Why use referencing?

Referencing is used to acknowledge other people’s work used to create your own work. This can include such things as an idea, exact words, artwork, a diagram, an image or a table that is used in a piece of writing or non-written text. Referencing shows respect for other people’s intellectual rights and avoids plagiarism. It also enables the reader to follow up on the work of other authors and creators referred to in the piece of work.

What system of referencing should be used?

There are a number of referencing styles available for use. Different institutions/publishers use their own style and/or variation of a referencing system, so slight differences may be observed. Detailed descriptions of these systems are generally made available via the institution/publisher’s website. Some examples of these sites are listed at the end of this document.

The purpose of all referencing systems is to acknowledge the work of others and to enable readers/viewers to find the referenced material. Referencing of new source types, such as emerging technologies, use the same basic principles and are consistent with the referencing style being used.

It is easier for students and teachers if a school adopts and teaches a consistent referencing system. The examples of referencing used in this guide are based on the Harvard referencing system, also known as the Author–Date system.

What if students already use a different system of referencing?

Examples included here are intended as a guide only. Other approaches to referencing might already be in place in some schools. They are also appropriate to use.

The main advice is that the style should remain consistent throughout a piece of work.

Referencing style

Referencing style can require three types of acknowledgment:

1)     In-text acknowledgement (see Part A below)

a)     When quoting another’s words, the indentation of text (for sentences, see Part A, 1) or use of quotation marks (for a phrase, line, or two, see Part A, 2) as well as brief reference

b)     To identify another’s ideas, words, artwork, diagrams, images or tables, brief reference (author, date, page number/s) immediately following the text (see Part A, 3)

2)     Footnotes and endnotes (see Part B below)

Footnotes and endnotes are easy to use and do not break the flow of text.  They are used in literature, history, and the arts where source materials may have lengthy reference information.  Generally, footnotes are used for a small number of citations and endnotes for large numbers or lengthy endnotes. Consecutive superscript numbers are placed in the text and corresponding footnotes are located at the bottom of the same page as the text to which they refer.  End notes are placed at the end of a chapter or the end of the complete piece of work.

3)     Reference list and/or bibliography (see Part C below)

Place at the end of your work. It should contain full source details. Use the detailed guidelines in Part D to assist in creating the list.

Referencing and word count

Refer to the SACE Word-count Policy.

The word count includes headings, direct quotations, and footnotes that are used as explanatory notes. The word count does not include the title/question page, the contents page, the reference list or bibliography (including footnotes or in-text references that are used to list author, date, and page numbers), and appendices. A reference list or bibliography that is required for an assessment task is not included in the word-count, but will be assessed for accuracy and consistency.

How to reference new types of sources

Reference new source types (e.g. web-references, blogs, Twitter) using the same principles you would use to reference the more traditional materials.

This guide sets out the basic principles of referencing and gives a variety of examples. However, if your particular reference still doesn’t match any of the examples given here, follow the basic principles and format as for more traditional types using this guide.

Sections following in these guidelines

Part A – In-text acknowledgement

Part B – Footnotes and endnotes

Part C – Reference List and/or Bibliography

Part D – Examples of citing various types of sources

Part E – Acknowledging the use of AI

Part A     In-text acknowledgment

When quoting in running text, always include:

·        author

·        date

·        page number or location reference where specific text is referred to.


1. How to quote sentences from another author

Note: You must keep this to a minimum to ensure that what you submit for assessment is your own work.  This is used in cases of 30 words or more.

Set out the quotation in a separate block of text, by:

· Indenting from the margin


Introduce a long quotation with a colon


using a smaller font size or italicising the text.



At the time of the European colonisation the Australian landscape was portrayed as untouched wilderness. In fact, Indigenous Australians were using various techniques, particularly fire, to manage the land:

Leave a line above and below the quote


Indent from the margin



… the explorers were not pushing out into wilderness, they were trekking through country that had been in human occupation for hundreds of generations. It was land that had been skilfully managed and shaped by continuous and creative use of fire. (Reynolds 2000, p.20)

Identify author, year of publication and page number at the end of the quote.  If the date is unknown use n.d.


Use a different font than the rest of the text (e.g., make smaller or italicise)







2. How to quote a few words from an author

Include the words in the normal setting of the sentence.  This is used in cases of less than 30 words.



Add page number after the quote, plus author and year of publication if not referred to earlier in the sentence.


Reynolds (2000) argues that the Australian landscape was ‘skilfully managed and shaped’ (p. 20) by Aboriginal people through the use of fire.

Use single quotation marks around the quoted words.



3. How to acknowledge another author’s ideas without quoting their exact words

When paraphrasing another person’s words — putting them into your own words — you must still acknowledge your source because you are referring to someone else’s ideas or claims.

When referring to an idea or works that are not your own, you must back up your claim with documentary evidence.


Refer to the author in your sentence.


Follow with year of publication and page number in brackets.




More recent studies, including those by Ward and Foot (1999, p.6), note increasing dissatisfaction with how the taxation system handles superannuation.


PART B      Footnotes and endnotes


In text

The information that Columbus wanted most was: Where is the gold? 1


Corresponding footnote at the bottom of the page or endnote

  1. Howard Zinn, A People’s History of the United States: 1492 – Present (New Tork: Harper Collins Publishers, 2005), 2










When referencing a source for the first time the footnote or endnote should be a full citation, including:

  • Author’s first name, then surname, title of article, book etc.(in italics), editors where applicable, publisher name and location, and year published
  • exact page numbers should be given if the reference is a direct quotation, a paraphrase, an idea, an image, chart, graphic or visual support direct from the source


For subsequent references, include:

  • author’s surname
  • exact page numbers


Latin abbreviations can be used to simplify subsequent references

  • op.cit., meaning ‘in the work cited’ can be used with the author’s name and page number where a full citation has already been given.
  • Ibid., meaning ‘in the same place’ can be used when the citation is the same as the previous one, with page numbers included if these are different.


1.     Howard Zinn, A People’s History of the United States: 1492 – Present (New York: Harper Collins Publishers, 2005), 2

2.     ibid., 16

3.     ibid., 24



1.     Howard Zinn, A People’s History of the United States: 1492 – Present (New York: Harper Collins Publishers, 2005), 2

2.     Robert Geise, American History to 1877 (New York: Barron’s Educational Services, 1992), 4

3.     Zinn, op.cit., 14


Part C    Reference List and/or Bibliography

A reference list is a full list of all publications referred to in the work. It is placed at the end. A bibliography differs in that it also includes publications that are not specifically referred to in the work. It is also placed at the end.

Order of elements of a citation (i.e. a reference to a source)

  1. Author and Date (The Harvard or Author-Date style of referencing).
  2. The details of the citation should be organised in the order shown in the table below. Include only what is appropriate for your source type.
  3. The basic elements to use are shown in bold in the table below. When organising your citation look for the basic elements first and then use them in the order shown in the table.
  4. Finally clarify your citation with the other elements if they apply to your source.


1.        Author

2.        Date

3.        Title
(in italics if published), or
‘Article’, Journal, or
‘Chapter’, in Book

4.        Editor / translator / compiler

5.        Edition (if identified as 2nd, 3rd, revd, etc.)

6.        Volume no. / Volume title (if applicable)

7.        Other publication details (e.g. day, month)

8.        Series title (if applicable) and volume number within series if series is numbered

9.        Medium (e.g. DVD, CD-ROM, podcast but not book, Internet, as this will be self-evident)

10.     Publisher, place

11.    Page number or numbers (if a chapter in a book or article in newspaper/journal)

12.     URL

13.     Access date


Referencing guides often use slightly different punctuation. You should use the same punctuation style consistently throughout your work.

A style that is simple to follow and widely used in Australia is that described in the Style manual for authors, editors and printers (2002), in which the elements are divided by a comma and finished with a full stop.

Order of citations

Order the list alphabetically by the first word or words of the entry, ignoring definite and indefinite articles (a, an, the).




Part D    Examples of citing various types of sources

Type of source

How to cite in text

How to list in the References or Bibliography







(Clark & Cook 1983)

Clark, IF & Cook, BJ (eds), 1983, Geological science: Perspectives of the earth, Australian Academy of Science, Canberra.

No author appears on title page. List by editor(s).

Book etc., with four or more authors

(Henkin et al. 2006)

Henkin, RE, Bova, D, Dillehay, GL, Halama, JR, Karesh, SM, Wagner, RH & Zimmer, MZ 2006, Nuclear medicine, 2nd edn, Mosby Elsevier, Philadelphia.

