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Referencing Toolkit



The content in the Referencing Toolkit is based on the Referencing Style Guides created by Victoria University Library, Melbourne and has been reproduced with permission.

Referencing at Newington

While there are many different styles of referencing at Newington College the preferred referencing style for academic work is APA (7th Edition) also known as APA7.

Please use this toolkit for guidance on how to reference your work.

Please check your assessment notification and with your teacher for the style of referencing required as it may differ between subjects.


Why is referencing important?

Academic writing involves researching the ideas of other people, which you can combine with your own ideas and conclusions. Learning to acknowledge other people’s work through in-text citing and footnote referencing will help differentiate between their ideas and your own. This is central to the idea of academic honesty.

Referencing properly is an important academic skill that you will use not only at Newington, but also in your further studies at tertiary and beyond.

Some of the key reasons to reference include:

  • To show respect for the original source. Using someone else's work as your own without properly acknowledging it is considered intellectual theft.
  • To demonstrate that you have done the research. Your teacher wants to see that you have considered the experts when forming the basis of your arguments.
  • To show what research you've done. Your teacher must assess the quality of your research. Accurate referencing following a specific style will enable the reader to easily locate and verify your research.
  • To avoid plagiarism. Failure to properly acknowledge the work of others means you are implying that the idea or words are yours. This is plagiarism and the consequences may affect your academic progress.


What is plagiarism?

Plagiarism is the act of taking someone else's work or idea and passing it off as your own.

The consequences for plagiarism apply even for unintentional plagiarism.

Types of plagiarism

  • Directly quoting other people's words from online or printed sources without acknowledgement (you also need to acknowledge using images, tables, graphs, statistics, videos, music, formulae, laboratory data).
  • Paraphrasing or summarising someone else's thoughts or ideas without crediting and citing your source (even using someone else's ideas and rewriting it in your own words needs to be referenced).
  • Careless or incomplete referencing of your source.
  • Copying or buying an essay and handing it in as your own work.
  • Falsely creating a reference that doesn't exist.
  • Presenting another student's research data as your own.
  • Collusion - presenting an assignment as your own independent work when it has been produced in whole or part with other people (for example another student or tutor).

Avoiding plagiarism

The best way to avoid plagiarism is to recognise when you need to provide a reference.

  • If you have quoted directly from someone else's work you must place double quotation marks around the text and provide a reference.
  • If you have paraphrased someone else's work or used another persons idea or theory you must provide a reference.
  • If what you are writing is common knowledge or your own thought you don't need to provide a reference.

See Quotes in APA or Quotes in Oxford for more details and examples on how to quote and cite others work using different referencing styles.

Other strategies to avoid plagiarism include:

  • Start early. Mistakes often occur when you are rushed and there are no short cuts for referencing. Remember, you may be penalised for incorrect referencing.
  • Always note all the details you need for your reference list, particularly when printing from the Internet or electronic journal databases. Consult the referencing style guides for these details.
  • Remember to check with your teacher which referencing style they would prefer you to use.

How do I quote?

When should I quote?

Using a variety of sources is a critical academic skill and you are strongly encouraged to research and read widely when approaching your assessments. However, all of your research must be acknowledged and appropriately cited and referenced.

Using others words, in the form of quoting or paraphrasing, is an excellent way to incorporate your research into your writing. Quotes and paraphrasing are also useful to:

  • provide support from an expert
  • present another's argument or perspective to analyse, critique or comment on
  • include particularly interesting or historically important language

Direct Quotes

A direct quote is one that is copied exactly as presented by the original author.  This would include the same wording, punctuation etc.  

A direct quotation should be presented within quotation marks, followed by the author's surname, year of publication, and page number, inside curved brackets (if citing using APA) or via a superscript number linked to a footnote (if citing using Oxford).

APA Examples

[...] "as the drama draws to a close, its characters and events vanish into thin air, since, being fictions, there is nowhere for them to go" (Eagleton, 2013, p. 47).

Latimer (2016) states that "even if the contract is read, it may not be understood" (p. 400).

Oxford Examples

... was by no means the first to make this classical connection. As Dr. Peter Londey says of Bean he 'turned for inspiration to the new, young radical democracy of Athens in the fifth century BC'.1 Yet an early report of the Gallipoli landing indicated that the strain of the battle caused discipline to break down and for many soldiers to lose their way in battle.

P. Londey, 'A Possession Forever: Charles Bean, the Ancient Greeks, and Military Commemoration  in Australia', Australian Journal of Politics and History, vol. 53, no. 3, 2007, p. 345.

M. Lake and H. Reynolds, What's Wrong with ANZAC?: The Militisation of Australian History, Sydney, University of New South Wales Press, 2010, p. 8.


What is paraphrasing?

Paraphrasing refers to rewriting someone's ideas using your own words and is used frequently in academic writing.

Paraphrasing is more than changing just one or two words and punctuation.  It is about using your own words to represent the original text. Even when using your own words to explain someone else's idea - you must reference the original author.

To effectively paraphrase, read the paragraph several times to understand what it means, close the book or browser and then re-write it in your own words.


The second Vatican Council was a significant event in Australian and international Catholicism, which occurred over 45 years ago. (Black, 1991, p. 20).

Lichtheim (1970) argues that anarchism as a social movement is now only significant in historical context, as the social implications are no longer relevant in the current world (p. 228).

How to Paraphrase

When paraphrasing there is more than one way to place the citation within your text.

Citation at the beginning

Leskowitz (2017) describes the transcendent states that athletes experience …

Citation in the middle

… sport viewed as a spiritual path (Leskowitz, 2017), and one that is frequently followed in the west.

Citation at the end

… athletes using techniques adapted from holistic and complementary medicine (Leskowitz, 2017).

Different referencing methods may highlight the importance of the author, or give more weighting to the information.

Author-prominent citations

In his research, Leskowitz (2017) explores mindfulness, biofeedback …

Information-prominent citations

… applying up-to-the-minute advances in holistic and complementary medicine (Leskowitz, 2017).

When should I paraphrase?

  • to provide support from an expert
  • to present another's argument or perspective to analyse, critique or comment on
  • what you want from the source is the idea, not the specific language used to communicate it
  • you can summarise the key point of the source