Academic referencing can be nothing short of a nightmare because there are so many different styles of referencing out there. Last year I went back to university for the first time in seven years and found that the simple mention of Harvard referencing conjured up an old, yet familiar nauseous feeling in my stomach (which I hadn’t experienced in precisely seven years). I’m sure many others share in my pain at the start of every academic year when they are introduced to a new referencing style.
It isn't that references aren't useful, they are! It's just that writing and referencing require two totally different processes. This makes doing them at the same time a touch difficult. I recall many occasions when I have tried to hold a fantastic idea I'd just had while trying to remain pedantic enough to insert references correctly.
There are reference generator websites out there. Although I was unable to find one which produced results that didn’t need to be modified in some small way. In general I found that these websites also caused slight frustration, because every time I needed to reference something I would have to open a new browser, fill in a form, cut and paste the text into my document and then modify it. Do this 20 or more times and that’s nothing short of painful!
Well worry no longer my friends as Mr. Proofread has a solution to relieve your torment! There is indeed a way to extend the reference style options within Microsoft Word to enable Harvard referencing and many other styles.
Click here and download the “styles.zip” file.
Copy the contents of the zip file into your Microsoft Word bibliography style directory. This directory can be found in different places depending on your machine and the software it is running. Two typical places for Windows are:
- program files\Microsoft Office\Office12\Bibliography\Style
- <winword.exe directory>\Bibliography\Style
Those using a Mac with Word 2008 may find the directory in either of these two places:
- Applications/Microsoft Office 2008/Microsoft Word.app/Contents/Resources/Style/
Open Word and navigate to “References” and use the “Style” drop down menu to select the style you want. See the image below:
I hope this blog post finds you in your hour of need! Automated citations should save you alot of time and may help to relieve the nausea that some of us feel when referencing our writing.
At this link there is an interesting tutorial that explains how to use Microsoft Word for formatting references in any style.
Below I summarize the salient parts.
First of all, we need to download some additional formatting styles, and we can found some of them at this link. Here, we will find a .zip file containing several .xsl files, which represent the formatting styles used by MS Word.
What we need to do is to copy those .xsl (all of them or just the ones we want to use) in . Actually this directory can vary according to the MS Office version or the system architecture (32-bit or 64-bit). However if you look at the main Office directory, the directory should be easy to find.
Then you just need to close MS Word and reopen it. And you will find all this additional formatting styles available in the dropdown box, under the Reference tab.
EDIT: For some Office version (I had this issue with Microsoft Office 2013, installed on Windows 8.1), you will probably need to copy the citation style (.xsl files) in , as explained in this website.