Free Harvard Reference Generator for Students

Looking for a quick way to complete your academic work successfully? Look no further! Harvard reference generator will create a proper reference list in no time.


🔥 Benefits of Our Reference Generator

  • It is free. There are no hidden fees or paywalls, and you can use it as many times as you wish.
  • It's easy to use. Our tool is intuitive, user-friendly, and straightforward.
  • It saves you time and effort. The reference generation process is faster using our tool than creating references manually.

✅ How to Use Harvard Style Referencing Generator

To generate your references in several seconds, follow these simple steps:

  1. Select your source type from the list. You can choose a website, book, journal article, magazine or newspaper article, etc.
  2. Type in the information about the source. Provide the author's name, DOI number, and other relevant data.
  3. Type in other details if necessary. You can mention additional contributors, website title, date, etc.
  4. Click the Add button. You can generate several references this way.
  5. Get the results. Now, you can download an in-text citation or a reference.

You can also paste the link to your source, and our tool will reference it automatically. Just check the preview and edit it if needed.

🏫 Harvard Reference Style: Definition & History

The Harvard system is a way of citing references by author and year, usually in parentheses, in the text of scientific articles or essays.

In 1881, Edward Laurens Mark, a professor of anatomy at Harvard, wrote a groundbreaking paper on embryogenesis. It included an author-year citation in parenthesis with an explanatory footnote on page 194. This paper is considered the first usage of the Harvard system, which became very widely used, particularly in the field of education.

The picture states when Harvard citation style first appeared and where it is used.

📖 Harvard Citation: In-Text & References

To use citations correctly, it is vital to understand the features of in-text citations and references. Remember that these two types must be used together in your paper and should be formatted accordingly.

Harvard In-Text Citation

In-text citations reference the author and date of the source directly in your text's body. Every time you quote or paraphrase something from a source, include an in-text citation that will direct your reader to the complete reference list.

The citation should be put inside brackets right after the quote. The formula is simple: who said this plus the year when it was said. You can also include page numbers in your citation to make it more precise.

If you’re referring to quoted authors directly in the text, then you don't have to put their names in the citation; a date will do.

Harvard Citation Style: Reference List

Full references are given in alphabetical order in a list at the end of your text and are not included in the overall word count. References must provide detailed information about the source you've cited in your writing.

The picture enumerates the components of a Harvard reference.

The universal template of a complete reference looks like this:

Author’s surname, initials. (Year) Title of the source, City of publishing: Publisher, pages where the quote is located.

However, this template can vary depending on your source type. For example, referencing a website is different than referencing a book. Let's see how each source type should be quoted.

📚 Book
  • The author's name, initials. (Year of publication) Title of the book, Edition/Volume. City of publication: Publisher, pages where the quote is.
  • If it's an online book, add the link and date when you last accessed this source.
📑 Journal Article
  • The author's name, initials. (Year of publication) "Title of the article", Name of the journal, Volume (issue), pages where the quote is.
  • If it's an online journal, add Digital Object Identifier (DOI) or a link to this source and a date when you last accessed it.
📰 Magazine or a Newspaper Article
  • The author's name, initials. (Year of publication) "Title of the article", Name of the magazine or newspaper, Date when you viewed this article, pages where the quote is.
  • For an online-only source, add DOI or a link to this source and a date when you last accessed it.
🌐 Website
  • Surname of the author, (Year of publication) The web page's title, Available at: URL, (Accessed: Day Month Year).
  • If there is no author available, then just write the article's name.
📲 Blog
  • he author's name, initials. (Year of publication or last update) "Title of Post" Name of the blog, day and month it was published or updated [Blog]. Available at: URL (Accessed: Day Month Year).
✍️ Social Media
  • Name of the author or organization’s name, initials. [@username] (Year of publication) "Title" or text. [Website name] Day and month when it was posted. Available at: URL (Accessed: Day Month Year).

💡 Harvard Style Reference Examples

Now, let's see what different sources look like as Harvard style references and citations. Remember that you'll need an in-text citation and a corresponding source in your reference list to cite a source in Harvard style properly.


Printed Book


In-text: (Marx and Engels, 1996)

Reference list: Marx, K. and Engels, F. (1996) Das Kapital: A critique of political economy, Washington D.C.: Eagle, pp. 180-182.



In-text: (Mitchell, 2021)

Reference list: Mitchell, M. (2021) Gone with the wind. Available at: (Accessed: 27 September 2022.)

Journal Article

Online-only Journal


In-text: (Wickham, 2014)

Reference list: Wickham, H. (2014). "Tidy Data," Journal of Statistical Software, 59(10). Available at: (Accessed: 03 September 2022.)

Printed Journal


In-text: (Lang, 2014)

Reference list: Lang, A-G. (2014). "A Data Aggregation Program for the Behavioral Sciences," Journal of Statistical Software, 59(3.) doi:10.18637/jss.v059.i03.

Magazine & Newspaper Article

Printed Magazine or Newspaper


In-text: (Ignatius, 2014)

Reference list: Ignatius, A. (2014) "The best-performing CEOs in the world," Harvard Business Review, September, pp 12-13.

Online Only


In-text: (Ignatius, 2014)

Reference list: Ignatius, A. (2014) 'The best-performing CEOs in the world', Harvard Business Review, viewed 18th September 2022, Available at:


If There Is a Date


In-text: (History extra, 2020)

Reference list: History extra (2020) Your guide to the history of democracy. Available at: (Accessed: 12 September 2022.)

If There Is No Date Available


In-text: (Google, n.d.)

Reference list: Google (n.d.) Privacy and terms. Available at: (Accessed: 12 September 2022.)


If There Is a Date


In-text: (Holt, 2023)

Reference list: Holt, S. (2023) “Easy Pancakes” Allrecipes, February 2023 [Blog]. Available at: (Accessed: February 01 2023).

If There Is No Date Available


In-text: (Christensent, n.d.)

Reference list: Christensent (n.d.) “Build a Fusion Reactor” Autodesk Instructables, January 2023 [Blog]. Available at: (Accessed: February 01 2023.)

Social Media

A Facebook Post


In-text: (DSPCA, 2017)

Reference list: DSPCA [@DSPCA] (2017) We are opening up our dog Internship again offering a unique opportunity to gain experience in a fast paced shelter environment … [Facebook] 30 January. Available at: (Accessed: 12 December 2020.)

And with that, we're concluding our article. Remember all the tips listed above, and feel free to use our Harvard reference generator. It doesn’t cost anything and can help your academic writing! We also recommend using our awesome summarizing tool for your essays.

❓ Harvard Reference Generator FAQs

To create a Harvard reference, you should include the author's name, and the publication date in parentheses, followed by the title of the work in italics, and then the publication information.

For in-text citations, include the author's last name and publication date in parentheses at the end of the sentence before the final punctuation.

Yes, you can. If you use Custom-Writing's citation generator, you may download the results as a Word document. It’s very convenient, as you can directly upload and download the text from Word to our Harvard generator and vice versa.

Yes, it's totally OK. There is no academic law preventing people from using a reference generator. It's a helpful tool that helps you organize your reference list faster and more accurately than by doing it manually.

We recommend using Custom-Writing's referencing generator. With its help, you can create reference lists in just a few moments. Of course, you can write them manually, but that will require a lot of time and attention. So, why not speed things up with our tool's assistance?

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