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Write it Right - A guide to Harvard referencing style

The Harvard Referencing Style

The Harvard referencing style (also known as ‘author-date’) is commonly used at LIT.
There are two elements to the Harvard referencing style. This means when you reference using the Harvard system, you have to do two things: 

  1. Include an author-date citation each time you refer to a source in the body of your essay.
    Note: also, include the page number if it is a direct quotation.
  2. Compile a complete reference list of all the sources that you cited throughout your essay on a separate page at the end of your essay.
    Note: this list must be in alphabetical order according to the first author's surname.

In summary, when you are writing up your college projects, you must remember to acknowledge the other authors you are using in two places:

  • in the text of your assignment (in-text citations), and,
  • at the end of your assignment (reference list).

What is Citing?

If you have used the author’s exact words (direct quotation) or the author’s ideas (paraphrasing) from a book, journal article, etc. you must acknowledge this in your text. This is referred to as in-text citing:

In-text citations give the brief (abbreviated) details of the work that you are quoting from, or to which you are referring in your text. These citations will then link to the full reference in the reference list at the end of your work, which is arranged in alphabetical order by author (Pears and Shields, 2019, p.7).

Author prominent citing 
This citation method gives prominence to the author’s surname (family name) as part of your sentence with the date and page number in parentheses (round brackets). 
Note: The page number is necessary if you are quoting directly. 

Example
According to Davidson (2019, p. 370) ‘interest in designing greener meetings and events has been growing among business events professionals’.

Information prominent citing
This citation method gives prominence to the information with the required referencing details in parentheses at the end of the citation.

Example
Results revealed ‘interviewees placed a strong focus on the need for better education and promotion of electric vehicles in the Irish context’ (O’Neill et al., 2019, p. 123).

Citing page numbers in text - some rules

Author(s) name

  • For one author, use surname of author only. There is no need to include initials.
    Example - (Barr, 2016, p. 22)
  • For two authors, use both authors’ surnames linked by ‘and’. 
    Example - (Tabrizi and Rahmani, 2021, p. 13).
  • For three or more authors, use the first author’s surname and et al. 
    Example - (Kirrane et al., 2021, p. 23). 

Year:

  • Give full four digits for the year.

Pages:

  • Give page numbers if you are quoting directly. Abbreviate to p. for a single page and pp. for a page range.
    Examples
    ‘Ireland has contributed to, and being affected by, global warming’ (Robbins, 2020, p. 3). 
    ‘It has implemented a carbon tax and encouraged renewable energy development’ (Robbins, 2020, pp. 3-4)
  • Structure your sentence to include the in-text citation. 
    Example
    According to Williams (2020, p. 12) ‘among the treasures to be collected from the woods are pine cones’.
  • If you are paraphrasing, it is not essential to give page numbers. 
    Example
    Williams (2020) inspires readers to experience the natural world for themselves.

Using direct quotations

Quotations should be used sparingly, selected carefully, used in context, integrated into your text, and reproduced exactly (including the words, spelling, punctuation, capitalisation and paraphrasing of the original writer). 

Short quotations
Short quotations (fewer than 30 words) should:

  • be incorporated into your sentence without disrupting the flow of your paragraph,
  • have single quotation marks,
  • have the full stop after the citation, and,
  • keep the same font size.
Example
According to Barr (2016, p. 22) ‘sustainability must be analysed on a number of different levels, from principles to concepts and then to application’.

Long quotations 
Long quotations (more than 30 words) should:

  • be introduced in your own words,
  • begin on a new line,
  • be fully indented by default (i.e. 1.27 cm) from the left margin,
  • be in single line spacing.

Separate the quotation from the lead-in statement with one blank line. The lead-in statement ends with a colon(:). Separate the quotation from the text that follows it with one blank line.

Example
The situation is described in relation to the West of Ireland: 

The decline of nature and people is no coincidence, although as farming and fishing incomes have declined, tourism has taken up some of the slack. Achill is a popular spot in summer and it is particularly geared towards water-based activities. It lies along the Wild Atlantic Way, billed as the world’s longest scenic drive (Fogarty, 2017, p. 292).

Green tourism is a relatively new phenomenon that is thriving in Ireland, particularly along scenic stretches of the Western seaboard. This type of tourism makes for a more sustainable way of living. It takes an environmentally friendly approach.

