a set of guidelines on how to cite sources in your academic writing . You always need a citation whenever you quote , paraphrase , or summarize a source to avoid plagiarism . How you present these citations depends on the style you follow. Scribbr’s citation generator can help!

Different styles are set by different universities, academic associations, and publishers, often published in an official handbook with in-depth instructions and examples.

There are many different citation styles, but they typically use one of three basic approaches: parenthetical citations , numerical citations, or note citations.

Parenthetical citations

  • Chicago (Turabian) author-date

CSE name-year

Numerical citations

CSE citation-name or citation-sequence

Note citations

  • Chicago (Turabian) notes and bibliography

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Table of contents

Types of citation: parenthetical, note, numerical, which citation style should i use, parenthetical citation styles, numerical citation styles, note citation styles, frequently asked questions about citation styles.

The clearest identifying characteristic of any citation style is how the citations in the text are presented. There are three main approaches:

  • Parenthetical citations: You include identifying details of the source in parentheses in the text—usually the author’s last name and the publication date, plus a page number if relevant ( author-date ). Sometimes the publication date is omitted ( author-page ).
  • Numerical citations: You include a number in brackets or in superscript, which corresponds to an entry in your numbered reference list.
  • Note citations: You include a full citation in a footnote or endnote, which is indicated in the text with a superscript number or symbol.

Citation styles also differ in terms of how you format the reference list or bibliography entries themselves (e.g., capitalization, order of information, use of italics). And many style guides also provide guidance on more general issues like text formatting, punctuation, and numbers.

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how to write references in a research

In most cases, your university, department, or instructor will tell you which citation style you need to follow in your writing. If you’re not sure, it’s best to consult your institution’s guidelines or ask someone. If you’re submitting to a journal, they will usually require a specific style.

Sometimes, the choice of citation style may be left up to you. In those cases, you can base your decision on which citation styles are commonly used in your field. Try reading other articles from your discipline to see how they cite their sources, or consult the table below.

The American Anthropological Association (AAA) recommends citing your sources using Chicago author-date style . AAA style doesn’t have its own separate rules. This style is used in the field of anthropology.

APA Style is defined by the 7th edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association . It was designed for use in psychology, but today it’s widely used across various disciplines, especially in the social sciences.

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The citation style of the American Political Science Association (APSA) is used mainly in the field of political science.

The citation style of the American Sociological Association (ASA) is used primarily in the discipline of sociology.

Chicago author-date

Chicago author-date style is one of the two citation styles presented in the Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition). It’s used mainly in the sciences and social sciences.

The citation style of the Council of Science Editors (CSE) is used in various scientific disciplines. It includes multiple options for citing your sources, including the name-year system.

Harvard style is often used in the field of economics. It is also very widely used across disciplines in UK universities. There are various versions of Harvard style defined by different universities—it’s not a style with one definitive style guide.

Check out Scribbr’s Harvard Reference Generator

MLA style is the official style of the Modern Language Association, defined in the MLA Handbook (9th edition). It’s widely used across various humanities disciplines. Unlike most parenthetical citation styles, it’s author-page rather than author-date.

Generate accurate MLA citations with Scribbr

The American Chemical Society (ACS) provides guidelines for a citation style using numbers in superscript or italics in the text, corresponding to entries in a numbered reference list at the end. It is used in chemistry.

The American Medical Association ( AMA ) provides guidelines for a numerical citation style using superscript numbers in the text, which correspond to entries in a numbered reference list. It is used in the field of medicine.

CSE style includes multiple options for citing your sources, including the citation-name and citation-sequence systems. Your references are listed alphabetically in the citation-name system; in the citation-sequence system, they appear in the order in which you cited them.

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers ( IEEE ) provides guidelines for citing your sources with IEEE in-text citations that consist of numbers enclosed in brackets, corresponding to entries in a numbered reference list. This style is used in various engineering and IT disciplines.

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) citation style is defined in Citing Medicine: The NLM Style Guide for Authors, Editors, and Publishers (2nd edition).

Vancouver style is also used in various medical disciplines. As with Harvard style, a lot of institutions and publications have their own versions of Vancouver—it doesn’t have one fixed style guide.

