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Harvard UON Referencing Style:  In-text citations

UON Library guide to the Australian Harvard Style based on the online Style Manual: the standard for Australian Government writing and editing 2020.

In-text Citations - General Rules

See the tabs above for detailed instructions and examples 


In-text citation

  • The elements of an in-text citation include the author surname, the year of publication, e.g. (Smith 2022).
  • When you include a direct quote in the text, add the page number after the citation e.g. (Smith 2022:34).
  • In-text citations can be entered in two ways depending on the focus of your writing: 
    • 'Information prominent': the author's name is within the parentheses, e.g. (Smith and Jones 2021)

    • 'Author prominent' (the author's name is part of the sentence, only the year is in the parentheses): e.g. Smith and Jones (2021)

  • Don’t separate the name and date with a comma.
  • An in-text citation can appear anywhere in a sentence, provided that it follows the paraphrasing of the source or a direct quote.


  • Use shortened forms or abbreviations of corporate author in in-text citations, e.g. (ABC 2022)
  • A maximum of 2 authors are cited in-text.
  • Use the word ‘and’ between two authors outside and inside parentheses. The ampersand (‘&’) is not used in this edition anymore.
  • For a work by 3 or more authors, use the first author’s surname plus the Latin term ‘et al.’ (meaning ‘and others’). 
  • When no author is available for a post or article, use the name of the blog, website, newspaper, or magazine. 
  • Editors and translators are formatted in the same way as for authors in in-text citations. Terms such as editor, translator or pseudonym, abbreviated in a reference list, are omitted from an in-text citation.


  • When no date is available, use n.d. (no date) in the place of the year, e.g. (White and Jones n.d.).

Page number

  • Include page numbers in the in-text citation only when the work has page numbers and you’re including a direct quotation.
  • Use a colon between the date and page numbers, e.g. (Smith and Jones 2019:16-17).
  • Page numbers are not required when paraphrasing unless required by your lecturer.

Shortened forms (Abbreviations)

Examples of In-text citations with 1, 2, 3 or more authors


Every time you quote, paraphrase, or use an idea from another source you must include an in-text citation to that source. A maximum of 2 authors are cited in-text.

See the general rules for in-text citations for more details:


  • Format for 1 author: (Author's Surname Year of Publication), e.g. (Smith 2022), or Smith (2022) ...

Australian education providers will need to address a number of challenges to ensure standards of special education are fully supporting students with special needs and their families (Smith 2022).

  • Format for 2 authors : (1st Author's Surname and 2nd Author's Surname Year of Publication, e.g. (Smith and Jones 2022), or Smith and Jones (2022) ... technologies need to be evaluated before large scale investment is made by organisations (Smith and Jones 2022).

  • Format for 3 or more authors: (1st Author's Surname et al. Year of Publication)

For a work by three or more authors, use the first author’s surname plus the Latin term ‘et al.’ (meaning ‘and others’).

Don’t use italics for ‘et al.’, e.g. Smith et al. (2022) ... or ... (Smith et al. 2022)

In-text citations where the author is unknown (no author)


  • If a blog post or news article doesn’t list an author, use the name of the blog, newspaper or magazine, eg ( ABC 2022), or (Newcastle Herald 2022).
  • If a media release doesn’t list an author, use the name of the Organisation Name or Abbreviation, eg (NSW Government 2022).
  • If none of these options are available, it's acceptable to cite the work by the short title (omit the initial article of the title). The short title should be up to 4 words in the proper format (the same format as the title in the reference list, e.g. if the source is a smaller part of a larger publication, such as journal articles, book chapters, or web pages, enclose the title in single quotation marks; if the source is a book, brochure, web site or report, italicise the title. 

See the general rules for in-text citations for more details:


  • The general format for a journal article / book chapter / web page (smaller part of a large source) is:

('Short Title' Year of Publication)

... to avoid visiting the doctor ('Australians turning to Dr Google' 2016).


  • The general format for a book / brochure / web site / report  is:

(Short Title Year of Publication)

... a memorial to all Australians who lost their lives in service during the First World War (Anzac Memorial 2012)... 

In-text citations for corporate authors


If the source has a corporate author (e.g. a university, association, or government department), include the corporate author and year in the in-text citation as (Corporate Author Year of Publication).

