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About Harvard Referencing Style

Referencing is the set of rules following which one can acknowledge the ideas, thoughts, or work of other author's in his work using a particular style. There are various styles of referencing, out of which Harvard is the most commonly used one.

Harvard referencing, also known as the parenthetical or author-date format, is used by scholars of various universities across the globe. This referencing style is used to cite sources of the information included in the document. There are two main types of Harvard citations, as mentioned below:

1. In-Text Citations

These are the types of citations that are done inside the text and used for quoting or paraphrasing purposes.

Example: The referencing here…(Neville, 2010)

2. Reference Lists

These are the detailed and complete citations of the sources, included at the end of the document.

Example: Neville C 2010, The complete guide of referencing and avoiding plagiarism, Open University Press, New York.

How to Cite Sources Using the Harvard Referencing Style?

Before we look into how we can reference any source of information using this style, let's take an insight into the information we should include in it:

  1. Name of the Author/s
  2. Year of Publishing
  3. Title of the Source
  4. City Where It's Published
  5. Who the Publisher Is
  6. What Pages Were Used

Now, when using a Harvard referencing guide, one must make sure to include all this information. But the catch here is, different content types follow different formats. Don't worry; read further to know everything about them.

Reference List Citations:

As there are two citation types, the referencing is also categorized into those types. First, let's take a look at 'Reference List' citations:

General Format for Harvard Reference List Citations:

Last Name, First Initial, (Year of Publishing), Title, City: Publisher, Page(s)

Example: Peterson, J. (2009). Maximum Ride. New York: Little, Brown

Though this is the general format, yet for various write-ups, we modify this format as explained below:

1. Citations for Books

The first and most commonly used source of reliable information is, books. Rather it is your course books or reference books from the study, but these are considered as the most efficient and accurate way of collecting information. So, if you've also gathered information from books, then you can use the below-mentioned citation formats for referencing the book sources. Also, while doing so,

a. Books with One Author

  • If the book is the first edition

Last Name, First Initial. (Year of Publishing). Title. City Published: Publisher, Page(s).

Example: Peterson, K. (2000). City Ride. New York: Brand, Brown, pp.446-448.

  • If the book is not the first edition

Last Name, First Initial. (Year of Publishing). Title. Edition. City Published: Publisher, Page(s).

Example: Dahl, G. (2008). Charlie and the angels. 6th ed. London: Knopf, pp.446-448

b. Books with Two or More Authors

Last Name, First Initial. and Last Name, First Initial. (Year of Publishing). Title. City Published: Publisher, Page(s).

Example: Bress, Bob. (2001). L. Matson, ed., The Animals That We Hate, 1st ed. Boston: Jacob Ltd., pp. 79-92

c. Chapters in Edited Books

  • If the book is the first edition

Last Name, First Initial. (Year of Publishing). Chapter Title. In: First Initial. Last Name, Book Title, City Published: Publisher, Page(s).

Example: Ferres, K 2001, 'Idiot Box: Television, Urban Myths and Ethical Scenarios', in I Craven (ed.), Australian cinema in the 1990s, London, Frank Cass, pp.175-88
  • If the book is not the first edition

Last Name, First Initial. (Year of Publishing). Chapter Title. In: First Initial. Last name, ed., Book Title, City Published: Publisher, Page(s).

Example: Bressler, L. (2010). My girl, Kylie. In: L.Matheson, ed., The Dogs That We Love, 2nd ed. Boston: Jacobson Ltd., pp. 78-92

d. Multiple Works of the Same Author

When you've to cite multiple works of the same author, you should arrange it year-wise, the most frequent one to the oldest one. If all the works are of the same year, then practice alphabetic order of the title.

Example:

  • Jones, C 1999a, Assessing hypotheses, Western Sydney University, Penrith. Jones, C 1999b, Forming hypotheses, Western Sydney University, Penrith.
  • Jones C 2008, Developing hypotheses, Western Sydney University, Penrith
2. Citations for Journals

Journals are the academic publications that are released on a regular basis. These are some good sources of information which is reliable and interesting too. So, if you too are also using journals for your reference, then you can follow the below-mentioned referencing format:

Last name, First initial. (Year of publishing). Article title. Journal, Volume (Issue), Page(s).

