Waste No Time. Get Straight to Cite Using Harvard Citation Generator

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Free Harvard Style Citation Guide

Harvard referencing system is one of the most common citation styles used by many educational establishments. Colleges or universities, it doesn’t matter because each professor will require correct referencing of academic sources.  

Harvard citation style ensures clarity and preciseness of all presented information, and the system itself is quite easy for students to emulate, especially if they have templates or use a Harvard citation generator. The thing about it, though, is that it often varies depending on university or college type. For this reason, we’ve made sure to develop the most common system of Harvard referencing.

Citing sources is essential in all academic essays because it ensures that your works have no plagiarism. If you’re a student, you must already be aware of how dangerous plagiarism is. Any information that an ordinary audience wouldn’t know must be backed up by credible works, and their authors must be given proper credit. If you want to avoid accusations of plagiarism, which might result in serious disciplinary actions, learning Harvard specifics is obligatory.

Brief History of the Harvard Reference Style

Students using Harvard style citations rarely know about its background. Why is it important? The answer is simple: while you can always use the help of a Harvard citation generator, absolute success will be achieved only as citing everything becomes second nature to you. It will make the citing process faster. Unfortunately, all intricacies can appear rather tedious and most importantly, indistinguishable from other styles like APA or MLA. That’s why you have to start seeing Harvard as an individual referencing system with its specific history.

Unlike other styles, Harvard referencing was created not by academic associations but by an independent person, a zoologist Edward Mark. As a scientist, he published a study and used a special author-year citation, and it became popular in academic circles. It’s also the reason why it varies among universities, particularly regarding punctuation, since as time went by, many people started to adapt it to themselves. Because of this, different variations of Harvard exist.  

This referencing system is used in a variety of subjects due to its convenience, but most commonly, it’s required in social sciences as well as humanities. Business disciplines also use it often, and if you’re a student in one of these areas, you’re likely to become familiar with Harvard very soon.

Formatting Harvard In-text Citations Accurately

Each source must be cited within text properly. Whether you’re using excerpts, paraphrases, or direct quotes, they all must be cited. Harvard reference generator can be of great help here, but as we said, knowing the basics by heart is also important.

One Author and Pages

Citations can be direct and indirect. Direct citations entail mentioning the author right in text itself. Indirect ones mean that you provide information from source and put the author’s name into parenthesis.

If you’re referring to text in general, all you need is author and date. In case of direct citation, format your reference like this.

According to Kostins (2009), it is crucial to research rare sea species.

When using indirect citations, follow this example.

Some studies are dedicated to the research of endangered sea species (Kostins, 2009).

When you’re referring to specific moments from a source or use direct quotes, you’re going to need page numbers. This is how they should be formatted.

These creatures are encountered only in the Black Sea (Kostins, 2009, p.12).

if you’re mentioning/quoting moments from several pages, use ‘pp.’ instead of ‘p.’ and list them through the hyphen.   

No Date

As it was already stated, dates are crucial. Still, you might find a source where no date is present. You can’t rely on the Harvard referencing tools in such cases because it is very strict about using dates no matter what.

Check the content and its medium to find an approximate date. For example, there is no date visible in your article, but there is a year mentioned for those pieces published right before and after it. Logically, yours was created in the same year. If you’re not certain, mention it like this:

(2010?) or (ca. 2010).

If things are trickier than that, try to establish a decade of publication. For example, use (199-) if you’re sure about your found date or put (199?) if you’re not entirely confident. However, if the date cannot be identified, you can also use n.d. for “not dated”.    

Two-Three Authors

When source has several authors, use Harvard citation generator tool or remember these rules. Mention them with the help of ‘and’ both in text and in parenthesis. Everything else remains the same as in instance with one author.  

That is why “Ketamine is used for such cases” (Wilkins and Brown, 2018, pp.23-25).

Do the same for three authors:

(Brown, Kevins and Johnes, 2019).

