Referencing multiple authors in Harvard style

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Referencing allows you to acknowledge different ideas and materials that you borrow from other authors’ works. Harvard style referencing has two parts: 

  1. In-text citation – A citation that’s provided in your work (in-text) that indicates where a stated idea or direct quotation comes from.
  2. Reference list – A list of references that correspond to all in-text citations in the text. Each reference is longer than the in-text citation and contains details like the author’s name, publisher name, year published, place of publication, volumes, and other source information.

Below we will cover how to cite multiple authors in both an in-text citation and a reference.

Two authors are provided

When referencing a source that has two authors, the reference should have the names of both the authors. 

For in-text citations, include the surnames of both authors and the year published.

For references, the surname and first-name initial of each author is listed with “and” between them. 

In-text citation structure:

“Quote” or paraphrase (Surname 1 and Surname 2, Year published)

OR

Surname 1 and Surname 2 (Year published)

In-text citation example:

“Ridley noticed that the ornament from Lena’s graduation had already joined her charm collection” (Garcia and Stohl, 2015).

OR

Garcia and Stohl (2015) noticed that…

Example reference structure (book):

Surname 1, Initial(s). and Surname 2, Initial(s). (Year published) Title in Italics. Place of publication: Name of publisher.

Reference example:

Garcia, K. and Stohl, M. (2015) Dangerous creatures. London: Penguin Books.

Three authors are provided

A reference for a source with three authors will have the names of all three authors. List the authors in the order they are presented in the source (not in alphabetical order). 

For in-text citations, include the surnames of all authors and the year published.

For references, the surname and first-name initial of each author is listed. A comma separates the first and second author names; the word “and” separates the second and third author names. 

In-text citation structure:

“Quote” or paraphrase (Surname 1, Surname 2 and Surname 3, Year published)

OR

Surname 1, Surname 2 and Surname 3 (Year published)

In-text citation example:

“The parts of the brain are the cerebral hemispheres, the cerebellum, and the brainstem” (Drake, Vogl and Mitchell, 2015).

Example reference structure (book):

Surname 1, Initial(s)., Surname 2, Initial(s). and Surname 3, Initial(s). (Year published) Title in Italics. Place of publication: Name of publisher.

Reference example:

Drake, R.L., Vogl, A.W. and Mitchell, A.W.M. (2015) Gray’s anatomy for students. 3rd rev. edn. Philadelphia, PA: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier.

Four or more authors are provided

When referencing a source that has four or more authors, use “et al.” to shorten your list of authors mentioned. 

For in-text citations, use “et al.” in italics after the surname of the first author. The meaning of “et al.” is ‘and others’. See our guide on “et al.” for more details.

References can also use “et al.” to shorten the list of authors. However, if your institution prefers to have all names listed in a reference, list all the authors by surname and first-name initial. A comma separates the all author names except for the last two names. The word “and” separates the last two author names. 

In-text citation structure:

“Quote” or paraphrase (Surname 1 et al., Year published)

OR

Surname 1 et al. (Year published)

In-text citation example:

“Normal ventricular depolarization proceeds as a rapid, continuous spread of activation wave fronts” (Jameson et al., 2018, p. 1676).

Example reference structures (book):

Surname 1, Initial(s). et al. (Year published) Title in Italics. Place of publication: Publisher.

OR

Surname 1, Initial(s)., Surname 2, Initial(s)., Surname 3, Initial(s)., and Surname 4, Initial(s). (Year published) Title in Italics. Place of publication: Name of publisher.

Example references (book):

Jameson, J.L. et al. (2018) Harrison’s principles of internal medicine. New York: McGraw Hill Education.

OR

Jameson, J.L, Fauci, A.S., Kasper, D.L., Hauser, S.L, Longo, D.L. and Loscalzo J. eds. (2018) Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine. New York: McGraw Hill Education.


Published October 29, 2020.


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