Healthcare Writing

Colleen Shannon, Freelance Medical Writer

Harvard references

How to use the Harvard referencing style

There are different ways to present your sources in medical writing, so they meet house style and accepted academic standards.

If you haven’t already seen it, please do have a look at my earlier post on using the Vancouver style for references, which kicked off this mini-series.

Now we are moving on to Harvard, which is another common choice. This is my own favourite because you don’t have to number the references within the article – always a headache when you come to second drafts and beyond. There is also something nice and traditional about it.

A citation for a journal article with more than two authors would look like this:

McAlpine, L. et al. 2014. UK postgraduate medicine examinations: opportunities for international candidates. Clinical Medicine. 14(5), pp. 500-505.

Within the text, you would cite the reference like this. (McAlpine et al, 2014)

Simple! You’ll need more details if you are working on a live manuscript. I think the University of Leeds has a great resource. You can also bookmark this page and come back to it the next time you are referencing up your own healthcare writing project.