When you create academic work, whether this is in the form of an essay, report, presentation or plan, you need to use evidence to back up the arguments that you wish to make. Evidence can be in the form of information from academic books and journals, informed internet sites, newspapers, government documents, radio and television broadcast media etc. When you use this evidence in your work you need to make sure that you acknowledge the fact that you have done this. We use the Harvard Method of referencing to demonstrate this. The following sites might be helpful in advising you in how you should acknowledge sources, both in the body of your work, and in the bibliography at the end of your work.

Sometimes you might want to quote a source word for word, but most of the time you will need to acknowledge sources without quoting, because your essay should not merely be a list of word for word quotes stuck together which is very poor scholarship (see Plagiarism: How to avoid it).

The following YouTube video discusses how to use and cite sources effectively, without quoting them, and then how to reference them correctly.

How to cite sources: Citing without quoting

In order to create a bibliography, some students have reported ‘Neil’s Toolbox’ as being a useful way of generating bibliographical references with the ‘Harvard reference generator’. This generates references for books, book chapters, Journals, websites and emails.

Neil’s Toolbox:

For some more complicated references you might find this Harvard Referencing Manual from the University of Leicester useful. This resource is available for anyone to use as it has been released under a creative commons licence. This means that the information has been created for anyone to use.

Harvard Referencing Manual:

We also have Refworks available to students at the University of Lincoln. This enables you to create working bibliographies for your essays using write and cite.

Refworks at Lincoln

There is some on-line help for this

Students at the University of Lincoln can also contact the subject librarian for the school of Social and Political Studies, for advice on Refworks and other things to do with using references and finding sources. She is called Marie Nicholson.


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