2.4 How should sources be referenced at the end of a work?
A reference list includes all the sources of information that have been cited in a piece of work. The reference list is located at the end of the piece of work and is usually listed in alphabetical order of the authors of the different sources used.
Each in-text citation must have a corresponding entry in the reference list which is submitted with the assignment.
A bibliography includes all the sources used in the preparation of a piece of work - not just those that have been cited in the text of the work and included in a reference list. The bibliography is located at the end of the piece of work and is usually listed in alphabetical order of the authors of the different sources used.
Different resources, print and electronic, have different characteristics related to their type, format and the content they contain.
Each type of resource is cited and referenced in a slightly different way.
As you have already learnt, there is no universal referencing style and you should ask your teachers which style you should follow.
The four most common referencing styles are:
- Harvard (author-date)
- American Psychological Association (APA)
- Modern Language Association (MLA)
- Oxford (documentary-note or footnote referencing).
While you will need to look up the specific requirements of the style approved by your school, your focus should be on consistency in terms of:
Some useful links are in the Module Resources list.
Consider these situations
Q: You want to impress your teacher with the amount of research you have completed for your major assignment. You plan to list all the sources you can find that are related to your topic in your reference list, even though you haven't used them.
A: No. You are listing false information. Your teacher will have a sound knowledge of the topic and the sources. Your strategy is likely to highlight the lack of research you have completed and the superficial nature of the ideas and information presented in your assignment compared with the comprehensive nature of your reference list.
Q: You are trying to do the right thing by listing all the sources you have used in your reference list with the appropriate information and format but you are confused by all the different referencing styles.
A: You should ask your teacher which style of referencing is required and use that style of referencing throughout your assignment.
Work through each step in the module:
- 2.1 What is meant by 'acknowledging sources '?
- 2.2 Why should sources be acknowledged?
- 2.3 When and how should sources be acknowledged within the body of a work?
- 2.4 How should sources be acknowledged at the end of a work?
- 2.5 What strategies can students use in preparation for the acknowledgment of sources in their work?