Referencing with Automated Support

In Microsoft Word there is a ‘References’ tab.

References Tab

This does the formatting of references for you. All you need to do is give it the relevant information. Click on the ‘References’ tab. You’ll see an area called style. Simply click on the style that applies to your discipline.

Reference Style Select

The next thing you’ll want to focus on is ‘Manage Sources’. Click on ‘Manage Resources’. If you’ve already given the system information it will appear in the ‘Master List’. Simply click on and copy relevant references into the ‘Current List’.

Manage References

If information about the books and articles isn’t there already, you simply click on ‘new’. Click on the ‘Type of Source’ and select something e.g., book, article, report, conference, webpage, etc. Then just fill in the blanks as appropriate.

Adding new info

When adding author, check to see if you want to click corporate author if the author is a company like Google or an organiation like a university (se image above). If not, click on edit. Fill in the name of authors for a given source and add as appropriate. Click ok when you’re done.

Add author

Note: Regardless of what type of source you select you can click on ‘Show all bibliography fields’ if you want to add more information. When you’re done, simply click okay and the info will be in the system. Repeat for every source you plan on using in your report/essay.

Epic Reference

Sometimes all the information for a reference isn’t available so you don’t always have to fill in every part. Make sure you do a thorough search and if you can’t find something just inform your lecture/grader and they shouldn’t penalise you. Make sure what you want is in your ‘current list’.

source manager

Then click on bibliography in ‘references tab’.


The ‘bibliography’ option will then generate the reference section for you with all the formatting done. Hover over it with the mouse and the update option will appear should you amend your references later on. In some styles like APA you may have to manually change the heading ‘Bibliography’ to ‘References’.

Bibliography example

You can also automate citation format when your document has th. Click on the part of your text where you want to add a citation. You can click on ‘insert citation’.

Insert citation

Hover over a citation and click on the down arrow for options if you want to e.g., add page numbers for direct quotations (FYI: In general, don’t rely on large quotes too much, it’s often better to paraphrase things into your own words to show your understanding of material).

citation example

New versions of referencing styles can emerge and the formatting for automated citations hasn't always been perfect so look out of mistakes, especially if using multilple citations in the same section e.g., (Tierney 2010; Tierney 2021) vs (Tierney 2010) (Tierney 2021). Note the slight difference in brackets )( and use of ;

Tip: If you're a third level stuent, your university may sometimes run workshops on advanced referencing and relevant software like Endnote (compatible with Word). These are sometimes available for free so it’s always worth asking your department if they’re aware of any workshop facilities.Library staff can also sometimes offer you or network you with support.