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The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation is the main style guide for legal citations in the US. It’s widely used in law, and also when legal materials need to be cited in other disciplines.

Chicago notes and bibliography

Chicago notes and bibliography is one of the two citation styles presented in the Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition). It’s used mainly in the humanities.

The Oxford University Standard for the Citation of Legal Authorities ( OSCOLA ) is the main legal citation style in the UK (similar to Bluebook for the US).

There are many different citation styles used across different academic disciplines, but they fall into three basic approaches to citation:

  • Parenthetical citations : Including identifying details of the source in parentheses —usually the author’s last name and the publication date, plus a page number if available ( author-date ). The publication date is occasionally omitted ( author-page ).
  • Numerical citations: Including a number in brackets or superscript, corresponding to an entry in your numbered reference list.
  • Note citations: Including a full citation in a footnote or endnote , which is indicated in the text with a superscript number or symbol.

Check if your university or course guidelines specify which citation style to use. If the choice is left up to you, consider which style is most commonly used in your field.

  • APA Style is the most popular citation style, widely used in the social and behavioral sciences.
  • MLA style is the second most popular, used mainly in the humanities.
  • Chicago notes and bibliography style is also popular in the humanities, especially history.
  • Chicago author-date style tends to be used in the sciences.

Other more specialized styles exist for certain fields, such as Bluebook and OSCOLA for law.

The most important thing is to choose one style and use it consistently throughout your text.

A scientific citation style is a system of source citation that is used in scientific disciplines. Some commonly used scientific citation styles are:

  • Chicago author-date , CSE , and Harvard , used across various sciences
  • ACS , used in chemistry
  • AMA , NLM , and Vancouver , used in medicine and related disciplines
  • AAA , APA , and ASA , commonly used in the social sciences

APA format is widely used by professionals, researchers, and students in the social and behavioral sciences, including fields like education, psychology, and business.

Be sure to check the guidelines of your university or the journal you want to be published in to double-check which style you should be using.

MLA Style  is the second most used citation style (after APA ). It is mainly used by students and researchers in humanities fields such as literature, languages, and philosophy.

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Caulfield, J. (2022, November 07). Citation Styles Guide | Examples for All Major Styles. Scribbr. Retrieved February 22, 2024, from https://www.scribbr.com/citing-sources/citation-styles/

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HIst 301: Historian's Craft (Petty, Spring 2024)

  • What IS a History Librarian?
  • In This Session (2/22/24)
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Steps when looking for peer reviewed sources

1) Write out your topic

2) Identify key words

3) Identify synonyms

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  • triangle shirtwaist fire
  • protections
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  • AHL  ; search for just Barnum in AHL  ; all ebsco  ; catalog  ; catalog
  • organized labor
  • "organized labor" AND baltimore AND ("rail yard" OR "railway yard" OR "railroad yard")
  • "organized labor" AND baltimore AND (longshoremen OR "longshore workers" OR "Dockworkers")
  • ("organized labor" OR  unions) AND (longshoremen OR "longshore workers" OR "Dockworkers"
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  • there are materials in googlescholar BUT almost none are peer reviewed
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  • see  su:Orchestral musicians Employment
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  • playstation in AHL
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  • "ghost towns" in ahl 
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  • Child labor -- Law and legislation -- United States -- History in catalog
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  • manongs or  Filipino
  • ( " Delano Grape Strike" OR " Delano Strike") in AHL  and catalog
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how to write references in a research

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Welcome! In our session today, we are going to explore some ideas about information, doing research, and make friends with the library website. I will guide you through and am happy to answer questions now and in the future. Find me at jwhite15atuno.edu or 504-280-6548. 

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how to write references in a research

Database Search Strategy

Database searching is a repetitive learning exercise; the more you practice, the better you get. Many databases function similarly: a basic search engine plus a set of relatively sophisticated limiting functions. 

Search interfaces have common features: the ability to search for topics by a keyword (like using Google), an author, the title of an article, a review, or a specific subject. The search parameters can sometimes be specialized according to subject matter indexed by a particular database.  One of the most important things you can do to learn about a database is to check the section (often in upper right-hand corner) labelled 'Help'. It will often define the terms you see listed in a database, and once you learn them you will find they are common to many databases.

