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Modern Languages library guide

Referencing and Plagiarism


Why should I reference?

Referencing is important in academic writing and an essential part of any of your assignments. It:

  • allows you to acknowledge your sources,
  • gives academic credibility to your work,
  • demonstrates your knowledge of a subject area,
  • prevents accusations of plagiarism.

What is plagiarism?

"The action or practice of taking someone else's work, ideas, etc., and passing it off as one's own; literary theft" (Oxford English Dictionary)

What should I reference?

You should always reference a source when:

  • using a direct quote
  • summarising a theory
  • discussing someone else's opinion
  • using case studies
  • quoting statistics or visual data
  • but not when stating your own opinion, observation or experience.


Referencing Handbook

The Library's new guide to Harvard referencing.

The guide is available as:

  • A free handbook - pick up your copy from the Library helpdesk.

Harvard referencing handbook 

This is the Library's guide to Harvard referencing. The Library recommends that you check with your tutor before using this guide as they may have produced their own guidelines.