Skip to main content

Harvard Referencing - The Basics

Introduction to the Harvard Referencing style


As mentioned already, in order to do good research, you need to reference any words, ideas or images you have used in your assignment that are not your own original thoughts.

Following the Harvard Style, this involves two elements:

  1. you will be quoting, paraphrasing and summarising your sources throughout the essay (in-text citations), and,
  2. compiling a full list of of all the sources that you cited throughout your essay (reference list) at the end.

Let's take a look at these two elements in more detail...

Quoting, Paraphrasing & Summarising

When you are writing up your projects, you may choose to quote, paraphrase or summarise your sources. 

  1. Quoting means using someone else's exact words, and putting them in quotation marks
  2. Paraphrasing means expressing someone else's ideas in your own voice, while keeping
    the same essential meaning
  3. Summarising means taking a long passage of text from someone else, and condensing
    the main ideas in your own words

Whether you decide to quote, paraphrase or summarise, don't forget to reference all your sources by including a citation (in-text) and a full reference (at the end) of your assignment. 

(, 2020)

(Lauren's The Write Way, 2016)

End of Essay


A reference list is a detailed list of all the sources (books, journals, webpages etc.) that you
have cited in your work. 

In the Harvard Style, the list of references is arranged alphabetically according to the main
author's surname, and is placed on a separate page at the end of your essay.

References to books, journals, webpages etc. follow certain templates in the Harvard Style. 

We will look at these templates in more detail in the next section.


(, 2020)

The Library, Limerick Institute of Technology