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Harvard Style

This guide shows how to use the Harvard style of referencing


To quote is to directly use another’s words and to acknowledge the source. If you are quoting someone word-for-word or using someone else's ideas or statistics in your writing, you will need to reference it within the body of your assignment. 

Small quotations (less than 40 words) are included in your writing with the text in single  quotation marks. After the quote, add the author’s surname, the date of publication and the page number(s) of the quote.



Quotations longer than 40 words

If a quotation is longer than 40 words, no quotation marks are used, and the quotation is indented instead:




  • place a colon (:) at the end of your writing before the quote
  • leave a space of one line before and after the quotation
  • do not use quotation marks around the quotation
  • use a smaller font for the quote, e.g. if your assignment is in font 12, use 10 for the quotation
  • indent the quote
  • if your assignment is in double spacing, have the quotation in single spacing


Modifying a direct quotation


If you want to omit a word or words from a quotation, indicate this with an ellipsis (three dots) with a space before and after the ellipsis ( ... ). A direct quotation should neither start nor end with an ellipsis. Words should only be omitted from a quotation if they are superfluous to the reason why you are using the quotation and the meaning of the quote is not affected by the change.



Square Brackets

If you need to add a word or words to a quotation, or change the capitalisation of a word to fit with your writing, put the word(s)/letter in square brackets [ ]. Words should only be added to a quote for explanatory reasons (e.g. a name might be added to explain who a pronoun is referencing).




If you need to indicate a misspelling, grammatical error or lack of inclusive language, insert the word [sic] (meaning so or thus) in square brackets immediately following the error but do not change the error in the quotation.