Common limits you will see include ways to restrict your search to a specific time period, i.e. 2002- to the present, to filter out peer-reviewed from popular materials, to a certain journal, to a specific author, or publisher. All of these can be profitably used to narrow your search to retrieve high-quality citations and articles for your research. For help in database searching, please contact me (contact information on the right)   or contact the library's reference service via email or chat . 

Evaluating and re-evaluating search results gives you ideas for refining your search and retrieving more targeted results. Scan the titles of the articles in your search result list. Note any subjects included in the description. For an article that has a promising title, click on it and check the abstract--that will give you a good idea of the scope of the article. Is it entirely appropriate or partially appropriate to your research topic? You can profit from both varieties, but at the beginning of your search process, it is best to focus on articles that you can use in its entirety.

Connecting to full text is your next task. Many databases will offer you a link to the full text, but it isn't always available in every database. There are several options, in that case. The first is to check our  catalog  and find the journal in print. Using the citation from the database (you can often email yourself the full citation, sometimes in your preferred citation style), you can search the catalog and locate the item in the 2nd floor Periodical stacks. Copiers are located on the 1st and 2nd floors.

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For help in searching, finding and using complete citations and questions about how to obtain materials, chat with a librarian online  or contact me, Hannah White at 504-280-6548 and [email protected].

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Should you have questions, the library has answers for you! You can contact me at my coordinates above, you can call the Services desk at 504-280-6355 or chat with librarians online here: https://libguides.uno.edu/reference

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Tools You Can Use to Search

UNO Library Catalog (best for print books, e-books, and location of printed journals)

Recommended Databases:

  • World Factbook World Factbook is a government publication offering authoritative and up to date information about countries including a description government types, economic facts, and more
  • One Search Searches over 60 databases across a variety of topics--news, education, psychology, the sciences, and more
  • JSTOR JSTOR is an electronic archive of selected journals in various disciplines. It attempts to maintain complete journal holdings from the first volume, but current volumes (from the past three to six years) are not included.
  • Literati by Credo Credo Reference provides access to almost 600 reference titles covering a broad range of disciplines.
  • Research Worksheet

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Research consultations are available to every student by appointment with a  librarian.

Previous to your appointment,  your librarian will ask for  a description of your project, due date, and what you hope to gain from the session. We tailor the session to your immediate research needs and offer follow-up appointments, as necessary.  Please use this  form  to request a research consultation.

  • Next: What is a Peer-Reviewed Article? >>

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how to write references in a research

Where Should I Put My Professional References?

Are you confused on how to share professional references during the job application process? Look no further!

What is a list of references?

First off, a list of references is different from letters of recommendation. Letters of recommendation are documents created by the reference and used to send to employers, grad schools, etc. A list of references is a one-page document comprised of 3-5 professionals that can attest to your professionalism, work ethic, style of work, personality, etc. It will include their name, title/position, company name, phone number, email, and the description of the reference in relation to you. There is no need to put "References available upon request" on your resume as this takes up space on your document and is implied if you wish to continue on as a candidate.

Who should I ask to be a reference?

These references can be current or former managers, supervisors, professors, colleagues, direct reports (if you lead/led a team), clients (job dependent), professional mentors, or athletic coaches. You should avoid using family as they are seen as too partial towards you. It is important to note that you should only be adding references that will provide a positive reference for you. Prior to adding the references to your document, make sure to call the potential candidates and ask them if would be a positive reference if called. With them officially a part of your job process, give them a heads-up on the potential companies that may be calling, share information on the position that you applied for, and remind them of skills or accomplishments that you would like them to highlight. ECS has a sample reference request in Correspondence Samples within the Handshake Resource Library.

When/why is a list of references necessary?

Employers request this to have others attest to your qualifications on your resume while also gauging your ability to do a job well. Your professional references may be requested at any point in the application process. This document request may come at the beginning when you submit your application; they may ask for it explicitly or it can be added into the supplemental document section. It's also possible that they ask for this later during the interview portion of the process.

“Network continually – 85% of all jobs are filled through contacts & personal references.” – Brian Tracy

Related News

Two women sit in an office waiting room holding their resumes.

