Referencing1 Essay Example

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Academic Integrity and Honesty: Referencing

Academic Integrity and Honesty: Referencing

The contemporary society features additional ease with which people can obtain information to support their research projects or evidence to their arguments. With the advanced information and technology, information material are available on the internet, where all types of information can be obtained including audio, video, texts, and pictures, amongst many others. However, it is highly important to acknowledge the source of information and appreciate the authors, since it is one of the many factors that form part of honesty and integrity. This essay explores referencing as one of the criteria of demonstrating academic integrity and honesty. The paper seeks to discuss the two forms, in text and end text, of referencing, purposes of referencing and implications associated with referencing ignorance.

Referencing is described as a way of providing evidence to back up or support claims and assertions in a peace of academic work (UNSW, 2013). It can be argued that there are times that an individual may need to communicate a finding. It is essential that he or she provides evidence to support the finding claims. This aspect is where referencing comes in. The individual would be required to provide the evidence and acknowledge the contribution of the authors of the evidence to the current work. Therefore, referencing is seen as a way of acknowledging the support that other authors have offered and provided to the current academic work.

Another need to reference comes to the idea that the audience or target readers may want to expand further on the information or evidence that the current work provides. Therefore, in this perspective, referencing would provide support for the readers to see for themselves what other authors say about the current discussion. Additionally, referencing is a way of avoiding plagiarism and making writing more academic. According to an article by University of Oxford (n.d.) about plagiarism, it is described as the act of “presenting someone else’s work as your own, without their consent, by incorporating it into your own work without full acknowledgement” (n.p.). This conduct is deemed one of the most serious academic offenses; it results in severe punishment in most cases.

According to University of Toronto, failing to appropriately cite information used in a piece of academic work can consequent serious penalties and punishments at the unit level, course level, school level, or national level. At the course unit level, students can be assigned zero grade and/or suspension from undertaking the course at that time. Similarly, at the course level, the student can score zero and/or get suspended from continuing normally with the course. At the university level, the student, upon admission or proof or guilt, can be asked to pay for the losses or expenses incurred during such incidences. Also, the student can be expelled or get suspended for a period that is based on the regulations of the school. Nationally, depending on the tribunal governing integrity and issue of academic integrity, relevant punishment and penalties can be imposed.

Referencing is done in two aspects; in text and end text citation. Within the text, the writer is expected to acknowledge the ideas of others by providing the surname of the authors and year, page number, or paragraph number from which the information is obtained. At the end text, the student is expected to provide a list of references with full information of the authors that appeared within the text, alongside full details of their work. Therefore, the student should provide full name, the title of the work, date of publication, publisher, and, if deemed necessary, where the material was found.


The University of New South Wales (UNSW) (2013). Why is referencing important? Citations are not used simply to avoid plagiarism; they have other important roles too. Retrieved 26th May 2017 from:

University of Toronto (n.d.). Academic Integrity: failing to appropriately cite information. Retrieved 26th May 2017 from:

University of Oxford (n.d.). Study skills and training: plagiarism. Retrieved 26th May 2017 from: