Correct referencing acknowledges the ideas of others and ensures the academic integrity of your own work. Most importantly, correct referencing helps avoid plagiarism.

When writing assignments, it is important to understand  Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

For more information on why referencing is important, see the video below.

How to reference 

1. Follow a referencing style 

Unit Guides specify the referencing style to use in assignments. If unsure, check with the tutor or Unit Co-ordinator. Follow the Referencing Style Guides provided by the Library. It is important to be consistent with the referencing style followed. Occasionally a tutor will provide guidance which is different to the Library's Referencing Style Guides - you should follow that advice. 

2. Identify the resource type 

The resource type determines the details you need to record to create a reference. For example, different details are needed for a book, a chapter of a book, a journal article, a video or a website.  

3. Collect publication details  

Note the details of a resource as it is evaluated and used. The Referencing Style Guide specifies the details needed for each resource type.  In broad terms, the details to note include who created each source, when was it created, what it is called and where it was published: 

The creator of a resource is typically the author, but could also be an editor, organisation, director, or artist.


This is the year of publication, but could also be a specific date for a resource such as a newspaper article. 

WhatThis is the title of the resource. Journal articles need the article title, as well as the journal title. Book chapters need the chapter title, as well as the book title.
WhereThe details needed on the place of publication depend on the type of resource being referenced. A journal article needs the volume, issue and page numbers of the journal it appeared in, as well as a DOI where one is provided, or web address (depending on the reference style). eBooks need a web address or a Digital Object Identifier (DOI). Print books need the name of the publisher and the place of publication. 

4. Compile the reference list 

Once you have collected all the information, you can start creating your reference list. Use the examples from your referencing guide to create a reference and in-text citation for each of your resources.  Make sure you put everything in the correct order, and follow the guide on using punctuation, capitalisation and italics. You should only include references to resources you have used in your assignment.

For more information on how to reference properly, see the video below.

Need help?

For help understanding referencing, Ask our Librarians.