Harvard Referencing: Journal articles

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Harvard Referencing: journal articles

Basic format to reference journal articles

The basics of a Reference List entry for a journal article:

  • Author or authors. The surname is followed by first initials.
  • Year of publication of the article.
  • Article title (in single inverted commas).
  • Journal title (in italics).
  • Volume of journal.
  • Issue number of journal.
  • Page range of article.

Gray, L 2018, 'Exploring how and why young people use social networking sites', Educational Psychology in Practice, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 175-194. 



Referencing journal articles: Examples

Material Type In-Text Example Reference List Examples

Direct quote

Journal Article: 
Print or Online

Indirect quote


According to Gray (2018, p. 175), there is ‘significant gender and age differences related to how young people use SNS’.
Gray (2018) suggests that young people’s perception of Social Networking is related to their association with their offline lives.

Gray, L 2018, 'Exploring how and why young people use social networking sites', Educational Psychology in Practice, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 175-194. 


An article obtained from a Database or from E-reserve is referenced in the same way as a print article.

Journal Article with two authors

(Blocker & Wahl-Alexander 2018)
Blocker and Wahl-Alexander (2018) have found…

Blocker, D & Wahl-Alexander, Z 2018, 'Using sport education in a university physical activity course', JOPERD: The Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, vol. 89, no. 2, pp. 56-61.

Journal Article with three authors

(Wilmott, Fraser & Lammes 2018)
Wilmott, Fraser and Lammes (2018) noted that…


Wilmott, C, Fraser, E & Lammes, S 2018, ‘I am he. I am he. Siri rules: work and play with the Apple Watch', European Journal of Cultural Studies, vol. 21, no. 1, pp. 78-95.


Journal Article with more than three authors

(Battisti et al. 2018)
Battisti et al. (2018) compared the …


Show only the name of the first author or body, followed by et al.

Battisti, C, Fanelli, G, Bertolino, S, Luiselli, L, Amori, G & Gippoliti, S 2018, 'Non-native invasive species as paradoxical ecosystem services in urban conservation education', Web Ecology, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 37-40.

Provide the names of all authors in the reference list.

Journal Article from a website

(Celume, Besançon & Zenasni 2019, Introduction section)
Celume, Besançon and Zenasni (2019) suggest...

If no page number is available, include the location of a quote using a paragraph number or section heading (for e.g. 'Introduction section', as above). The word paragraph can be abbreviated to para.

Celume MP, Besançon M & Zenasni F 2019, 'Fostering children and adolescents’ creative thinking in education: theoretical model of drama pedagogy training', Frontiers in Psychology, vol. 9, viewed 11 February 2019, <https://www.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fpsyg.2018.02611>.

For journal articles retrieved from a website (other than Library databases), include a viewed date and URL.


Video Transcript

Video Transcript: Harvard: Journal Articles

This introductory video will demonstrate how to reference journal articles using the Victoria University Harvard Style.

A journal article retrieved from a library database can be referenced as though it were a print journal. The essential elements you require to create a journal article reference include: Author or authors including surname and initial. [Call out: include the second initial if available]; Year of publication, Title of article. [Call out: Note: no capital after the colon for the article subtitle]; Title of journal; A lower case ‘vol.’ followed by the volume number; A lower case ‘no.’ followed by the issue number; A lower case ‘pp.’ followed by the start and end pages of article.

The use of correct punctuation is another important element of Harvard Style. And notice the use of single quotation marks around the article title, and that the title of the journal is in italics.

The Library Search or database record for a journal article should give all the information required to create a reference. Alternatively, you will find the essential information contained in the article itself. Please note that you may need to use both the database entry and the article PDF to get all the necessary pieces of information. [Call out: Note: you may need to scroll through the PDF to get the page range].

Taking the key details from the database entry and article, this is the correct reference for this article.

In addition to the reference list entry, you are required to include in-text references in the main body of your work. This is an example of the in text reference when paraphrased and as a direct quote.

All author names are given in the reference list entry. When giving in-text citations for articles with more than three authors, only give the first author’s surname, followed by ‘et al.’ [Call out: Note: the full stop after ‘et al.’]

Remember all in-text references should be listed in full in the reference list at the end of your document, presented alphabetically on a separate page titled “References”.

For further assistance, refer to the VU Harvard Referencing Guide. Contact the Victoria University Library through ‘Ask a Librarian’ chat or email or ask for help at any library service point.

[Video Ends.]