Quotation marks

  • Quotation marks are not used for longer quotations.
  • When using an information prominent long quotation, the full stop is included after the last sentence of the quotation after the citation.

Example
The situation is described in relation to the West of Ireland: 

The decline of nature and people is no coincidence, although as farming and fishing incomes have declined, tourism has taken up some of the slack. Achill is a popular spot in summer and it is particularly geared towards water-based activities. It lies along the Wild Atlantic Way, billed as the world’s longest scenic drive (Fogarty, 2017, p. 292).

Words omitted from quotations

  • To omit unnecessary words from quotations, use an ellipsis … (3 dots).
    Note: Make sure the quotation still has the same meaning.
Example
‘Achill is a popular spot in summer … It lies along the Wild Atlantic Way’ (Fogarty, 2017, p. 292).
  • If the quotation does not begin at the start of a sentence, an ellipsis should be used to convey this.
Example
‘… tourism has taken up some of the slack’ (Fogarty, 2017, p. 292).

How to cite in the body of your text

When you cite someone else’s work, you must state the author/editor and the date of publication. If the work has two authors/editors, you must cite both names. Don't forget to include page numbers for direct quotations. 
There is no need to include the title, place of publication etc. These details are listed in the reference list at the end of your essay.  

 

Example – One author cited in the body of your text
As Juniper (2016, p. 16) explains, ‘more people create a greater demand for food, energy, water and other resources, driving pressures on the natural environment’.

Example – Two authors cited in the body of your text
As researchers point out, ‘so many aspects of our lives are only possible because we have access to reliable electricity’ (Ockwell and Byrne, 2017, p. 2).

For a work that has three or more authors/editors, the abbreviation, et al. is used after the first author’s name. 

Example
According to Woodruff et al. (2016, p. 50) ‘the produced electricity from solar power plants is very low’.

For a work that has the same author/editor, and was written in the same year as an earlier citation, you must use a lower case letter after the date to differentiate between the two. 

Example
In-text citation:

The negative impacts of climate change pose a significant risk to the coastal areas of the county (Clare County Council, 2019a). Several initiatives have been put in place to help combat this, for example, Clare County Council (2019b) supports the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan with pollinator friendly planting.

Reference List:
Clare County Council (2019a) Climate change adaptation strategy 2019-2024. Ennis: Clare County Council.
Clare County Council (2019b) Clare County Council: annual report 2019. Ennis: Clare County Council. 

Citing from books with chapters written by different authors 
Some books may contain chapters written by several different authors. In this case the author who wrote the chapter should be cited not the editor of the book.

Example
In-text citation:

‘A conservatory or greenhouse on the south side of a building can be thought of as a kind of habitable solar collector’ (Everett, 2018, p. 75).

Reference List: 
Everett, B. (2018) Solar thermal energy, in Peake, S. (ed.) Renewable energy: power for a sustainable future. 4th edn. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 57-114.

Secondary Referencing

If you are reading a source by one author, for example, Garvey (2019) and he cites or quotes the work of another author, for example, Taylor (1996) you may cite or quote the original work, Taylor (1996) as a secondary reference.
Note: It is always best practice to try and locate the original reference and secondary references should only be used if it is difficult to access the original work

Example
In-text citation:

Taylor’s observations (1996, cited in Garvey, 2019) are based on a genuine respect for nature. 
OR 
‘Every living thing has a good of its own’ (Taylor, 1996, quoted in Garvey, 2019, p. 53).

Reference List:
Garvey, J. (2019) The ethics of climate change: right and wrong in a warming world. London: Continuum.

Using charts, images, figures in the body of your text

Charts, images, figures etc. should be treated as direct quotations in that the author/editor, year and page number should be acknowledged in-text, and the full reference to the item should be listed in the reference list. 

Example
In-text citation:

The figure below (Attia, 2018, p. 192, fig. 7.1) illustrates the point.


Reference List: 
Attia, S. (2018) Net zero energy buildings (NZEB): concepts, frameworks and roadmap for project analysis and implementation. Oxford: Elsevier Science & Technology. Available at: http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/limerickit/detail. action?docID=5331603 (Accessed: 15 April 2021).

The Library, Technological University of the Shannon: Midwest