The Ultimate Harvard Referencing Thesis Checklist – Ensure Flawless Citations

Referencing is vital to ensure the reliability of any academic writing. If you intend to write your thesis this year, you must have been considering following the Harvard referencing thesis to ensure flawless citation. It is the most popular referencing style in all UK universities.

Your degree is incomplete without the submission of your thesis. For this purpose, a set of protocols is required, such as analysis, estimation, experimentation and, most importantly, writing it on a final paper to present your findings to the world.

According to Statista, the number of graduates in medical universities in the UK increased by 305 compared to last year. Even the total number increased by 9,140, highlighting the increased number of enrollments for graduate programs.

What does it mean? More students turn to writing a thesis as a part of their degree compared to the previous years. So, it is dire to write it effectively to ensure good grades.

In the same way, the sources you consult for citation are important. This is why Harvard styling is the most reliable option for students in UK universities. This guide will provide a checklist for Harvard referencing style so that you don’t run out of track during its implementation.

However, suppose you think you don’t have the expertise to write a thesis and are especially stuck at providing its citation. In that case, you should get thesis writing help instead of producing a document with countless glitches.

Do You Need Citations for a Thesis?

Perhaps it’s one of the most rising concerns among students writing their thesis this year. Students mostly overlook the importance of Harvard referencing thesis citations in thesis writing. In fact, during data collection, they may consult various primary and secondary resources but don’t consider all these worth noting down for later citation.

According to UNSW Sydney, citation is not only meant to avoid plagiarism, but it plays many other roles, such as: 

  • It allows you to acknowledge the contribution of research in your work.
  • It gives credit to the authors from whom you borrowed ideas for the implementation.
  • It provides evidence to support your claim
  • It provides a pathway for other researchers to be followed for their experimental activities.

How Do You Cite a Paraphrase?

Paraphrasing is writing someone else’s words or work in your writing style. It makes the context more comprehensive. Sometimes, using complex terminology and interwoven complex ideas does not let the reader understand it in simple words. This is where paraphrasing comes into play.

However, it must accompany the proper Harvard referencing thesis citation. There must be an in-text citation beside the paraphrased paragraph. Also, you need to provide a reference list at the end to provide the proper source of information.

The Leabharlann UCD Library provides an example of a text copied and paraphrased from a Google story. Now, the passage will be considered plagiarised if,

  • You do not cite the author as a source of your information
  • If the paraphrased text vocabulary and wording are too close to the original text
  • Only a few words and sentences have changed

On the other hand, the paraphrasing is acceptable if,

  • You properly referred to the author
  • You have written it in your own words
  • You give credit for the ideas in the passage

What Is Harvard Referencing Thesis?

Harvard referencing thesis writing is also known as the Author-Date style. It is a method of referencing your sources in academic writing. It emphasises the name of the authors as a piece of information along with its publication date.

The Harvard University library developed the system, and later, it was popularised to be used as a standard means for referencing in UK universities. It ensures consistency in referencing, which helps the reader maintain the flow while comprehending your ideas. Using the Harvard citation system means you are well aware of the academic conventions and use them properly in academic documents.

Compare the Harvard referencing thesis to other citation versions, there is no single referencing style when following the Harvard referencing style thesis system. Various versions have variations in punctuation, abbreviations, CAPITALISATION and use of italics. A brilliant student keen to learn and practice it can do independently. But if you think of having perfection in your work, get help from a Harvard referencing thesis writer.

Harvard Referencing Thesis Checklist

To cite your thesis sources according to Harvard thesis referencing, consider two crucial elements of this citation system.

1. In-Text Citation

The in-text citation appears in the body of your work containing the author’s surname and the year of its publication. According to Southern Cross University, for in-text citations in the Harvard citation system,

  • There is no specific protocol for font type and size. However, following the standard size of 12 font and typing in New Times format is recommended.
  • The author’s last name and year of publication are needed
  • The in-text citation can be within the sentence or at the end of it.
  • According to the Harvard referencing thesis, you must mention the page number for a direct quote.
  • Place a colon after years and separate multiple pages with a dash, i.e. (Hebrew 1998: 255-278)
  • You can use the press name if the work has not been published.
  • You can use the authors’ initials if there are more than two authors with similar surnames. For example, L Nguyen (2005) and D Nguyen (2007).
  • If the same author does two or more works, you can arrange them chronologically. Start it with the earliest date. For example, Watson (1988, 1990, 1998)
  • If the publication date is not mentioned, you can only write the year of publication

Try to understand the insights and implement them in your thesis writing. However, a Harvard referencing dissertation writing service is required if you consider getting an expertly written document.

Formats for In-Text Citation

The in-text citation formatting can be done in two ways. One is an information-focused format, where the reference is usually placed at the end of the sentence. For instance, consider Harvard referencing thesis examples,

The astonishing efforts of the men must be appreciated (Johns 2005), and the manager must be polite with his coworkers (Smith 2009).

The other one is the author-focused format in which the author’s name is placed in the sentence as part of the sentence. There is no need to place additional parenthesis and commas to make it separate. For example, In the long run, Adam (2005) argued that the circumstance could be much better if timely precautions had been followed up.

2. End Text Citation

The end text citation in the Harvard referencing thesis is meant to compile a list of all the references you placed in the text. It must be followed up with the proper referencing style and format.

Otherwise, it can cause confusion for the reader to know which one is the author’s name and which one is the publisher’s or journal’s name. Such citations follow a Who, When, What, and Where pattern.

