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2021’s Complete Guide on How to Write a Bibliography?

A bibliography is a well-structured list of all the resources used in the article, thesis, project or other literature. 

In his PhD thesis, John has stated that “BRCA1 is a gene responsible for breast cancer” whereas Mcburthen has stated that the “BRCA gene is a candidate gene cause breast cancer as per WHO research.” 

Which statement do you believe? Mcburthen’s, right! The reason, he said, is what WHO has researched, meaning the information is trustworthy and correct. Authenticity is important in research and academic writing. By doing citations and enlisting a bibliography we can validate our work. 

Bibliography or reference is a key element of PhD writing, PhD thesis, research statement and research paper. It’s indeed a pivotal structural element of the thesis or research work. 

Ideally, a research work- thesis or research paper should have an abstract, introduction, review of literature, material & methods, results & discussion, conclusion and bibliography. 

Many bibliography styles exist in which APA and MLA are the two most popular. Although the structure of the bibliography is as important as other elements of the thesis. 

Put simply, a thesis or PhD thesis is a written draft, an assay or project written in order to gain the utmost academic honor, the PhD. The present article clearly stating the importance and structure of a bibliography, along with that I will also discuss how to write a bibliography in 2021, various formats, style, sample and examples. 

What is a bibliography page?

Bibliography, often known as references, is a structured portion of literature authenticating information and provides navigation to original articles or research.

Usually, it is attached or listed at the end of the article, or on the bottom of the writing. And therefore several last pages of a thesis are considered as bibliography pages.

It isn’t just “work cited.” it is all the relevant material drew upon to write the paper the reader holds.

-Tippie College of Business. 

“Copying a book by hand” is the literal meaning of the Greek word “bibliography”, however, citation and bibliography are employed to avoid plagiarism.  

Biblio- “Book”; Graphy “To write”. 

Also known as “work-cited” or “referencing”, the bibliography’s importance is to avoid plagiarism and provide trustworthy/ correct information, We already have given the example above. 

Plagiarism is when someone copy- partially or fully another’s intellectual work such as a book, book chapter, research work, research title, research paper or thesis work. 

Of course, using other researcher’s work in our thesis makes our statement as well as research stronger and it’s required too. But we can use it in a way that strengthens our work and gives credit to the original researcher

The only way for that is to mention the original scientists (citing) and providing a navigation way to the work (bibliography). Before leading ahead, please read this information on the difference between a citation and referencing.

Format of bibliography

Noteworthy, the format varies among styles; the basic structure of the bibliography remains the same. 

A typical bibliography page should have information such as the name of the author or authors, the title of the article/book or literature, name of the Journal or publishing house, year and date or publishing, volume and section of the journal and page number. 

Here is the format: 

Chauhan, Tushar and Patel R. Kumar. “Genetic Status of Eunuch -An In-depth Review. “Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology, Vol. 2, no.1 (2010): 472-484. 

Now let’s quickly move to the main part of this article “how to write a bibliography”.

How to write a bibliography? 

To enlist or write a bibliography page, one has to understand many things associated with it. Here we have discussed the important points to write a bibliography. 

Select a style to write

A definite style should have been selected to structurize the bibliography. Commonly used styles are 

  • APA- American Psychological Association
  • MLA- Modern Language Association  
  • Chicago style citation 
  • Turabian citation style 
  • IEEE style

Usually, universities decide which style to use in PhD writing or thesis. APA and MLA are the most popular and common citation and referencing styles among all. 

Understand the format of the bibliography 

It is also important that PhD candidates understand the structure or format of the bibliography. We have explained it above, the typical structure consists of the name of the author or authors, the title of the article/book or literature, name of the Journal or publishing house, year and date or publishing, volume and section of the journal and page number. 

Other information such as version, location and names of other contributors are also mentioned in the format. Now let us understand each element stepwise. 

Author’s name: 

The author’s name or list of author’s names are listed, usually, at the beginning of the bibliography, to give credit to them. The second name, along with the initial of the first name is the common format. 

