Referencing and Citation

Referencing and Citation

Referencing is a way of acknowledging every source used in research or in the completion of an assignment. The details you provide for a source are normally its author, title, date, and place of publication and the name of its publisher. You may have to provide additional details, depending on what form the source takes, such as a volume number or a web link. These individual references are then collected into what’s called a bibliography.

Citing is a way of briefly referencing a source within the text of your assignment, linking it to the more detailed reference in the bibliography. This is usually done when you paraphrase someone else’s ideas or directly quote them. Information, facts, and dates that are considered common knowledge are not required to be referenced e.g. Dublin is the capital city of Ireland.

NCAD uses the Harvard Referencing Style. All statements, opinions, conclusions, etc. taken from another writer's work must be cited, whether the work is directly quoted, paraphrased or summarised. It is necessary to acknowledge sources so that it is clear when you are making use of another author's material. In the Harvard System, cited publications are referred to in the text by giving the author's surname and the year of publication and are listed in a bibliography at the end of the text.


Reference and Citation Guide

For further help with reference and citation, see the EML's help guide which includes examples of how to cite different types of sources, and links to further help on Harvard referencing and citation.



Zotero is a free, easy-to-use tool to help you collect, organize, cite, and share your research sources. It lives right where you do your work— in the web browser itself.

Zotero can accessed by downloading the Windows Zotero application and the connector for the browser going forward. Plugins for Microsoft Word and LibreOffice are also included. It works best in the Firefox browser.


Guides for Essay Presentation

A guide for essay presentation and referencing is available here for Year 1 & Electives. 

Year 3: Critical Cultures Research Project Handbook is available here for final year undergraduate students

These guide presents guidelines on layout and  examples of how to cite and reference sources from the School of Visual Culture.