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Harvard Referencing Style: In-Text Citation

Harvard Referencing Style: In-Text Citation

The Harvard citation style does not have source document listing out how the various types of sources are to be cited in the Reference List. This guide is based on a wide range of Harvard guides available online.

To view how sources are cited in Harvard style, you may click on the tabs to know more.

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Harvard Citation Style guides from the following institutions:

  1. Anglia Ruskin University Library
  2. Monash University Library
  3. Sunway College Johor Bahru Library & Learning Commons 2014, Guide to Harvard referencing, Johor Bahru.
  4. University of Western Australia Information Services

In-text Citations

One author if the author's name appears in the sentence itself, write the publication year of your source in the parenthetical citation.

David (2007) argues that.....

If the author's name does not appear in the sentence itself, state the author's surname (i.e. last name) and year of publication. 

.....was argued (David 2007)

To differentiate the different works, use the lower case letters (a, b, c) with the year of publication with the order of the listing based on the letter-by-letter alphabetical order of the title of the work. 

Tied up with the long-term prospects of the economy (Sachs 2013a) is the role of universities in sustainable development (Sachs 2013b).....


For a source with 2 or 3 authors, state the authors surname (i.e. last names) in the text or in the parenthetical citation. 

Counseling a person with AS or autism presents a unique challenge for the mental health care provider (Woods, Mahdavi & Ryan 2013).


Woods, Mahdavi and Ryan (2013) found that counseling a person with AS or autism presented a challenge for the mental health provider. 

If a source has 4 or more authors, provide the first author's surname (i.e. last name) followed by "et al". However, in the reference list, all authors' names must be listed. 

This theory was proven (Gilbert et al. 2009).


Gilbert et al. (2009) proved.....

This general rule in-text citation or in the reference list is to start with the author's surname or family name. In Western names, the surname is the last name element. However, Chinese names, the surname is the first element. In some other Asian names, there are no surname elements. As such, use the first name element. 

Chinese Name In-text Citation List of reference
Wee Ka Siong (The first name is the surname) (Wee 2014) Wee, KS
Alvin Yau Kok Lim (Surname interpose between Christian name and other personal name element) (Yau 2014) Yau, AKL
Malay name without surname
Shahnon Ahmad (Shahnon 2014) Shahnon,  A
Ungku A. Aziz Ungku Abdul Hamid (Ungku A. Aziz 2014) Ungku A. Aziz, UAH
Tan Sri Datuk Hamzah Sendut (Hamzah 1989) Hamzah, S

Malaysia Sikh name where Kaur or Singh is not used as surname

Mukhtiar Kaur (Mukhtiar 2014) Mukhtiar, K
Indian names with surname which is usually the last name
Romesh Chunder Dutt (Dutt  1906) Dutt, RC
Lal Bahadur Shastri (Shastri 1962) Shastri, LB
Kannad, Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu names without surname
C. Sankaran Nair (Sankaran Nair 1922) Sankaran Nair, C
S. R. Ranganathan (Ranganathan 1966) Ranganathan, SR

Use full title for the first citation. Abbreviate title for second or subsequent citations.

('Where angels no longer fear to tread' 2008).


'Where angels no longer fear to tread' (2008).....

Include the page number after the publication year. 

As Spector (2013, p. 51) points our, 'effective organizational change requires an alteration in patterns of employee behaviour'.


A study showed that 'effective organizational change requires an alteration in patterns of employee behaviour' (Spector 2013, p. 51).

Document No. WL/024

Issue 2

7 May 2018

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