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A guide to referencing styles at GSM London

What is referencing and why is it important?

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What is referencing? 


"Referencing is the process of acknowledging other people's work when you have used it in your assignment or research" (Pears and Shields, 2016, p. 1).


It's important to reference a wide range of sources as it will show your teacher the breadth and depth of your research. Referring to the work of other authors and experts helps to build and support your own argument and it allows the reader(s) to refer back to your source material. Referencing links your opinion with the evidence on which it's based and helps you achieve a better mark or grade.

At GSM London we use the Harvard style of referencing apart from Law students who use the OSCOLA style.



Why do I need to reference?

Actually there are are many good reasons to take the time to learn how to reference well:

  • To accurately demonstrate the breadth and depth of your research, establishing the
    credibility and authority of your ideas and arguments
  • To provide the link between what you write and the evidence on which it is based
  • To support your own argument by referring to the work of other authors and experts
  • To give credit to the original author/editor
  • To enable your lecturer and other readers to refer back to your original sources
    (so that they can read the source themselves and verify your claims/their validity)
  • To distinguish your views, ideas and opinions from others
  • To highlight relevant points by quoting, paraphrasing or summarising from
    the original text
  • To maintain good academic practice 

Above all else, it will help you achieve better grades and avoid losing marks unnecessarily!

When should I reference?

  • Every time you use someone else’s ideas in your work
  • In all your work, e.g. assignments, essays, reports and presentations, dissertations and other research publications


     question mark   Ask yourself: "Did I know this before I started my research?"

What should I reference?


All the sources you use for your essay or research. Any information that you either quote from directly, paraphrase or summarise must be acknowledged by referencing it.


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