Referencing correctly is important to demonstrate how widely you have researched your subject, to show the basis of your arguments and conclusions and to avoid plagiarism.
Each school in the University requires students to use a specific style of referencing. Check the referencing style used in your school before you begin. All your citations and references should match the style you are using exactly, including any punctuation, capitalization, italics and bold, and you should use the same referencing style throughout your assignment.
The University referencing policy (PDF) sets out the referencing requirements that all taught students and their tutors are expected to follow.
Referencing is an important part of academic work for several reasons. It allows you to acknowledge other people's work when you refer to it in your assignment, and it helps your readers easily find the original sources of the ideas you have referred to or based your arguments on.
Referencing other people's work in your assignment is a way to demonstrate the breadth and depth of your research around a topic, and allows you to show your understanding of the topic by incorporating other people's arguments and evidence alongside your own analysis.
When should I reference?
You need to give the person reading your assignment enough information to find the sources you have consulted. This is done by including citations in your work and providing a list of references.
Whenever you use someone else's ideas, either by putting them into your own words (paraphrasing) or by quoting directly, you must show this within the body of your work. This is known as a citation. The format will vary depending on the referencing style you use.
At the end of your assignment you will need to provide a list of references - full details of the sources you used when writing your assignment. Your references may take the form of either a reference list or a bibliography.
A reference list is normally considered to be a list of the citations that have appeared in the body of your work. How it is arranged will depend on the referencing style you are using.
A bibliography lists all the sources that you have consulted in your research and, because it includes sources you may not have cited in your work, is usually arranged alphabetically by surname.
Many people use these terms interchangeably so, if you are unsure about which one to include, ask your tutor.
If you are new to referencing, take a look at our introduction to referencing tutorial.
- the URL, and
- the date you accessed the article,
There is no definitive version of the Harvard style. You should use the Leeds version of Harvard when referencing sources in your work, and your work should also be marked using this guidance.
- Referencing different
types of material (including examples)
- Inserting citations (references within your text)
- Harvard referencing quick crib sheet (PDF)
- Harvard reference list example (PDF)
- Harvard referencing tutorial.
There is no definitive version of the Numeric style.
You should use the Leeds version of Numeric when referencing sources in your work, and your work should also be marked using this guidance.
The MHRA style is produced by the Modern Humanities Research Association.
style guide (full guide from
- MHRA referencing bibliography quick crib sheet (PDF)
- MHRA referencing footnote quick crib sheet (PDF)
- MHRA referencing tutorial.
This style is usually used within Psychology and related disciplines. It is produced by the American Psychological Association.
The IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) style is used by the School of Electronic and Electrical Engineering.
This style is used by Law Qualifying Programmes in the School of Law. It is produced by the Oxford Law Faculty at the University of Oxford.
This style is used in the School of Medicine. The guidelines for this style are set by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors.
Referencing software (such as EndNote) not only helps you to store and manage your references, it also works with word-processing applications (like Microsoft Word) to automatically insert citations and create your bibliography or reference list for you.
- EndNote support
Help, guides, online tutorials and workshops
- Other referencing tools
Information about alternatives to EndNote.
The Leeds Harvard and Leeds Numeric referencing styles are managed and updated by the Library, and are available to use in EndNote.
You might find versions of the Leeds styles in other reference management software, online tools or apps. However, we do not endorse these tools or offer support in using them, and so we cannot vouch for the accuracy or reliability of the referencing styles they use.
Our webpages and the accompanying EndNote output style files are the only official source of guidance for the Leeds Harvard and Leeds Numeric referencing styles.
- Annotated bibliographies
- Citing quotations (Harvard style)
- Citing quotations (Numeric style)
- Essay writing
- Harvard citations
- Harvard references
- Note making
- Numeric citations
- Numeric references
- Reference lists and bibliographies
- Referencing tools
- Report writing
- Schools and their referencing styles
- Scientific writing