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Leeds Numeric introduction

Leeds Numeric basics

The University uses a variation of the Numeric referencing style called Leeds Numeric.

To reference in Leeds Numeric:

  • Insert an in-text citation and a corresponding reference in a list at the end of your work for every source you quote, paraphrase, summarise or refer to.
  • Every citation should be labelled within your text by using a number in brackets (1). The first item you cite is allocated number 1, the second item is allocated number 2, and so on throughout your piece of work. The reference should provide the full details of the item.
  • Include page numbers in your citation if you quote directly from the text, paraphrase specific ideas or explanations, or use an image, diagram, table etc from a source.

You should insert the citation number directly after a source is referred to in your text, even if this is in the middle of a sentence. It is acceptable to place a citation number at the end of a paragraph, if the entire paragraph is referring to the same source.

If your school has asked you to reference using the Leeds version of Numeric, then your tutors should also follow this guidance when marking.


  • Aitchison (1) suggests that language change is inevitable, but not a bad thing.
  • One leading expert suggests that language change is inevitable, but is not a bad thing (1)

How to incorporate citations into your work

It is good practice to vary the way you incorporate in-text citations; this will help enhance the flow and style of your academic writing.

Citations might appear at the start, middle or end of your sentences.

You can also refer to multiple sources at once; this can not only help make your writing more succinct but also improve the synthesis of sources, research or ideas within your assignments.


  • Smith (1) identified a statistical correlation between...
  • A number of recent studies reveal ....(1, 3-6, 9)
  • Socio-economic factors such as class and education as well as "hereditary determinants" (1, p.267), can have a detrimental effect on an individual's health.
  • A quarter of students would like to see employability embedded as part of their degree course (1, p.15).
  • In contrast, Grayson (1) identified the main determinant as...
  • Marks et al. (1) identified...

Multiple citations to the same source

Once a source has been allocated a number, this number is used again if you refer to the same source at a later point in your work.

According to the Environment Agency (1), road transport accounts for 25% of the UK's total carbon dioxide emissions, which are seen as a contributing factor to climate change. A recent Mintel report (2) highlighted climate change as a high priority for the government, as well as the general public. With road transport set to grow by 33% over the next 20 years (1), it is important for governments, businesses and individuals to act now to reduce the impact that transport is having on the global environment.

The number (1) appears more than once as both statistics came from the same Environment agency report.

Further help

For more information, take a look at our handy guides, activities and resources: