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Library and Knowledge Service for NHS Ambulance Services in England - Harvard System

This is an indicative standard for the Harvard Citation System. Use this standard if you have not been specifically recommended another to use. This Guide is based on the BU Guide to Citation in the Harvard Style produced by Bournemouth University.

Section 1. Citation in the text

Quotations – as a general rule, if the quote is less than a line it may be included in the body of the text in quotation marks. Longer quotations are indented and single-spaced, quotation marks are not required. For citations of particular parts of the document the page numbers etc. should be given after the year in round brackets.

Summaries or paraphrases – give the citation where it occurs naturally or at the end of the relevant piece of writing.

Diagrams, illustrations – should be referenced as though they were a quotation if they have been taken from a published work.

If details of particular parts of a document are required, e.g. page numbers, they should be given after the year within the round brackets.

Rules for citation in text for printed documents also apply to electronic documents except where page numbers are absent. If an electronic document does not include page numbers or an equivalent internal referencing system, the extent of the item may be indicated in terms such as the total number of lines, screens, etc., e.g. "[35 lines]" or "[approx. 12 screens]".


1. If the author’s name occurs naturally in the sentence, the year is given in round brackets:-

e.g. In a popular study Harvey (1992) argued that we have to teach good practices…

e.g. As Harvey (1992, p.21) said, “good practices must be taught and so we…

2. If the name does not occur naturally in the sentence, both name and year are given in round brackets:-

e.g. A more recent study (Stevens 1998) has shown the way theory and practical work interact.

e.g. Theory rises out of practice, and once validated, returns to direct, or explain the practice (Stevens 1998).

3. When an author has published more than one cited document in the same year, these are distinguished by adding lower case letters (a,b,c, etc.) after the year and within the round brackets:-

e.g. Johnson (1994a) discussed the subject…

4. If there are two authors the surnames of both should be given:-

e.g. Matthews and Jones (1997) have proposed that… 

5. If there are more than two authors the surname of the first author only should be given, followed by et al.:-

e.g. Office costs amount to 20% of total costs in most business (Wilson et al. 1997)

A full listing of names should appear in the bibliography.

6. If the work is anonymous then “Anon. should be used:-

e.g. In a recent article (Anon. 1998) it was stated that…

7. If it is a reference to a newspaper article with no author the name of the paper can be used in place of “Anon. :-

e.g. More people than ever seem to be using retail home delivery (The Times 1996)

You should use the same style in the bibliography.

8. If you refer to a source directly quoted in another source you cite both in the text:-

e.g. A study by Smith (1960 cited Jones 1994) showed that…

You should list only the work you have read, i.e. Jones, in the bibliography.

9. If you refer to a contributor in a source you cite just the contributor:-

e.g. Software development has been given as the cornerstone in this industry (Bantz 1995).

See Section 2 below for an explanation of how to list contributions (chapters in books, articles in journals, papers in conference proceeding) in the bibliography.

10. If you refer to a person who has not produced a work, or contributed to one, but who is quoted in someone else’s work it is suggested that you should mention the person’s name and you must cite the source author:-

e.g. Richard Hammond stressed the part psychology plays in advertising in an interview with Marshall (1999).

e.g. “Advertising will always play on peoples’ desires, Richard Hammond said in a recent article (Marshall 1999, p.67).

You should list the work that has been published, i.e. Marshall, in the bibliography.