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Citing Information: Citation Styles

Basic Understanding

A citation refers to the information of a publication which may be a book, a journal article, a newspaper article, a DVD, or a website etc.

A citation provides the bibliographic information of a publication necessary for identification and retrieval, for example:

  • Name of author
  • Publication year
  • Book title
  • Place of publication
  • Name of publisher

There are a number of different styles or formats for writing citations. Each citation style includes the same elements of a citation, but may organize them in a different way. A reference list contains citations arranged in alphabetical order by author's family name.

Common Styles

Some commonly used citation styles are:

  • Harvard System of Referencing

Which style you should use depends upon the subject discipline you are working in. Please consult your instructor for details of the citation style you should use.

* As a general rule, students of EdUHK may use the APA style for writing papers or bibliographies.

You may find the bibliographic management tool RefWorks at the Library web site useful for generating citations and bibliographies in different citation styles.

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