There are two places in your assignments where you will need to acknowledge when you have used someone else’s ideas, theories etc to support your research.
In the body of your work – called in-text referencing or citing.
This is when you refer to known theories and ideas to support your own work in the body of your assignment. This might be through a direct quotation (marked out the use of "....") or by paraphrasing the original author's words.
At the end of your work in your Reference List or Bibliography.
This is where you link the in-text references or citations included in the body of your assignment to a list of all the resources you have used at the end.
Reference List or Bibliography?
Understanding the difference between a Reference List and a Bibliography can be tricky as the terms can be used incorrectly.
- A Reference List is a list of all the sources you have cited in your work
- A Bibliography is a list of the sources you have read to help you write your assignment but not cited.
In most cases you will only need to create a Reference List, but remember to check with your tutor if you are not sure what is expected.
Many people use these terms Reference List and Bibliography interchangeably so, if you are unsure about whether you need to include a Bibliography as well as a Reference List, ask your tutor.
Reference List format
Your reference list appears at the end of your assignment and should always be in alphabetical order by author/editor/corporate author, no matter what the format of the source is (book, e-book, journal, website etc.).
A bibliography would be presented in the same way as your reference list and would be a separate list following your reference list.