Referencing – new guide and software options
26 Feb 2103 – latest version on Referencing – new citation guide
The guide provides a brief introduction to referencing: both citing references to others’ work within the text of your assignment/thesis/paper, and compiling an accurate list of references.
The Harvard system (Harvard style) is based on Author – Date information in the text with a list of references at the end in alphabetical order. However, it does allow for some variation in the detailed formatting. For example:
A) Pears, R. and Shields, G. (2010) Cite them right: the essential referencing guide. 8th edn. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
B) FISHER, D., and HANSTOCK, T., 1998. Citing references: a guide for students. Blackwell.
The guide chooses A because all Manchester Business School course handbooks use uppercase and lowercase for authors’ names, rather than all uppercase (and an unscientific survey of descriptions of Harvard referencing had most with the publication year in brackets).
It is much, much easier to do the references in any assignment/paper/thesis if you keep a record of your related reading as you go along. There are a number of options for reference management:
- Manual (e.g. Word) - Simply create yourself a “my references” document, and as you read a paper/book/… add all the necessary reference information. When writing do your referencing by hand: cutting and pasteing from your references document as appropriate.
- EndNote – A sophisticated reference management system, available on all University of Manchester cluster PCs and supported by Library training sessions. ( JRUL EndNote Page, Endnote FAQs ) However you have to buy a personal copy to use on your own laptop (academic discount available).
- EndNote Web – Free to University of Manchester staff and students with our site licence for EndNote. (JRUL EndNote Web Page, EndNote Web FAQs) Well worth a try before buying your own personal copy of EndNote.
- Zotero – Free reference management software: originally a Mozilla Firefox browser plugin but now also available in a stand-alone version. Well regarded – for example Cambridge Business School library’s recent post Zotero: a new dawn for referencing
- Mendeley – Free reference management software like Zotero – adopts support for collaboration as its unique selling point.
If you have a small number of references it is relatively easy to do your referencing manually. However using reference management software can be a big help in getting your references organised and making it easy to produce a consistent professional set of references like you see in academic texts and journal articles.