5 Days of Referencing: Day 5. Useful tools

There are a wide variety of tools which are freely available to help you with citing and creating reference lists, however none of them are perfect which is why it is important you know the basics of APA referencing and the key points to be aware of.

iFind, the library catalogue has a tool which recommends how books and journal articles should look in the APA style of referencing. (We looked at this briefly on Days 1 and 2.) Click on Library, then Actions then Citation to view this. You can view a short screencast of this online.

Screen clipping of a book record on iFind. Arrows show how to reveal the Citation option by clicking on the Library tab and then the Actions drop down menu.

Always check this! The tool is good but it will make some mistakes therefore you need to know which bits of information are required.

Some databases also have a tool that formats a reference for you. We have produced short screencasts of how to do this in Business Source Complete and in Proquest Business Collection. You must remember to check that the information is correct, though!

Referencing using word (Manage sources)
Word has a referencing tab on the tools bar which can be useful if you use the same laptop or computer to write assignments.  It will manage your sources and input in the correct APA style. We have produced a short guide to help you.  Take a look at the help pages available on the Microsoft Office site for more details on using this tool.

Endnote Online
Endnote is the tool Swansea University subscribes to, there is a desktop version for PCs on campus but the online version is very useful as you can use it anywhere that you have access to the internet. You can create your own library of sources and use the Cite While You Write feature in Word which will format your references in the APA style.

The library has produced an online guide to the web version of EndNote. We can provide further training if you would like to use it. Look out for 5 Days of EndNote (#su5doe) next week. You can sign up to learn about EndNote Online in short, bite-size chunks.

 

Thanks for participating in 5 days of referencing (#su5dor) remember referencing help and advice is always available from your School of Management librarians. You can book a one-one appointment (also available via skype), email us, or call in the Library to speak with one of us. 

Now that you’ve mastered APA referencing, look out for our plagiarism event running next week in the library:-

  • Take Pryderi’s Plagiarism Challenge
  • Get support and advice from your librarians
  • Book one to one session for in depth queries

Watch out for Pryderi the Plagiarising Parrot!

Photo of Pryderi the toy parrot reading a 5 Days of Referencing blog post.

Good luck with your assignments!

5 Days of Referencing: Day 4. Formatting your reference list

Over the last 3 days we have looked at the 3 main information sources you will be using in your assignment, academic books, journal articles and online documents/websites.  It is important that your reference list provides all the information in order for your lecturers to be able to find the source if they wanted.

It is also important that it is formatted in the correct APA style.  This is sometimes where students struggle and spend a long time manually formatting their lists; however there are a number of tools in word that can make this process quicker and easier for you.

Key points

  • The reference list should start on a new page.
  • Your reference list should include everything you have cited in your assignment NOTeverything you have read (which is called a bibliography).
  • It should be alphabetical according to author’s surname.
  • It should be double-spaced and indented.

If we use all the resources we have looked at over the last 3 days my reference list would look like this:

A reference list in APA format

To do this is 3 easy steps in word, firstly highlight the reference list, then select the icon A-Z from the options, then to double space and indent the list choose the small arrow next to paragraph and from the options choose Special>Hanging, then Line spacing>double.

Screenshot of the options to choose when formatting an APA reference list in MS Word

Here’s a short screencast to show you how to format the list using the tools in Word.  

Questions?

If you have any questions so far let us know using the comments section in the blog or via twitter using #su5dor. You can also email buslib@swansea.ac.uk.

 

Tomorrow we’ll look at tools that can help you reference.

5 Days of Referencing: Day 3. Websites and online documents

Remember what we said on day 1? The key to referencing well in an assignment is firstly to use good reliable sources.  Make sure you evaluate anything you find online using the WWWW method:

Who – Who wrote the information?
Why – 
Why is this information there (Is there a bias?)
When – When was it published (is it current enough?)
Where – 
Where is it from (clues in the URL ie: .com, .ac.uk)

The main sections you need to make a note of in order to reference a website or online document correctly are:

  • Author(s) (personal or corporate)
  • Year of publication
  • Title of website/document
  • Date of retrieval (only needed if the source is likely to be updated)
  • Direct working URL

Very often some bits of information will not be available with online documents; a common one is no date – in this case you can do the following:

  • No date? – use (n.d.) instead

You can find further advice on pages 19 – 21 of our APA referencing guide.

In the reference list
Here are a few examples:

Websites
You only need to include a date of retrieval in the reference list if you think a website maybe updated (it’s difficult to know this sometimes).

Tesco PLC. (n.d.). Our businesses. Retrieved March 10, 2017,                   from https://www.tescoplc.com/about-us/our-businesses/.

Online publication
This reference links to the PDF version of the code which has a published date, therefore it does not need a date of retrieval.

Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. (2016). Annual report and accounts 2015-16. Retrieved from https://www.cipd.co.uk/Images/annual-report-2015-16_tcm18-16632.pdf.