‘Et al.’ is short for et alia, meaning ‘and others’.

Book chapter

(Kanengoni 1997)

Kanengoni, A 1997, ‘Effortless tears’, in Under African skies, ed. C Larson, Payback Press, Edinburgh, pp. 289-295.

·        Chapter title in single quotation marks

·        Editor signified with ‘ed.’

·        Page numbers of the chapter.


Book with government author

(SA. DEH 2007)

or (and this will require cross-reference in References)

(No Species loss, 2007)                 


(SA. DENR 1995)

South Australia. Department for Environment and Heritage 2007, No species loss: A nature conservation strategy for South Australia 2007–2017, DEH, Adelaide.
No species loss 2007 see South Australia. Department for Environment and Heritage (2007).

South Australia. Department of Environment and Natural Resources 1995, South Australia: Our water our future, DENR, [Adelaide].

·        Name of government and government body

·        Date of publication [or most likely date in square brackets, if none given]

·        Title

·        Individual author (if named)

·        Report number

·        Publisher and place.

Sometimes the publisher organisation is also the author.


Encyclopaedias and dictionaries

If there is no author include the information in parentheses in the text:

… (Encyclopaedia Britannica)

Otherwise, treat as a newspaper article.

Brown.J (ed) 2006, Encyclopaedia of Bicycles, vols 3-5, XY Press, Hawthorn Vic.


·        title (italics)

·        edition, if not first

·        ‘heading’, if there is one






Journal article

Norton et al. (2001) discuss …

Norton, K, Dollman, J, Klanarong, S & Robertson, I 2001, ‘Playing safe: Children in sport’, Sport Health, vol. 19, no. 3, pp. 12–14.

Where there are four or more authors:

·        cite the first name only in the text, followed by ‘et al.’ (et alia – and others)

·        list all authors in the reference list.


Journal article that can be accessed online

Abel (2001) presents …

Abel, EL 2001, ‘The gin epidemic: Much ado about what?’ Alcohol and Alcoholism, vol. 36, no. 5, pp. 401–5, accessed 11 January 2010, <

Check that the URL is current. If the article is no longer available online but you have previously accessed it, state the date you previously accessed it.

Newspaper article

Oaten (2002) describes how to …

Oaten, C 2002, ‘Open your house to the sun’, The Advertiser, 6 September, p. 31.

·        article title in single quotation marks

·        newspaper title in italics

·        date and month of article page number






Television program, broadcast

A Lateline episode (ABC 2012) reports how the homeland of residents of very low lying mud islands is in trouble.  

ABC 2012, Lateline, television program, ABC, 7 December.


Include title of program, date watched/listened and, if available:

·        ‘episode title’ (in single quotes) and number

·        names of key performers, if relevant

·        broadcast venue

·        date of original broadcast.

Film / DVD

In the film Escape to Grizzly Mountain (Dalesandro 1999) …

Dalesandro, A (dir) 1999, Escape to Grizzly Mountain, motion picture, 20th Century Fox




·        format

special credit to director at the end of the citation.








Rainfall and Temperature records show … (Australian Government BOM 2015).

Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology, Rainfall and Temperature Records, accessed 4th June 2015, <>.



·        author, or person/organisation responsible for the website 

·        title of the page (from the browser’s title bar) in italics

·        date: last update, copyright date, or n.d. if no date is available

·        URL.


Website: article

Higher temperatures and melting glaciers are changing mountain ecosystems (FAO 2007).

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations 2007, ‘Climate change causing species disappearance in mountain areas’, FAO NewsRoom 11 December, accessed 18 December 2007, <>.



Website: Television Program






… (Four Corners 2004)…




Four Corners 2004, City limits: Australia’s urban water crisis, 18 October, extended broadband version, ABC Television, accessed 11 January 20,

<, 10>.



Include also:

·        format

·        URL

·        access date

·        enough information that, if the URL changes, the reader can still search for it.



Website: video file

Japan came under attack again … (‘Japan under fire …’, 2007)

‘Japan under fire for whaling’, 2007, NineMSN News, 18 December, daily views 1018, Windows Media Player video file, .

Include enough information to be able to find the source again if the URL changes.

