For help with referencing styles or using referencing software please contact Emma Green

Referencing styles

Reerencing styles

When writing out references it is normal practice to use a specific style to ensure that all your references are recorded in the same fashion making them easier to understand and to avoid plaguarism.

Referencing styles are standards for a reference that dictate where and when to use italics, full stops, and such like when writing your bibliography.    

The University of Birmingham encourages the use of the Harvard Referencing System which is an author/date system and produces a result for a journal article that looks like this:

Myers, N. (2003b) Biodiversity hotspots revisited. Bioscience, 53(10): 916-917

or like this for a book:

Walshe, K. and Smith, J. (2011) Healthcare Management. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

For help with referencing go to iCite, the university website dedicated to helping students with all aspects of referencing.

You can also consult:

•  Using the Harvard System at the University of Birmingham(webpage)

•  Preparing and quoting references using the Harvard System (PDF)

Referencing software

There are many software packages that help you with referencing.  They can save references from a variety of sources such as bibliographic databases, catalogues, full text journal web sites.  They also interact with Word helping you to cite your references in text and create bibliographies in the style you require.

End Note is a computer based package and is the only one that has IT support from the IT Helpdesk.  It is installed on all computers on campus and can be used free of charge.  

However if you are a predominantly working off campus (i.e. a distance learner) or are not a member of the university you will need to purchase that are available to buy (members of the university can buy them at a discounted rate).

RefWorks is a web based package available free to all university members - to access it log into the FindIt@Bham and search for "RefWorks".  However access to this package will expire at the end of your time at the university.

"Learn how to use Refworks in 20 minutes!" - click on the link to view some great video tutorials on using Refworks.

Mendeley is a free web based package available to anybody.  Mendeley has accompanying apps for iPads and iPhonesand android phones.

Visit the Mendeley channel on You Tube

Bear in mind:

If you use a computer based package you will not need an Internet connection to access your reference database but you will only be able to do so when using the one computer that has your software installed. 

If you are using a web based package you will be able to access your reference database from any computer, but you will need an Internet connection to do so.