According to Tafesa, the visual representation of how to use this pattern can be given as,

For instance, if you find in-text references in the below-mentioned format, you must be able to recognise its key elements.

Ha, T 2009, The Australian green consumer guide: How to choose a product for a healthier planet and playing a role in future betterment, Harvard University Press, United Kingdom.

In the above example, Tony Ha addresses “Who”, 2009 addresses “When” How to choose a product for a healthier planet and play a role in future betterment addresses “What” and Harvard University Press, United Kingdom addresses “Where”.

It must be noted that you can buy Harvard referencing thesis online if you fear not doing it with perfection. There are expert writers to assist you in every possible way.

Formats for End Text Citation

To format your end-text citation, consider the below-mentioned key highlights:

  • The initials follow the surnames
  • No spacing and full stops are placed between people’s names. For example, Adam Smith John can be written as John AS.
  • You must include all the author’s names for end text citation in Harvard referencing thesis
  • The names of the books are italicised
  • The names of newspapers are also in italics but only use capitals
  • The titles of chapters and articles are not to be italicised but enclosed in a quotation mark. For example, ‘The emergence of new decade’.
  • Separate each citation element with a comma and place a full stop at the end of the sentence.

How to Cite a Direct Quote by Following the Harvard Referencing Thesis Style?

The quotations must be used sparingly and carefully selected to be placed in the in-text citation. For this purpose, you write a word-to-word exact phrase of the author’s saying. It also highlights the author’s exact language and tone to tell the reader the intensity of the matter.

For instance, you must include the page number when citing a direct quote in the text. However, there are certain regulations when citing these quotations.

Short Quotations Citation

According to the Harvard referencing thesis, the short quotation category includes a quotation that is less than 30 words.

  • You must include it in your text without disturbing the flow of the paragraph and context. In other words, it must be relevant
  • It must accompany a single quotation mark
  • Place a full stop after a citation
  • However, for the Harvard referencing thesis, the font size should be similar to the other text

For example, According to Adam (2017, p. 25), ‘the role of technology in making this world a global village can’t be overlooked.’

Long Quotations Citation

A quotation of more than 30 words is considered a long tail in accordance with the Harvard referencing thesis. For its in-text citation,

  • You must start it on the new line
  • Present it in your own words
  • Keep it in single-line spacing
  • Place one blank line to make the quote visible beside the text.
  • The lead-in statement is the line after which you will place the blank line. You can separate the lead in the statement by placing a colon and a blank line.

For example,

The circumstances exist in parallel to the Ireland:

As farming and fishing income declined, tourism has taken a new turn. Considering the scenario, the decline of nature and people is not coincidental. Achill is a popular spot for water-based activities. (Fogarty Will, 2018, p. 222).

Green tourism is a recent new phenomenon in Ireland. It provides a sustainable way of living while taking environmentally friendly approaches.

  • Don’t use any quotation marks for long quotations.
  • If you want to omit some words from long sentences, you can use ellipsis…
  • Ensure the quotation retains its original meaning after writing it in your own words for the Harvard referencing thesis.

APA Or MLA vs Harvard Referencing

If you are writing any academic paper, such as a dissertation, thesis, assignment, coursework, etc., you must know the referencing system. Every university has different criteria and guidelines for referencing the sources. MLA (Modern Language Association) and APA (American Psychological Association) are two of the most popular means of referring to your sources in academic papers.

However, in UK universities, Harvard referencing thesis is the most popular and reliable means of referencing. So, let’s know how these traditional means differ from Harvard’s referencing style.


One of the major differences arises from its domain. As the name indicates, APA usually refers to arts and humanitarian domains. The use of MLA is mostly popular for social sciences. However, the Harvard referencing thesis is acceptable in universities for referencing natural and social sciences subjects.

In Text Citation

The in-text citations of these three references are different from each other. For instance, the referencing of APA,

  • If there is a single author, the year of publication must be followed by the author’s last name.
  • For two authors’ citations, place “and” between two names and write the year of publication.
  • However, if the number is three or more, only use the first author’s name and place, et al., afterwards with a year of publication.

In the same way, if using the MLA system for referencing,

  • If there are multiple authors, the last name of the author is placed in parentheses
  • If there are three or more three authors, the author’s last name is written, and continuity is shown by placing et al.

Finally, for in-text referencing, according to the Harvard referencing thesis system,

  • When there is a reference to 2, 3 or more authors, the authors’ names are placed in the same manner as in the reference. 
  • The use of the word “and” for citing three authors
  • If there are more than three authors, like APA, use et al.


In the APA referencing system, only the first letter of the paper name, title, book name, etc., is capitalised. Also, it must be italicised. On the contrary, the first letter of all the major words of the title must be capitalised. However, the Harvard referencing style is similar to the APA format.


One of the most important concerns of the students is, “How do you Harvard reference a thesis?” To help, the above-mentioned Harvard referencing thesis guide will address the concerns of students writing their final year thesis. The whole process of writing your thesis can be as sensitive to making a flaw as referencing is.

A single mistake in placing a colon, comma, capitalisation, blank line, etc., can change the whole format, and you may face rejection for not following the standards referencing system.

However, it does not negate the importance of being keen to write your thesis. It must also accompany proper structuring, formatting, styling, etc. A well-written thesis must be a true model of perfection in both writing and referencing. Furthermore, if you can’t implement the instructions, especially when the deadline is approaching, get thesis writing help to avoid this hustle.

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