YouTube video

Rider’s Urban Sprawl YouTube video shows how …


Rider (2009) shows how …


Rider, J 2009, Urban Sprawl: A Sim City 4 Demonstration, video, accessed 11 January 2010, <>.


·        author / producer (if identifiable)

·        year

·        title

·        format

The person who posted the video is not necessarily the author or producer.


Include information in parentheses:

… (Bun 2008)

Or work it into the text:

Bun (2008) reports on …

Bun, M 2008, ‘Rising sea levels’, presented by R. Williams, Ockham’s Razor, Radio National, podcast, 31 August, accessed 11 January 2010, <

·        Set out as for journal article or chapter in a book.

The word ‘website’ is not included because the publisher’s name is repeated in acronym in the URL.


In an email letter to the writer 6 May 2007, the Mayor of the City of XXX said …


The Mayor of the City of XXX (email message to writer, 15 April, 2007) promised that …

Climp.F Researching Sport, personal communication, 15 April, 2007.



·        author

·        name of the list

·        date of the posting

If archived, include the URL and access date.


(Barry 2010)

Barry, G 2010, ‘Earth meanders: Resisting global ecological change’, Climate Ark, 5 January 2010, viewed 29 March 2010, <http://www.......>.


·        author of entry

·        title of article

·        title of weblog

·        type of website, i.e. blog

·        URL

·        access date

If paraphrasing or direct quotation use as for other source types.

Social Networking Sites


In a Twitter post on January 12, 2013, James

Legg (@JLegg) wrote, ’Present government has no idea. Need to listen to people’.

Foot or End  note

James Legg, January 12, 2013, 12.16 p.m., Twitter post,

James Legg January 12, 2013, 12.16 p.m., Twitter post, <>.


·        name of poster

·        date of posting

·        access time

·        URL.


Phone Applications

Include information in parentheses:

..(Skyscape 2013)

Skyscape 2013, Skyscape Medical Resources (Version 1.17.42) [Mobile application software],retrieved from <>.


Text Generative AI (such as ChatGPT)

Include the reference in parentheses:

… (Open AI, 2023)…

Or work it into the text:

ChatGPT named four films that were influenced by Hamlet: The Lion King, Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead, The Bad Sleep Well and Strange Brew (Open AI, 2023).

Open AI (2023) “Which films have been influenced by Shakespeare’s Hamlet” ChatGPT (May 8, 2023) <>


·        the developer of the AI tool

·        the name of the tool

·        what prompt was entered for that information

·        the date that the text was generated.

If you need to reference multiple prompts add a letter of the alphabet to the end of the year in your in-text reference and bibliography eg. (Open AI, 2023a). This is so your prompts can be connected clearly to the reference.

Image Generative AI (such as Dall-E)

Include the reference and prompt in parentheses in the text or as a caption for the image:

…(Open AI, “Dog riding a skateboard”, 2023)…

Or work it into the text:

I started with a reference image using Dall-E with the prompt “dog riding a skateboard” (Open AI, 2023).

Open AI (2023) “Dog riding a skateboard” Dall-E (May 8, 2023) <>


·        the developer of the AI tool

·        the name of the tool

·        what prompt was entered for that image

·        the date that the image was generated.

If you need to reference multiple prompts add a letter of the alphabet to the end of the year in your in-text reference and bibligoraphy.





Interviews (unpublished)

Weave information into the text, e.g.

I interviewed Jay Smith in March this year, and asked him what advice he has to give young tennis players …

In an interview conducted on 3 March 2008, Mr J. Smith stated that …

I’ll call him David. That’s not his real name, but he sleeps in the parklands and agreed to talk to me about how he copes.


Smith, J 2008, Interview by [your name], Adelaide, 3 March.

Interview with a homeless person, 2008, by [your name], 6 June.

If listing in references:

·        treat interviewed person as author

·        make the context clear obtain interviewee’s permission to use the interview in your work.

Personal Communication

(e.g. surveys sent and received by email or telephone conversations)

See Interviews (unpublished)

In a survey communicated by email on 10 July 2011, the Manager of Café Three at Salisbury, Mr Peter Jones, indicated that …


In a telephone conversation on 10 July 2011, Mr Peter Jones, the Manager of Café Three at Salisbury, highlighted the …


Jones, P 2011, surveyed by [your name], Adelaide, 10 July.