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COMMENTS

  1. References in Research

    Definition: References in research are a list of sources that a researcher has consulted or cited while conducting their study. They are an essential component of any academic work, including research papers, theses, dissertations, and other scholarly publications. Types of References

  2. How to Cite Sources

    The most commonly used citation styles are APA and MLA. The free Scribbr Citation Generator is the quickest way to cite sources in these styles. Simply enter the URL, DOI, or title, and we'll generate an accurate, correctly formatted citation. Generate accurate citations with Scribbr Instantly correct all language mistakes in your text

  3. How To Write Your References Quickly And Easily

    In general, a reference will include authors' names and initials, the title of the article, name of the journal, volume and issue, date, page numbers and DOI. On ScienceDirect, articles are linked to their original source (if also published on ScienceDirect) or to their Scopus record, so including the DOI can help link to the correct article.

  4. References

    Check each reference carefully against the original publication to ensure information is accurate and complete. Accurately prepared references help establish your credibility as a careful researcher and writer.

  5. Reference List: Basic Rules

    Reference list entries should be alphabetized by the last name of the first author of each work. For multiple articles by the same author, or authors listed in the same order, list the entries in chronological order, from earliest to most recent.

  6. Reference List: Common Reference List Examples

    For example, you are citing study notes titled "Health Effects of Exposure to Forest Fires," but you do not know the author's name, your reference entry will look like this: Health effects of exposure to forest fires [Lecture notes]. (2005). Walden University Canvas. https://waldenu.instructure.com.

  7. How to Cite in APA Format (7th edition)

    APA in-text citations The basics. In-text citations are brief references in the running text that direct readers to the reference entry at the end of the paper. You include them every time you quote or paraphrase someone else's ideas or words to avoid plagiarism.. An APA in-text citation consists of the author's last name and the year of publication (also known as the author-date system).

  8. A Quick Guide to Referencing

    Knowledge Base Referencing A Quick Guide to Referencing | Cite Your Sources Correctly Referencing means acknowledging the sources you have used in your writing. Including references helps you support your claims and ensures that you avoid plagiarism. There are many referencing styles, but they usually consist of two things:

  9. How to write references in research papers| Researcher.Life

    If the citations follow the Harvard system, references in a research papers are sorted alphabetically by the last name of the first author; if the citations follow the Vancouver system, the references are arranged by numbers: the reference corresponding to the first numbered citation is numbered 1, and so on.

  10. A Quick Guide to Harvard Referencing

    When you cite a source with up to three authors, cite all authors' names. For four or more authors, list only the first name, followed by ' et al. ': Number of authors. In-text citation example. 1 author. (Davis, 2019) 2 authors. (Davis and Barrett, 2019) 3 authors.

  11. Library Guides: Start Your Research: Cite Your Sources

    A citation identifies for the reader the original source for an idea, information, or image that is referred to in a work. In the body of a paper, the in-text citation acknowledges the source of information used.; At the end of a paper, the citations are compiled on a References or Works Cited list.A basic citation includes the author, title, and publication information of the source.

  12. APA Formatting and Style Guide (7th Edition)

    Resources on writing an APA style reference list, including citation formats. Basic Rules Basic guidelines for formatting the reference list at the end of a standard APA research paper Author/Authors Rules for handling works by a single author or multiple authors that apply to all APA-style references in your reference list, regardless of the ...

  13. Quick guide to Harvard referencing (Cite Them Right)

    There are different versions of the Harvard referencing style. This guide is a quick introduction to the commonly-used Cite Them Right version. You will find further guidance available through the OU Library on the Cite Them Right Database. For help and support with referencing and the full Cite Them Right guide, have a look at the Library's ...

  14. 4 Ways to Write an APA Style References Page

    Method 1 Creating APA Style References Manually Download Article 1 List the author's last name. For each source, list the author's last name and first initials. Use a comma to separate the author's last name and initials. Then, place a period after the initials.

  15. How to Create or Generate APA Reference Entries (7th edition)

    Basic format. In an APA reference, the author's name is inverted: start with the last name, followed by a comma and the initials, separated by a period and space. Treat infixes, such as "Van" or "De", as part of the last name. Don't include personal titles such as Ph.D. or Dr., but do include suffixes. Smith, T. H. J.

