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About this book

This concise and user-friendly guide explains why referencing is an essential part of good writing and shows students how to reference correctly. It also develops students’ understanding of what plagiarism is and how they can avoid it in their work. Featuring clear explanations and examples throughout, this book will help students to draw on the work of others in their field in a responsible and ethical way.

This is an indispensable resource for all students that need to get to grips with referencing.

Table of Contents

Understanding referencing

Frontmatter

1. The essentials of referencing

Abstract
This chapter gives a quick overview of why and how to reference. From here you can read on through Part 1 to get a better understanding of referencing as central to your research and writing. Or you can decide to fast forward to another part of the book. You can always come back later The one overarching reason why you need to reference is to show your reader where the evidence for what you say has come from. This will enable them to go and check the source themselves – traceability.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

2. Referencing styles

Abstract
This chapter outlines the main referencing styles used at university. Most courses will use a style from one of the two ‘families’ below, or local adaptations of these. You don’t need to know them all – check the ones used in the courses you take. In your work cite the surname of the author(s) at the point you draw on a source. In your reference list give the full details of each source in alphabetical order, so your reader can find it by surname of the first author. This guide uses Harvard except where we explicitly state that we are giving examples of other styles (see Part 5).
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

3. The research process and referencing tools

Abstract
Referencing is a great invention. It enables researchers of all levels, from eminent professor to first-year student, to show and share their research with their readers. Your reader will be able to see how your research has informed your thinking and understanding. Throughout your research, keep careful records, notes, and the full reference of every source you check out. You’ll do a lot of work before you get anywhere near planning and writing your assignment or essay. Your references are the record of your research. Look after them!. Before you start looking for sources to research your assignment or essay, you need to be clear about what exactly the task or question is asking you. Different questions can be researched through different kinds of sources.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

4. Referencing in action

Abstract
This chapter shows an extract from the literature review of an undergraduate dissertation. Alex, the writer, uses references in a way that shows exactly where he got his information from. He leaves clear footprints. in his work, at the exact point where he uses each source, pointing you to. the full reference list at the end, showing you, the reader, where to find each source yourself.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

Writing and referencing

Frontmatter

5. Using sources in your writing

Abstract
use an author as an authority to support what you are saying. introduce someone else’s perspective that you want to discuss. provide evidence of a trend or development that you are discussing. show differences between experts’ views and interpretations. show the difference between an author’s views and your own.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

6. Write with confidence

Abstract
Regina ( p52 ) and Alex (Chapter 4) are both capable student writers. As readers we are interested in what they have to say. This chapter takes a close look at the strategies, structures and language a writer can use – and inspire confi dence in their readers. As soon as your reader starts thinking these things, then as a writer you have a problem. You need to get in quicker and show your reader whose ideas you are writing about.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

Understanding plagiarism

Frontmatter

7. What is my own work?

Abstract
Many courses require students to sign a sheet saying the work is their own. You must have ticked dozens of boxes on websites to say you’ve read the terms and conditions (really?). But what are you signing up to when you sign: ‘This is my work’? We are talking about WORK here, not just about words. Parts 1 and 2 describe some of the work involved in writing good assignments: identifying sources, taking notes, linking your sources with your points and arguments … for starters. Then there’s the work of turning your ideas into words and the work of putting the whole thing together as a cogent piece of text.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

8. Getting help with your work

Abstract
When you first start working on an assignment, you may be thinking: It has to be ‘my own work’. Does that mean no one can help? No. You can and should ask others for help and advice when you need it. But what kind of help is acceptable? Here’s a simple test about asking for advice: Are you asking for advice or help so you can do the work? Or do it better? If the answer is ‘yes’, then that’s fine. Or is the ‘help’ really about getting someone else to do the work for you? This is not OK.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

9. Where do I draw the line?

Abstract
Think about where you draw the line between acceptable practices and plagiarism. Do the quiz below, thinking about how you work on your assignments. Each example puts you in the situation of a student working on an assignment and needing to make decisions about avoiding plagiarism. Imagine it is you and decide what is acceptable and what could be plagiarism.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

10. Use of Turnitin (Feedback Studio)

Abstract
Turnitin (Feedback Studio), the electronic text matching tool, is now used by most universities worldwide. Understanding plagiarism at university includes understanding some things about Turnitin. Coloured matches to uses of the same words in the same order as Calculations of percentages representing how much of the submitted work can be matched to other texts (overall amount and breakdown of individual matches). The extract below shows the matching of a source text, ranked 5, calculated as 1% of the work submitted by the student.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

Referencing: the practicalities

Frontmatter

11. Frequently asked questions

Abstract
In Harvard and many other referencing styles (APA, Chicago author/date, Vancouver), the Reference list or ‘References’ is a list of all the sources you have referred to in your writing. This is what most tutors require. A bibliography is a list of everything you have read on a subject, including background reading, whether you refer to it or not. You may occasionally be asked for a bibliography (of your reading to date); for example when your tutor wants to see where you have got to in your research for a dissertation proposal. If you are asked for a bibliography for a finished piece of work, divide it into two sections.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

12. Essential sources and examples

Abstract
This chapter gives examples of references from the most frequently used sources: books, journal articles and internet sources (Harvard style).
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

13. More examples of references

Abstract
You will by now have identified a broad pattern to the information you need to record in a reference for any source you use. A reference is the answer to the strategic questions you ask yourself about any source you encounter. Who wrote it?. When was it published?. What is the source? The title? What kind of source is it?.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

Other referencing styles

Frontmatter

14. Vancouver style

Abstract
Vancouver is most commonly used in science, medicine and related subjects. The numeric style focuses the reader’s attention on the research. References have logical but minimal punctuation and no unnecessary words to distract from the communication between scientists. Vancouver numeric referencing style works like this.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

15. MHRA style Modern Humanities Research Association

Abstract
This referencing style is used in some arts and humanities subjects. It allows readers to see immediately the source of information or to get a glimpse of a discussion point on the same page as the text. The citation in the text makes the link to the footnote with a number, usually in superscript. Sources are first shown in footnotes at the bottom of the page, in the order in which they occur throughout the essay or article, or, less often, as endnotes at the end. All sources, and other sources read but not cited, are collected together in a full bibliography at the end.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

16. APA style American Psychological Association

Abstract
This style is used in subjects related to psychology and in some other social science subject areas. It is very similar to Harvard. The extract and comments below illustrate where APA is different to Harvard.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis

17. MLA style Modern Language Association

Abstract
This style is used in arts and literature subjects where detailed discussion requires precise and repeated referencing, often to specific quoted phrases. The citation in the text is the author and page number, making the link to the Works Cited (not References) listed in alphabetical order by surname at the end.
Kate Williams, Mary Davis
Additional information