More Than Three Authors

For four or more authors in Harvard citations, you’ll have to use ‘et al.’ Pay attention to punctuation.

Lokons, et al. (2013) reveal that 37% of people “die under similar circumstances” (p.54).

No Known Author

Unlike in other styles, Harvard referencing generator requires the usage of source’s creator. If you can’t find him/her, mention them as ‘Anonymous’ or ‘Anon.’ in short. Other rules remain the same.

That is why some studies investigate this matter thoroughly (Anon., 2009).

Multiple Sources in One Citation

Combining several sources in one citation is a task you have to do manually as the Harvard reference generator can’t know what authors combinations you’re using. It’s quite easy, just follow this example.

It was researched by Bolders (2011) and Kavs (2018) both.

In parenthesis, separate chosen writing professionals with a semicolon:

(Bolders, 2011; Kavs, 2018).

Authors with the Same Last Name

Harvard citation generator also won’t assist you in the instance if there are authors who share one last name in your work. To avoid confusion, give their first names’ initials and use dates of works to distinguish them.

It’ll look like this:

J. Orks (2005) and B. Orks (2008).

Several Works by One Author

Often, you have to use several sources authored by one person. If they were created in different years, this will be the point of distinction: just don’t forget to keep mentioning the year every time after the author’s name.

When author published several works in one year, differentiate them through lowercase letters alphabetically. For example:

(Fergin, 2018a; 2018b).


Treat organizations like you would authors, just use their names instead of actual people’s last names.

For instance:

(WHO, 2015).

Electronic Sources

These sources don’t differ from physically published ones much, they simply lack pages. So, you’ll just need authors’ last names and date.

Harvard Reference List Formatting

Bibliography is as important as in-text citations because it helps your readers see how credible your sources are and where/how they can be found. You have to list them alphabetically based on an author’s last name. When locating several publications by one author, place them according to the earliest date.

Harvard citation format example


For journal articles, you’re going to need volume and issue numbers. Remember that journals’ and magazines’ titles must be in italics while titles of articles shouldn’t be formatted. For academic journals, this  general structure is needed.

Author, A. A., Year of publication. Title of Article. Name of Journal, issue(volume), page numbers.

See below for clearer articles referencing structure understanding.

Meltansit, F., 2013. Fiction Does Not Affect Reality. Life Studies, 32(2), pp.32-65.  

For online newspapers’ articles, the following structure is needed:

Author, A. A., Year of publication. Title of Article. Name of Magazine, [medium] Day Month. Available at: <link>[Accessed Day Month Year].
Javris, L. K., 2019. Another Triumph. New York Times, [online] 2 July. Available at: <http://www.newyorktimes.com/news/1/222>[Accessed 8 April 2019].

Electronic Websites

There are many kinds of useful websites. To cite them, just use all available info. Capitalize the document’s title (unless it’s an article).

Author, A. A., Year of publication. Title of Document. [medium] Name of Organization/Publisher. Available at: <link>[Accessed Day Month Year].
Loms Group Ltd., 2017. Use of Ethical Practices. [online] Loms Group Ltd. Available at: <http://www.loms.com/111> [Accessed 8 April 2019].

Chapter From a Book

If you’re interested only in one chapter of some book, you should cite it separately instead of referencing the entire source. Just add “Ch. 4” (or a number you need) at the very end. If this book has editors, mention them but start reference from name of the author whose chapter/story you’ve used. Mention the date of a specific story and of book itself. It’ll look like this:

Author, A. A., Year of publication. Chapter’s title. In: E. Editor, ed. Year of publication. Book’s Title. Location: Publisher. Ch. number.
Jones, J., 2015. Overcoming Trauma. In: L. Stuart, ed. 2018. Learning How to Deal with Disorders. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Ch.4


In our modern time, e-books are increasingly popular. When using one, mention what you normally would about published professionals but add a link through which it was accessed.