Example: Ross, Neil. (2016). True Content and False formation in Scientific Theory. Philosophy Today, 79(2), pp. 69-290

3. Citations for Newspaper

Newspapers are a source of vast information on current affairs. When including facts or information from a newspaper, then the format to be followed is:

Last name, First initial. (Year of publishing). Article title. Journal, [online] Volume (Issue), Page(s).Available at: URL [Accessed Day Month. Year]

Example: Berkovic, N 2009, 'Handouts may not be sent: tax office seeks quick resolution of High Court challenge,' The Australian, 31 March, p.5.

4. Citations for Magazine

Magazines are publications that are produced on a regular basis, either weekly, monthly, or so on, based on a particular subject or field to provide information. When collecting information from this source, the format used should be:

Last name, First initial. (Year of publishing). Article title. Magazine, (Volume), Page(s).

Example: Davidson, J. (2008). Speak her language. Men's Health, (23), pp.104-106.

5. Citations for Websites

On today's date, websites are the best source of the latest and updated information on any topic. So, no wonder students find this source the most comfortable and convenient for interesting information. When referring to information from online websites, the below format should be followed:

a. When an author is listed

Last name, First initial. (Year of publishing). Page title. [Online] Website name. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Month. Year]

Example: Messer, L. (2015). 'Fancy Nancy' Optioned by Disney Junior. [Online]. ABC News. Available at: [Accessed 31 ar. 2015].

b. When the author is not listed

The website name (Year of publishing). Page title. [Online]. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Month. Year]

Example: Mms.com, (2015). M&M'S Official Website. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

6. Citations for eBooks and PDFs

PDFs and eBooks are the new trends of this era. These are the sources of information that are replacing traditional books. If you are referring to these as the source of information, then follow the below format:

Last name, First initial. (Year of Publishing). Title. Edition. [ebook or pdf] City: Publisher, page(s). Available at: URL [Date of Access in Date Month Year].

Example: Zuseck, L. (2012). The Book of Thieves. 1st ed. [ebook] New York: Sage, Publications. Available at: [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].
7. Citations for Artwork

For certain subjects, just the theory won't do any good. Art is mandatory to express emotions and depict the information. Since art is a bit different from the usual text, the referencing of art is also slightly different as:

Last name, First initial. (Year of Creation). Title. [Medium]. City where the art is/was displayed in Gallery or Museum.

Example: Gilbert, S. (1795-1796). George Washington. [Oil on Canvas] New York: The Frick Collection.
8. Citations for Blogs

In this 21st century, blogs are to information like a queen is to the chess game. This is also one of the most commonly used sources of information. So, when using this source, the format that should be followed is:

Last name, First initial. (Year Published). Post Title. [Blog] Blog name. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

Example: Cohen, M. (2013). Re-election Is Likely for McConnell, but Not Guaranteed. [Blog] FiveThirtyEight. Available at: [Accessed 4 Apr. 2015].
9. Citations for Broadcasts

Television broadcasts were introduced primarily to distribute information and spread it to the mass in one-way communication. Gradually, with an increase in demand, it is being used for entertainment purposes as well. But, when you are referring to information from this broadcasting, you should follow a proper format as:

The series title, (Year Published). [Type of Program] Channel number: Broadcaster.

Example: The Preston and Steve Morning Show (2012). [Radio Program] 93.3: WMMR.
10. Citations for Conference Papers

Conference papers are the articles prepared at the conferences to explain to the audience about the whole presentation. When conference papers are used for reference, the format to be used is:

a. If published online

Last name, First initial. (Conference Year). Title of Paper or Proceedings. In: Name or Title of Conference. [Online] City: Publisher of the Proceedings, pages. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

Example: Palmer, L., Grover, E. and Doublet, K. (2013). Advocating for Your Tech Program. In: National Conference for Technology Teachers. [Online] New York: NCTT, pp.33-34. Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2014].

b. If published offline 

Last name, First initial. (Conference Year). Title of Paper or Proceedings. In: Name or Title of Conference. City: Publisher of the Proceedings, pages. 

