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UC Referencing Guide

Personal Communication

General guidelines

Works that cannot be retrieved by the reader are cited in the text as Personal Communications. This can include emails, text messages, personal interviews, telephone conversations, live speeches, unrecorded lectures or letters. Personal communications are cited in-text only with no entry in the Reference List. Include the name of the sender and the date of the communication e.g. (C. Barnes, personal communication, May 13, 2004)

If personal communications are recorded in some way use the format of the recorded medium. e.g. audio recording, video recording, archive.

Format - Archive

Author, A. A. (Year of communication). Description of material. Name of Collection (Box/file number). Name of Repository.

Example - Archive

Allport, G. W. (1930-1967). Correspondence. Gordon W. Allport Papers (HUG 4118.10). Harvard University Archives.

No Author / Editor

General guidelines

If there is no author - substitute the title in the position of the author.


Title of work. (Year of publication). Publisher. DOI or URL


Macroeconomics, prices and quantities: Essays in memory of Arthur M. Okun. (1983). Blackwell.

No Year

General guidelines

If the date is not known use n.d. in place of the year. If you have an approximate date use the abbreviation ca. (circa) and the approximate year.


Author, A. A. (ca. year). Title of work. Publisher. DOI or URL

Author, A. A. (n.d.). Title of work. Publisher. DOI or URL


Smythe, V. (ca. 2007). Ant colonies: How they communicate. Emu.

Browne, J. D. (n.d.). Forensic science as a career. Tower.

Citing a Source Within a Source

Secondary source refers to information first reported in another source, the primary source. If it is possible, find the original source and read it, citing the original source.  If this is not possible then use the procedure below.

Provide a reference to the secondary source (the source you read) and, in-text, identify the primary source then write "as cited in" the secondary source that you used.  Include the original year if you know it.


(Author 1, Year of original, as cited in Author 2, Year)

Author 1, Year of original (as cited in Author 2, Year)

In-text reference

Lilly (as cited in Maxwell, 1999) stated that ...

"..." (Schwartz, 2006, as cited in Burton, et al., 2009, p.63)

Reference list

Maxwell, F. (1999). Phonology. Brooks Cole.

Burton, L., Westen, D., & Kowalski, R. (2009). Psychology. Wiley.

EndNote Reference Type

Personal Communication