By acknowledging what other scholars have said, you become a part of the exchange of ideas within a particular debate. Attributing the source of your ideas and words has a number of important consequences:
- Your readers can see where your argument or opinion fits into the discussion.
- Your readers can see that you are writing from an informed position and providing evidence and support for your claims.
- Your readers can search for the source themselves if they wish to pursue that idea further.
This acknowledgement is done by a system of conventions called referencing.
Academic Skills Office (ASO)
The Academic Skills Office (ASO) offers a number of options for help with referencing.
Which referencing style should I use?
Different subject areas use different referencing styles. See ASO's listing here. If you are unsure about which reference style to use, check with your course coordinator or lecturer.
How do I apply the reference styles to my assignments?
This listing of reference styles provides links to PDF guidelines with instructions and examples.
There are also online tutorials to assist you with using reference styles.