Jones, P (2011), survey prepared by [your name] on…

If listing in references:

·        treat person who completed the survey as author

·        make the context clear

obtain permission from the person completing the survey to use their responses in your work.


Paintings, sculptures, photographs, other artworks

Include information in parentheses:

… (Pollock Blue poles, 1952, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra) …

Or work it into the text:

Controversial at the time it was purchased, Pollock’s 1952 painting Blue poles, hanging in the National Gallery of Australia, illustrates …


Artworks and Live performances that cannot be easily recovered should be referred to in detail in-text.

Images of recoverable artworks should reference where it is located using standard  formatting.

SACB 2009, Image of cat and pig, SACB, 10 June, viewed

 27 July 2013,

< html>.


·        name of artist

·        title (italics for paintings and sculptures, quotation marks for photographs)

·        name of gallery location.

Live performances (theatre, music, dance)

Include information in parentheses:

… (Much ado about nothing, directed by J Bell 2011, opening scene)


Bell, J (dir.) 2011, Much ado about nothing, by W Shakespeare, theatre performance, 8 April- 14 May 2011, Bell Shakespeare Company, Drama Theatre, Sydney Opera House, viewed 10 April 2011.


Poetry (classic)

Poetry lines:

[author first name / lastname] [Poem title], verse [x], lines [x-xx]

Or work it into the text:

Tennyson’s hero is unlike Homer’s; he has no definite end in view (lines 57-64)

 James, K 1997, ‘Broken  tears’,  Pictures from Mars, ed. C. Greene, Poetry Press, Edithburgh, SA, pp. 28-29.

If you quote from the introduction or notes, you should list the edition in the reference list.



(Mason 1832)

Mason, J 1832, Map of the countries lying between Spain and India, 1:8,000,000, Ordnance Survey, London

If the cartographer is unknown:

·        Title of map

·        Year

·        Scale of map

·        Publisher

·        Place of publication


Part E          Acknowledging the use of AI

When using generative AI in your work, you should include an acknowledgement which lets the reader know which tools you used and which prompts you entered. This is particularly important if you have used AI tools in your work but not directly in a way that would require referencing.

When referencing AI tools you should:

  • Provide the detail of which technology was used
  • List the prompts that you have used and the date
  • What you did with the output of the prompts.

For example:

In my essay, I used Open AI’s ChatGPT ( to begin my search. The prompts I used were:

  • What are the main themes of Hamlet (May 3, 2023)
  • Who are the main characters in Hamlet (May 3, 2023)
  • Which films have been influenced by Shakespeare’s Hamlet (May 8, 2023)
  • What connections are there between The Lion King and Hamlet (May 8, 2023)

These prompts were used to make a list of ideas that I then refined to use for my essay.
References on which this advice is based

Chicago manual of style, 2003, 15th edn, University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Style manual for authors, editors and printers, 2002, 6th edn, revised by Snooks & Co., John Wiley & Sons Australia, Milton, Qld.

Turabian, KL 2005, A manual for writers of research papers, theses, and dissertations: Chicago style for students and researchers, 7th edn, University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Monash University: Learn HQ, Acknowledging the use of generative artificial intelligence <>

For more information

Most universities and libraries offer information on Harvard Referencing on their websites. These are updated from time to time. The websites listed below offer useful guides.

When accessing these guides, remember that individual institutions adopt slight variations in their own ‘house style’, and one might be slightly different to the next, particularly in punctuation. It is more important to use one style consistently in your document, following the principles outlined in this guide (which appear in all guides), than slavishly trying to follow the details of different style guides.

  • Learning Connection, 2007, Referencing using the Harvard Author-Date System, (revd), University of South Australia, accessed 11 January 2010,
  • Library and Learning Development, 2007, University of Wollongong Author-Date (Harvard) Referencing Guide, University of Wollongong, accessed 11 January 2010,
  • Division of Teaching and Learning Services, 2007, Central Queensland University, Harvard (author-date) referencing guide, accessed 29 December 2011,,.
  • Griffith University Referencing Tool, nd., accessed 22 May 2014, <>

Further advice on footnotes and endnotes is given in various places on the internet, including:

a.     The Department of Modern History at Macquarie University,

b.     University of South Australia,

c.      New South Wales Board of Studies ‘All My Own Work’ program




* This document was revised in June 2023

Post a Comment

Previous Next

نموذج الاتصال