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  4. What if I cannot find the reference type I need in the OU Harvard guide to citing references?

What if I cannot find the reference type I need in the OU Harvard guide to citing references?

Student studying in the dark looking a little distressed

You may find the referencing style you are using does not include a resource type that exactly matches the item you wish to reference. The key to referencing is to apply the correct style and to be consistent. Identifying as much information as possible to construct your reference and placing these elements in the right order and relevant format will help others to locate the source you used. Thinking about your reference:

  • Who produced the source? If this information is not available then list the item by its title
  • What year was the source produced or updated etc.? If you cannot find a date then note ‘n.d.’
  • What is the title, e.g. the book chapter title, journal article title?
  • Note the type of source, e.g. [Online]
  • Is the source part of a series, such as a journal or a particular edition?
  • Is the source part of a larger publication, such as a newspaper and what is the title?
  • Is the source published and, if so, where is the place of publication and who published/produced the work?
  • If you are using a web source then note the URL
  • If you accessed a source online, what date did you access it?
  • Note the format of your source, e.g. eBook, Audio CD

Once you have all the relevant details for your source you can use similar examples from the OU Harvard Guide to help you construct your reference. You might find two examples that would suit your reference if they were merged. Based on these examples, construct your reference by substituting or adding in the details about your source. This will help you decide which order the elements of the reference should appear in. Apply a method as close as possible to the OU Harvard Guide so your style is consistent. 

This same method can be applied to any referencing style, including Cite Them Right Harvard.