Referencing is an important part of any research work. It shows that a writer has integrity and acknowledges the sources of his research and findings. Referencing can be done in different ways, especially since there are different styles when doing research.
Apart from acknowledging the works of other writers, a researcher gives room for his readers to search deeper when he references or acknowledges the sources of his research work.
Referencing is the act of acknowledging that information used belongs to another writer or a set of writers. It proves to readers also, that a particular writer must have done an in-depth study to bring about his findings in a particular work.
A reference contains all that readers of work would need when they need to make reference to a writer’s source of study or research. Referencing styles vary. In different fields of study and generally in research, scholars choose to take any of the reference styles that suit their research work or field of study.
There are a large number of different referencing styles, but there are majorly three different styles of referencing used in academic journals, academic articles and every kind of research work. The names of these three styles are:
America Psychological Association which is commonly known as APA
Chicago, this style basically supports; Notes and Bibliography and Author-Date.
Harvard referencing style
In research, it is only proper that referencing should be done properly and the proper way to reference is to do things alphabetically. No matter the reference style used by a writer or a researcher, it is expected that the references are cited alphabetically. This way, readers of a particular work will find it easy to always refer back to a written work.
In referencing generally, there ought to be four information in every entry. These entries tell a reader who is the author of a written work, the date the book was published, if not a book then the date and occasion the journal or article was read or used. The place of publication and most importantly, the title of the written material. This set of information is enough detail to provide a reader with all he will need to refer to a source of information.
Automatic ways of formating your list of references in alphabetical order.
One has to first Highlight an entire reference text.
HOLD and PRESS Alt+A+S key. This brings out the SORT TEXT automatically.
PRESS the ENTER Key or OK on the SORT TEXT Dialogue Box.
By default, the said text will be organized in ascending order (A-Z) but where there is a different order, (descending order – Z-A), one can change it accordingly. After selecting the ordering format/style click on OK.
If changes need to be made, the UNDO button or Ctrl+Z can make that correction.
\Writing or organizing in alphabetical order simply means arranging things according to the 26 English alphabets. This way, readers know where exactly to search for a particular piece of information just as it is done in a library. Depending on the referencing style a writer chooses to use, the surname of an author and the initials of other names.
This is the first detail to appear on a reference entry, followed by the year of publication, the title of the book or written work and lastly the place of information. When arranging this, the author’s names should be arranged accordingly. Spacing and unnecessary punctuations should be totally avoided in a reference list, except another set of information are to be entered.
Below is the result of a text arranged in alphabetical order.
Andrew, B. (2019) Heavy Tongues of the Ancient Men: The African Secretes. Johannesburg: MacMillan
Akeem, A. Poem’s Time. Ibadan: Kunlaj Publishers, 2011
Benjamin, F. (2018) Research Methodology: A Guide to Academic Research. Webster Publishers.
Chigbo, U.C. A New Africa: Collection of Poems. Abuja: Go to the best International Ltd, 2015.
Dennis, A.B. Like Stars on Earth: Every Child’s Study guide. (3rd ed.) Indigo Publishers, 2020.
Eliot, G. (2017) Silas Marner. Edited by Atkinson, J. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
The above list is a reference list which contains different referencing styles. Though they are different all follow one order, they are all arranged in alphabetical order with the author’s surname appearing first. It follows that form until the last name which may or may not begin with a “Z”.
In conclusion, from the above reference list, it is seen that whichever referencing style a writer chooses to use for his work, where the dates and places of publication can change, the name of an author must first appear before any other thing. The title of the book which is usually Italicized can come either before or after the date of publication. This simply means that the names of the authors on a reference list should make up the alphabetic arrangement on a reference.
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