What are the different referencing systems used in assignment writing?

Referencing plays a major part in the assignment writing process. Writing assignment almost always required thorough research on the topic. At certain points the writer may need to refer a quote/ sentence from another writer and state it in his own assignment. However providing another writer’s piece of work as your own is prohibited and is a form of plagiarism. Hence it is vital to provide reference to such work of others which you have stated in you piece of writing.

This document briefly covers some of the more commonly used referencing systems when writing assignments.

Harvard – This style of referencing is mainly used among students studying in universities. The Harvard referencing style includes two types of citations;

  1. in-text citations: This is used when quoting from a source directly.
  2. Reference lists: This list is available at the end of the article and gives a full description of the sources used when writing the document.

APA – This is a reference style found by the American Psychological Association. Hence the reason for its name APA. This type of referencing is used by students in schools as well universities. This method also has two types of citations, namely in-text citation and reference lists.

Chicago – The Chicago manual of style has two main systems.

  1. Notes and bibliography
  2. Author date

Choosing between the two may differ according to the type of research and source.

MLA – The MLA style of referencing uses in-text citations instead of footnotes. The in-text citation will be very brief often only portraying the important facts whereas a full list of workings will be stated at the end of the document.

IEEE – The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) referencing style is used in the publications related to electronics, computer and technology. Hence it more of a technical forms of referencing style. This style is also used among University students studying in the fields on Electronics and Information Technology.

The method involves in-text references, where there references are numbered according to the order it appears in the document and reference list, where the full details of the references are stated at the end of the document.

These are some of the commonly used type of citation methods. However there are many more ways you can follow in order to avoid plagiarism and refer the work of others used in your piece of writing. At the end referencing plays a very important role in any form of academic writing.

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