Two authors are separated by the “&” sign or more than two or three authors are employed with “et al.,”. Here is an example of how you can write it, 

  • T Chauhan or Chauhan T 
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J 
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J et al., 

Use of year and date:

Research updates every year, meaning, new research in the same field or area has been done every day. Therefore, it is important to mention the date and year of research publication. 

Stating this in the bibliography helps readers to find the material (original document) from the archive and justify your work. Again, the format may vary. Here is an example of how you can do it. 

  • T Chauhan or Chauhan T (2018)
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J (2018)
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J et al., (2018)

Note that as per some formats, the year can be mentioned after the journal name. 

The title of the article

Mentioning the title of the research is also crucial. Use the original, intact and unchanged title of the original researcher. Breaking or mistaking in the title misleads the readers. Many ways to mention the title, here is an example. 

  • T Chauhan or Chauhan T (2018). “Genetic Status of Eunuchs- An in-depth review.”
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J (2018). “Genetic Status of Eunuchs- An in-depth review.”
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J et al., (2018). “Genetic Status of Eunuchs- An in-depth review.”

Importance of noting publishing house or journal: 

Noting publishing house or Journal name provides navigation as well as elevates credit of work. The quality of the work or research is decided by which journal it is published. 

The Thumb rule for indicating Journal’s name is to write it in italic/ full or some initials. Here is the example, 

  • T Chauhan or Chauhan T (2018). “Genetic Status of Eunuchs- An in-depth review.” Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J (2018). “Genetic Status of Eunuchs- An in-depth review.” Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology
  • Chauhan T & Suthar J et al., (2018). “Genetic Status of Eunuchs- An in-depth review.” Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology

 Or you can write, T Chauhan or Chauhan T (2018). “Genetic Status of Eunuchs- An in-depth review.” Clin Biotech and Micr. 

Note that the first initial of the journal name must be capitalized. 

Volume and number of article:

The volume and number of the article clearly navigating the literature. Meaning, using it you can find the article in a journal. See this example,

Chauhan, Tushar and Patel R. Kumar. “Genetic Status of Eunuch -An In-depth Review. “Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology, vol. 2, no.1. 

In this Journal in the second volume, the first article is  “Genetic status of eunuchs”. 

Why page number? 

At the end of the bibliography, the page numbers are mentioned which again provides proper navigation. 

Chauhan, Tushar and Patel R. Kumar. “Genetic Status of Eunuch -An In-depth Review. “Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology, vol. 2, no.1 (2010): 472-484. 

Examples of Bibliography: 

APA style: 

Chauhan, T., & Patel, R. (2020). Genetic status of eunuch -an in-depth review. Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology, 2(5), 472-484.

MLA style: 

Chauhan, Tushar and Patel R. Kumar. “Genetic Status of Eunuch -An In-depth Review. “Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology, vol. 2, no.1 (2010): 472-484.

Chicago style: 

Chauhan, T., Suthar, J., and Patel, R.K. “Genetic Status of Eunuch -An In-depth Review. “Clinical Biotechnology and Microbiology 2, no.1 ( June 2010): 472-484.

IEEE style: 

T. Chauhan, J. Suthar, and R. K. Patel, “Genetic Status of Eunuch -An In-depth Review. “Clin Bio and Micro., vol 2, pp. 472-484, June 2010. 

Bottom line: 

This article explains how to write a bibliography in terms of PhD thesis or research article. However, the format may vary a bit for different literature that we also have mentioned. 

Importantly the bibliography provides information such as the clear navigation to original research, source of information, credit to the original researchers and importance of work. 

As we noted, at the end of the page or article, a bibliography is attached. Note that the bibliography is attached in accordance with the citation provided in the article. 

Conclusively, you can write a bibliography by using these elements: 

Name of author or authors who contributed to the work cited.  

Journal name in which the article has been published or accepted.  

The title of the article is the title of the original work. 

Date and year of publication in which the work has been published.  

Section, volume and number of articles to navigate the content thoroughly. 

Location or place where the research was conducted or published 

Page number to correctly navigate the article.  

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