Author, A. A., Year of publication. Book’s Title. [e-book] Location: Publisher. Available through: Database website <link> [Accessed Day Month Year].
Rolins, B., 2012. Things That Matter. [e-book] Philadelphia, PA: Wol Press. Available through: PA Wol University Library website <https://111.22> [Accessed 8 April 2019].

Conference Papers

Be very attentive when citing academic conference papers. Mention all data provided below:

Author, A. A., Year of publication. Paper’s Title. In: Name of Organization, conference’s name. Location, Date Month Year. Location of where conference’s transcript was published: Publisher.
White, M. L., 2018. Determining benefits of a new Breakthrough Plan. In: UNDESA (United Nations Department of Global Communications), 3rd International forum on technological advancements. San Francisco, US, 13-15 June 2010. New York: United Nations.

Books with One Author

General Harvard referencing for books will look like this.

Author, A. A., Year of publication. Book’s Title. Location: Publisher.

Don’t forget that books’ titles must be capitalized and see specific examples for more clarity.  

Broks, L. K., 2010.  Sea Explorations. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.    

For editions other than first, place number of the edition after title.

Broks, L. K., 2010.  Sea Explorations. 3rd ed. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.    

Books with Many Authors

For many authors, use the Harvard referencing generator to avoid mistakes. If you’re doing it manually, remember that you must list all authors in the order they’re mentioned in the source itself. Put ‘and’ before the final name.

Author, A. A. and Author, B. B., Year of publication. Book’s Title. Location: Publisher.

Check a more specific example below.

Joris, K., Morgan, S. and Babers, U. K., 2016. Conducting Research of Level 2. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


For patents, check this template.

Inventor, I. I., Assignee. Year of Patent. Patent’s title. Location. Patent number.
Wovson, R., Unique Glasses Limited. 2014. New ultra-violet method of glass manufacturing. US. Pat. 9,452,479.

Lecture Notes

When using lecture notes provided by the professor, Harvard referencing generator won’t be able to help. If you’re providing a paper for an audience who’s not your professor, include them in Appendix.  

Lecturer, L. L., Year of Publication. Notes’ title, module number-title. Location, status. (See appendix A)
Brown, B. L., 2011. Sea species exploration, SF32653L Marine Studies. University of Delaware, unpublished. (See appendix X)

Benefits of EduBirdie’s Harvard Citation Generator

EduBirdie’s Harvard generator is always ready to help you format references properly. Firstly, it’s completely free and doesn’t require registration. It works online, so just go to our site and choose format you need.

Also, it’s entirely accurate. Of course, you should check your uni’s template because like we said, Harvard can differ, but our system corresponds to most common requirements. We value your trust and we make constant useful updates.

FAQs for Harvard Citation Generator

What If My Harvard Template Differs From EduBirdie’s Harvard Citation Generator?

In such case, you can either try to follow your professor’s template or send it to us and we’ll format everything for you. Our writers are professionals in formatting and they’ll do everything flawlessly. 

How Can I Make My Harvard Formatting Perfect?

To eliminate all chances of failure, order paper formatting from EduBirdie.  You’ll save time and receive the best results.

Can I Re-Format My MLA/APA/Chicago Paper to Harvard?

Sure, it’s not a problem! Just use this guide to make changes you need and download some online samples.  Also, if you’ve formatted your paper in other citation style and now need Harvard quickly, we’ll gladly re-do it for you.

How Should Titles Be Formatted?

In Harvard, you must put titles of books, movies, journals, and magazines in italics. Others are put either into quotation marks or not formatted at all.

What If I Need to Cite Source That Harvard Manual Doesn’t Have?

It’s possible because mentioning all types of sources that you might require isn’t real. Either cite all info about the source you can find by following the aforementioned examples or ask us to help. We can format your bibliography, in-text citations, or find sources and write your paper from scratch.  So contact us now if you need help!