  • Use the shortened form of an organisation’s name in the in-text citation if the agency uses it regularly. (In the reference list, use the shortened form followed by the full name in parentheses.)
  • Organisations change names over time. Use the name that appears on the source.


For example:

  In-text citation

Australian trade with India expanded significantly in the second half of the decade (DFAT 2018).

  Reference list

DFAT (Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade) (2018) Fact sheets for countries and regions – India, DFAT, accessed 9 July 2021.


Different authors with the same surname in the same year*


When you reference works by authors who SHARE the SAME SURNAME, but who are in fact different people, you may:

  • Add the first initials of the first author to the in-text citation to identify the specific reference, e.g. (A Smith 2022) ... and (D Smith 2022).
  • Where the first authors share the same surname and first initial, include the authors full name (first and last names) for the in-text citation, e.g. (Adam Smith 2022) ... and (Andrew Smith 2022) ...


* This is not addressed currently in the Style Manual, but adding the initial to the author names helps readers avoid confusion with the in-text referencing and allows easier location of entries in your reference list.

In-text citations for works by the same author/s


  • When citing multiple works by the same author in the same year, put a letter after the date of each citation to differentiate the references. Put an ‘a’ after the date of the first work you cite, then a ‘b’ after the date of the second, and so on. eg (Smith 2022a) ... (Smith 2022b).


  • Additional works by the same author(s) are cited by date only, separated by commas, e.g.

    (Whittaker 1967, 1975; Wiens 1989a, 1989b)
    (Wong 1999:328, 2000:475)

Citing multiple works in one in-text citation


Citing more than one work in one citation

When citing multiple works in the same in-text citation, use semicolons between citations. Enclose all the citations in one set of parentheses. 

For example, Other researchers reported similar results (White and Jones 2017; Black 2018; Abaza 2019).


Citing two or more locations from the same work

Citations of different locations in a single sources are separated by commas:

For example: ... (Baron 2019, 194, 200, 197-98)...


Citing two or more publications by the same author

If you need to cite two or more publications by the same author, order the citations by the year. 

For example: ...reading and the physical media (Baron 2004, 2008) ...



Direct Quotations


If you include a direct quote, that is word-for-word, from a source, the in-text citation will include the author, year, and page numbers where the quotation appeared if available. Direct quotations must be accurate and follow the wording, spelling, and punctuation of the original source. 

For a short quotation (no more than 4 lines or 30 words):

  • Enclose a short direct quote in single quotation marks.
  • Include page numbers in the in-text citation only when the work has page numbers.
  • Use a colon between the date and page numbers without space. 
  • The in-text citation for a short quotation is placed after the closing quotation mark, before the period.
  • If the author is mentioned in the text, only the year and page/s cited appear in the citation.
  • See an example as below:

Reading is 'just half of literacy. The other half is writing' (Baron 2013:194). 

For a long quotation (more than 4 lines or 30 words) that is set in a separate block off from the text (block quotation, indented, without quotation marks), type a space after the concluding punctuation mark of the quotation and insert the in-text citation. There is no punctuation before or after the citation.

Secondary Sources


  • Please note: you should always use the original work wherever possible. Use the secondary sources only when it is impossible to obtain the original publication, e.g. it may be published in another language, or out of print.
  • For secondary sources, include both the original and the secondary sources in the in-text citation, e.g. (Baker 1918 cited in Bail 2016:75) or Baker (1918 cited in Bail 2016:75) ...

Sources cited within another source are known as 'secondary sources'. In-text citations to secondary sources must cite both the original source and the secondary source in the format of (original source cited in secondary source), and list the secondary source only in the reference list entry. 

For example, Grieve and Gear’s work from 1966 is being cited in Kirtley’s 2006 book on page 23. If you could not access the original Grieve and Gear’s work from 1966, you could reference it as a secondary source:

… the pattern (Grieve and Gear 1966 cited in Kirtley 2006:23) ... or ... Grieve and Gear (1966 quoted in Kirtley 2006:23) suggest a pattern of ...


In the reference list, list only the work you have actually consulted, i.e. Kirtley’s 2006 book, not Grieve and Gear’s work from 1966.

By following this pattern we are crediting the original author while being able to reference the source we are actually using.