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Guide: Harvard Referencing Style

Harvard referencing style is the style that is mainly used by university students with the motive of citing information sources at the time of creating a piece of writing. Author, publication date, source title and many more are some of the major components of this type of referencing style.

A Harvard reference list must:

  • Be on a separate sheet of paper, may be at the end of the document.
  • Stay organized in the alphabetical form by the author. If in case there is no author, then it is ordered by the title of the source, without the addition of the articles (a, an and the).
  • And say, for instance, if there are manifold works by one author, then these are ordered by the date of their publication.
  • Between every line of text, there must be a complete, blank line of space.

In this style of referencing, there are two types of citations included:

In-text Citations:

These type of citations are used at the time of directly quoting or paraphrasing the source. These are positioned in the body of the work and contains a separate section of the complete citation.

On the basis of the type of source, some Harvard Reference in-text citations may look like this:

“After that, I lived like a young rajah ….” (Fitzgerald, 2004).

Reference Lists:

These are the second type of citations in the Harvard referencing style and are placed at the end once all the work is done. It shows full citations for the sources that have been used in that particular assignment.

Look at this example of a full citation for a book in Harvard Reference list:

Fitzgerald, F. (2004). The Great Gatsby. New York: Scribner.

Harvard Reference List Overview:

With the help of adding referencing lists, the readers are allowed to cite the original sources by themselves. Every citation in a reference list has certain pieces of data. Following are the main components of the same.

  • Authors’ Name
  • Publishing Year
  • Title of the source
  • City in which it was published
  • Name of the publisher
  • No. of pages used

An ideal Harvard Reference List citations hold the following format:

  • Last name, First initial. (year published). Title. City: Publisher, Pages.

Citations are listed in the alphabetical order by the last name of the author.

If a single author has done multiple works, then the citations are listed according to the order of the date of publication.

How to Cite Different Types of Sources?

In-text citations are considered to be consistent across all the source types unless they have been mentioned unambiguously.

Whereas the reference list references differ a lot between the sources.

How to Cite a Book in Harvard Format?

One of the simplest and easiest formats of Harvard referencing style is the book referencing. Here is the basic format:

  • The title must be italicized
  • The initial letter of the first word must be capitalized, followed by which only proper nouns need to be capitalized.

1. Author surname(s), first word(s). (Year in which it was published). Title. Printing. City of Publication: Name of Publisher.

How to Cite a Journal Article in Harvard Format?

The simple structure that is used to cite a journal article is:

2. Names of the author. (year) ‘Title of the article’, ‘Title’, Volume, number of pages.

How to Cite an Online Journal Article in Harvard Format?

In order to cite an online journal article, the section in which the page numbers are mentioned from the print journal is exchanged with the URL or DOI. Here is the reference for an online journal:

3. Author surname(s), the first letters, (year) ‘Heading of the article’, Journal Title, Volume. Available at: URL

How to Cite a Newspaper Article?

Following structure needs to be followed while citing a newspaper

Last name, First initial. (Publishing Year). Title of the article. Newspaper, Number of pages.


Wiseman, J. (2014). Deal reached on fast track authority. The New York Times, p.A1.

How to Reference a Website?

At the time of citing a website, the following structure needs to be followed.


Last name, first initial (publishing year). Title of Page. Name of the website. Available at: URL.

Example:, (2014). M&M’s website. Available at:

How to Cite an Interview in Harvard Style?

Following is the format of citing an interview.


Name of the interviewer, first initial. And last name of the interviewee, first initial. (Interview year). Description of the interview.


Crook, C. and Lopez, J. (2013). Getting to know J. Lo.

Note: All the above-given formats are standard and the examples are just samples.