Example: Chang, SS, Liaw, L, & Ruppenhofer, J 9eds0 2000, Proceedings of the twenty-fifth annual meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society, February 12-15, 1999: general session and parasession on loan word phenomena. Berkeley Linguistics Soc., Berkeley.

11. Citations for Court Cases

Legal academic writings require information from court cases as well. But since these are legal writings, the citation is mandatory for this, and thus, here's the referencing format to be used here:

Case name [Year published] Report Abbreviation Volume number (Name or Abbreviation of Court); First page of the court case. 

Example: Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc. [2015]12-1226 (Supreme Court of the United States); 1.
12. Citations for Dictionary/Encyclopedia

Dictionary entries or information from the encyclopedia have no author; thus, there is no requirement for including the sources while citing them. Here's the right format of referencing for dictionary entries or encyclopedias:

a. If it's an encyclopedia

Last name, First initial. (Year of publication). Article title. In: Encyclopedia title, Edition. City of publication: Publisher, page(s).

Example: Harding, E. (2010). Anteaters. In: The International Encyclopedia of Animals, 3rd ed. New York; Reference World, p. 39.

b. If it's a dictionary

Last name, First initial. (Year of publication). Entry title. In: Dictionary Title, Edition. City: Publisher, page(s).

Example: Sporadic (1993). In: Webstin Dictionary, 8th ed. New York: Webstin LLC, page 223.
13. Citations for Dissertations

Dissertations are the academic documents prepared by doctorate pursuing students on any specific chosen topic. Since this is academic writing, this is quite informative and obviously a reliable source of information. Here's the format to cite them:

Last name, First initial. (Year of publication). Dissertation title. Academic Level of the Author. Name of University, College, or Institution.

Example: Fayadh, KH 2015, The legal regulation of assisted reproductive technology in Iraq: lessons from the Australian approach, thesis, Penrith, Western Sydney University, viewed 24 November 2015, Research Direct database.
14. Citations for DVD, Video, and Film

DVDs, videos, and films are another source of information on which people can rely easily. If you are seeking reference from these, then you can use the following format:

Film Title. (Year of publication). [Format] Place of Origin: Film Maker.

Example: 'Rules of the game' 1991, I'll fly away, television program, New York Broadcasting Company.
15. Citations for Emails

Emails can also be used as a source of information, and while using them, a student should follow the below-mentioned format:

Sender's Last Name, First Initial. (Year of publication). Subject Line of Email. [Email].

Example: Niles, A. (2013). Update on my health. [Email].

16. Citations for Government Publications

Government publications or reports are the documents issued by a government with respect to the compliance or non-compliance of any company. If you are using this as a source for your work, then you must follow a proper citation format:

Government Agency OR Last Name, First Initial., (Year of publication). Title of document or article. City of publishing: publisher, page(s).

Example: Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, (2012). BicyclePA Routes. Harrisburg: PENNDOT, p.1.
17. Citations for Interviews

Interviews are way more than one can think of. These are important to know about a person and their way of thinking, their hardships, achievements, and more. If you are seeking interviews for assistance, here's the referencing format to follow:

Last Name of Interviewer, First Initial. and Last name of Interviewee, First initial. (Year of Interview). Title or Description of Interview.

Example: Booker, C. and Lopez, J. (2014). Getting to know J. Lo.
18. Citations for Music or Recordings

If your source of information is music and recordings, then you need to cite it in a way different from the usual writings:

a. If the music piece is offline

Performer or Writer's Last Name, First Initial. (Year of publishing). Recording Title. [Medium] City of publishing: Music Label.

Example: Jackson, M. (1982). Thriller. [CD] West Hollywood: Epic.

b. If the music piece is online

Performer or Writer's Last Name, First Initial. (Year of publishing). Recording Title. [Online] City of publishing: Music Label. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

Example: Kaskade, (2015). Never Sleep Alone. [Online] Burbank: Warner Bros/Arkade. Available at: [Accessed 7 Apr. 2015].
19. Citations for Online Images or Videos

Online images and videos provide a good amount of information on various topics. This is why students usually prefer seeking help from online images or videos. And while doing so, students should follow this format:

Last Name, First Initial. OR Corporate Author. (Year of publishing). Title/description. [format] Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

Example: An offering to the ocean in La Punta, Peru 2009, image, The Sydney Morning Herald, 19 May, viewed 25 May 2009,.
20. Citations for Patents

Patents are the rights granted by an authority to a company. If you are considering patents as your source of information, then the below-mentioned referencing style can help you:

Last Name, First Initial. OR Corporate Author. (Year of publishing). Title/description of Patent. Patent number.

Example: Smith, PS 2002, A pump for use in windmill assembly, application no. 2008230011, 17 October, viewed 15 May 2009.
21. Citations for Podcasts

Podcasts are audio clips of information on any specific topic. These are the information sources that can be helpful in collecting reliable facts about the topic. Here's the format to be used for referencing the podcasts:

Last Name, First Initial. OR Corporate Author. (Year of publishing) Episode title.[Podcast]. Podcast title. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

Example: Atkin, M (Reporter) 2008, 'Bermagui forest disputed turf,' The Hack Half Hour, 13 November, podcast, viewed 31 March 2009.
22. Citations for Presentations and Lectures

Presentations and lectures are important and the most common sources of information. These sources include information on any important topic from subject professionals. You should use the below-mentioned referencing style for this:

Last Name, First Initial. (Year) Presentation title.

Example: Valenza, J. (2014). Librarians and Social Capital.

23. Citations for Press Releases

Press Releases are the latest mode of letting people know about the big announcements about any company or organization, and there is much more about this than known to any. If you are taking this into consideration as a source for your work, then you should follow this referencing style for the same:

a. For PRs found offline

Corporate Author, (Year Published). Title.

Example: Imagine Easy Solutions, (2015). ResearchReady Jr. Now Available For Elementary Age Students.

b. For PRs found online

Corporate Author, (Year of publishing). Title. [Online] Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

Example: EBSCO, (2014). EBSCO adds EasyBib Citation Integration. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan.2015].
24. Citations for Reports

Reports are the summarized outcomes of the study conducted on any topic. The citation rules of the reports here are based on the type of report and are as follows:

Last name, First initial. OR Corporate Author (Year of publishing). Title. [Online] City of publishing: Publisher, Pages used. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

Example: Certify, (2015). First Quarter, 2015 Business Expense Trends. [Online] Portland: Certify, p.2. Available at: [Accessed 8 Apr.2015].
25. Citations for Software

Some particular software comes with information that can be used in other works. At such times, this software is considered as the source of information. Thus, these are needed to be included in the content using the right citation format:

Title or Name of Software. (Year of publishing). Place or city where the software was written: Company or publisher.

Example: Espanol. (2010). Arlington: Rosetta Stone.

These are some referencing styles for citing sources at the end of the work. But if you want to cite them in-text, then you should look for the referencing styles mentioned in the below section.

In-Text Citations:

Here are a few popular in-text citations that you should consider for citing your sources at work. So, look into them carefully.

1.Citations for one author

a. If the author's name is not mentioned in the content

Here, the author's last name and the publishing year of the source are placed in a parenthesis.

Example: It is suggested that… (Andreasen 2001)

b. If the author's name is already mentioned in the content

Here, the author's name should be excluded from the in-text citation if it is already used in the body of the text.

Example: (Andreasen 2001) stated that…

2. Citations for 2 or 3 authors

When there are two authors in the source, they should be placed in the order they appear in the content, with 'and' word separating them.

Example: …is demonstrated (Schneider, Whitehead & Elliot 2007).

3. Citations for 4 or more authors

This is when 4 or more authors are used in the source, and then include only the first listed author's name for the in-text citation. It should be followed by "et al" and the publishing year.

Example: This has indicated… (Davis et al. 2003).

4. Citations for corporate authors

For the corporate authors, use the name of the organization in place of the author. 

Example: This can be seen… (Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia 2004).

5. Citations for no author

If the author's name is not found, then place the title text in the parenthesis, followed by the publishing year.

Example: This can be shown by… (Guide to Agricultural Meteorological Practices 1981).

These are a few in-text citation styles for referencing various sources in your work.

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