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APA Quick Referencing: Introduction

What is referencing?

Referencing is a method of acknowledging sources of information and ideas you have used in your written work.

While there are many different styles used worldwide, the APA (American Psychological Association) 7th edition is the style of referencing used at North Metropolitan TAFE.

It is composed of two parts: in-text and end-text referencing. The end-text citations are placed in the Reference List at the end of the assignment. This allows the reader to follow the brief citation in-text to the full set of details in the Reference List.

Why do you reference?

   To acknowledge the source of information and ideas of others    

   To show the breadth of your research

   To allow the reader (your lecturer) to be able to find and verify the information

What if you don't reference?

   Plagiarism is the term used when someone copies another person's ideas or opinions as their own and does not acknowledge the original source of information.                           
  Plagiarism, whether deliberate or accidental is a form of cheating and is not acceptable. Remember, if you plagiarise in your assignment you may fail. 

When do you have to reference?

If you:

      quote (use someone else's exact words)            
paraphrase (convert someone else's ideas to your own words)
summarise (use a brief account of someone else's ideas)
copy (use statistics, figures, tables, images)

When do you NOT need to give references?

You do not need to cite when:

  • You are describing your own experiences or observations
  • You are using general knowledge or common knowledge. These are facts that are well known within the community in which they are used.

            For example: smoking causes lung cancer.



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Remember - a reference is needed when you refer to someone else's work. 

A Reference List is an alphabetical listing of the information sources you have used.          

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