  16. How to Cite Sources in APA Citation Format

    1. APA Referencing Basics: Reference List. A reference list is a complete list of references used in a piece of writing including the author name, date of publication, title and more. An APA reference list must: Be on a new page at the end of the document. Be centred

  17. References: How to Cite and List Correctly

    For an original article, thesis, or review, use the term ' References ', as the list of sources comprises of complete bibliographic details of every publication. Some prefer to use ' Works cited ' or ' Sources cited ' to include non-traditional sources such as online sources, video recordings, and personal communications (e-mail, interview, etc.).

  18. How to Cite Sources

    Here is a complete list for how to cite sources. Most of these guides present citation guidance and examples in MLA, APA, and Chicago. If you're looking for general information on MLA or APA citations, the EasyBib Writing Center was designed for you!

  19. Conduct a reference search and format your reference section

    Style Guides. Academic style guides include rules and guidelines for the format of the paper, the in-text citations, and reference lists. As the Purdue Online Writing Lab, or OWL, explains: style guides are used as a way of making common elements consistent across documents written by many writers, in many places, and in many circumstances; as a result, readers from any university (or other ...

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  21. Research Guides: Science Fair Resources: Citing Your Sources

    When you use ideas that are not your own, it is important to credit or cite the author (s) or source, even if you do not quote their idea or words exactly as written. Citing your sources allows your reader to identify the works you have consulted and to understand the scope of your research. There are many different citation styles available.

  22. How To Cite a Research Paper in 2024: Citation Styles Guide

    If you are looking for the best advice on how to write a research paper, the first thing you would find is to cite your sources. In academic research, it is standardized by many institutions. And, publication venues such as conferences and journals are somehow strict about their formats.

  23. How to write references quickly and easily for a research project

    How to write references quickly and easily for a research projectIn this video, I have explained how to cite references in different formats like Vancouver, ...

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    When you write an essay for a course you are taking, you are being asked not only to create a product (the essay) but, more importantly, to go through a process of thinking more deeply about a question or problem related to the course. By writing about a source or collection of sources, you will have the chance to wrestle with some of the

  25. Evaluating Sources

    Also consider - is it "good" research? Think about the following... o Design of study: is the design appropriate to the problem/question being studied?. o Data Collectors: how qualified were they?. o Sampling: how many "subjects" were studied and how were they chosen?. o Statistics: how sound is the approach/method used?. o Bias: in sampling, due to sponsorship of research, etc.

  26. Summarize With AI: A Comprehensive Guide

    Using AI in content analysis is perhaps the most common use. When conducting research for academic writing like a research paper, you don't have time to read every potential source to see if it has what you want. Instead, you can use AI to summarize both primary sources and secondary sources to reveal if they fit your research topic.

  27. Citation Styles Guide

    APA Style is the most popular citation style, widely used in the social and behavioral sciences. MLA style is the second most popular, used mainly in the humanities. Chicago notes and bibliography style is also popular in the humanities, especially history. Chicago author-date style tends to be used in the sciences.

  28. Research Guides: HIst 301: Historian's Craft (Petty, Spring 2024

    Secondary Source: Writing out your topics; Annotated Bibliographies Toggle Dropdown. Analyzing, Summarizing, and Critiquing an Article ; Analyzing, Summarizing, and Critiquing a Book ; Types of Primary Sources (and why it matters) Toggle Dropdown. Periodical Articles ; Published Diaries ; Unpublished Diaries ; Memoir ; Published letters ...

  29. Library Guides: ENGL 1158--Sullivan Spring 2024: Welcome

    Introductory sources and services for Ms. Sullivan's students. Should you have questions, the library has answers for you! You can contact me at my coordinates above, you can call the Services desk at 504-280-6355 or chat with librarians online here: https://libguides.uno.edu/reference

  30. Where Should I Put My Professional References?

    First off, a list of references is different from letters of recommendation. Letters of recommendation are documents created by the reference and used to send to employers, grad schools, etc. A list of references is a one-page document comprised of 3-5 professionals that can attest to your professionalism, work ethic, style of work, personality ...