 In text citation
A good tip if you are going to use the same citation a few times in your assignment is to use acronyms.  You must explain the acronym in full the first time you use it, followed by the acronym so it is clear to your lecturer what is stands for.

First citation:
According to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD, 2016, p.18) a “healthy, happy and engaged workforce is an important indicator of our success”.

Or

According to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD, 2016) a “healthy, happy and engaged workforce is an important indicator of our success” (p.18).

Or

A “healthy, happy and engaged workforce is an important indicator of our success” (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), 2016, p.18).

Second citation
Because you explained the acronym in the first citation you can now just use the acronym on any subsequent citations in text.

Engagement in ongoing training and development is “the key to a successful career” (CIPD, 2016, p.18).

Or

The CIPD (2016) state that employees should engage in ongoing training and development as it is “the key to a successful career” (p.18).

Questions?

If you have any questions so far let us know using the comments section in the blog or via twitter using #su5dor. You can also email buslib@swansea.ac.uk.

 

Tomorrow we’ll look at formatting your reference list.

5 Days of Referencing: Day 2. Journal Articles

Journal articles are an excellent source of up-to-date and reliable information. The best students use journal articles as well as books in their research.

Do you remember which information you needed to reference a book? There are a few more bits of information in a journal article which you need to make a note of in order to reference it correctly. The main sections you need to make a note of are:

  • Author(s)
  • Year of publication
  • Title of article
  • Journal name
  • Volume
  • Issue number (only use if there is no continuous pagination, i.e.: if each issue begins with page 1)
  • Page number
  • doi (if available)

If you have the journal article in front of you, you can normally find this information on the first page.  Alternatively search for the article on iFind, the library catalogue (using the ‘Articles & more’ tab) and you will be able to see the bibliographic information you need in order to reference correctly. You can also use the Citation option in the Actions menu to see the APA reference. Remember to check the details are correct, though!

Screen clipping of the iFind citation tool for a journal article

This is how this journal article should look in the reference list
Cohen, J., Manzon, G., & Zamora, B. (2015). Contextual and individual dimensions of taxpayer decision making. Journal of Business Ethics, 126(4), 631-647.

In text citation
Sometimes you may want to cite a direct quote in your assignment, however try to use direct quotes sparingly as paraphrasing shows a better understanding of your topic.

If you decide you would like to include a direct quote it is very important you use quotation marks and you always include page numbers.  There are a number of ways you can do this:

At the start of the sentence:
According to Cohen, Manzon and Zamora (2015, p. 632) “There are a number of non-economic factors that potentially affect taxpayer decisions.”

Or

According to Cohen, Manzon and Zamora (2015) “There are a number of non-economic factors that potentially affect taxpayer decisions” (p. 632).

At the end of the sentence:
“There are a number of non-economic factors that potentially affect taxpayer decisions” (Cohen, Manzon & Zamora 2015, p. 632).

How many authors should I include?
Journal articles and indeed books can sometimes be written by many authors, APA has a specific rule for how many authors you should include in-text.

Let’s use this journal article as an example:

Fast, N., Sivanathan, N., Mayer, N., & Galinsky, A. (2012). Power and overconfident decision-making. Organizational Behaviour and Human Decision Processes, 117(2), 249-260.

If the resource you want to cite has 3-5 authors (which this example does) you must include all the authors the first time you cite, therefore it would look like this in text:

First citation
According to Fast, Sivanathan, Mayer and Galinsky (2012) overconfident leaders perform poorly.

Or

Overconfident leaders perform poorly (Fast, Sivanathan, Mayer & Galinsky, 2012).

Second citation
Because you included all 4 authors in the first citation you can now use et al. on any subsequent citations in text.

Fast et al. (2012) found that individuals with a subjective feeling of power tend to overestimate their abilities.

Or

Individuals with a subjective feeling of power tend to overestimate their abilities (Fast et al., 2012).

If the resource you want to cite has 6 or more authors you can use et al. the first time you cite.

Questions?

If you have any questions so far let us know using the comments section in the blog or via twitter using #su5dor. You can also email buslib@swansea.ac.uk.

 

Tomorrow we’ll look at websites and online documents.

5 Days of Referencing #su5dor

Do you need to improve your referencing skills? Not sure where to start? Sign up for 5 Days of Referencing! It will run from Monday 20th March to Friday 24th March. Each day, we’ll look at a different aspect of APA referencing so that by the end of the week you’ll be able to:-

  • Reference books, journal articles and websites
  • Easily format your reference list
  • Use tools to help you cite and reference

When you improve your referencing skills, you make it easier to keep a record of the material you’re reading. Paying attention to the format and presentation of your references could earn you some extra marks in your assignments. 5 Days of Referencing will help you to develop these skills by giving you information and advice in short, bitesize chunks.

To sign up, just follow our blog (enter your email address in the column on the right) or look out for the hashtag #su5dor on Twitter.

Woman sitting at a desk cheering

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