Preparation of students in academic referencing and citation: the case of school of education students at the university of Zambia.

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Muzata, K.K & Banja, MK
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Zambia Journal of Library and Information Science
This study investigated whether students of the School of Education at the University of Zambia were adequately prepared in referencing and citation or not. A mixed methods approach was used; both quantitative and qualitative methods were employed in this study. Self-administered questionnaires were used to collect data from two hundred and ten (210) third and fourth year randomly selected undergraduate students. Further, five hundred (500) students’ assignments were collected and checked to verify lecturers’ marking and comments on referencing and citation. Quantitative data was analysed by the use of the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS version 16.0) to derive frequencies, percentages, mean, standard deviation, significant differences and similarities between programmes and the responses provided. Results indicated that students were exposed to many different referencing styles. The most common among these were the American Psychological Association (APA) referencing style, followed by the Harvard and Chicago referencing styles in that order. The results further showed that the majority of the students did not demonstrate understanding and skills in referencing and citation. Failure by students to understand referencing was reported to result from, among others, inconsistencies by lecturers in their own understanding of the referencing styles. Additionally, little emphasis was put on referencing by lecturers when marking assignments. The study recommends that referencing and citation should be accorded serious attention in teaching university students in order to prepare them as scholars and for advanced studies. Further, lecturers themselves need to upgrade their understanding of referencing and citation in order to provide appropriate guidance to their students.
Referencing style. , Citation. , Academic writing.
Muzata, K.K. & Banja, M.K. (2019). Preparation of Students in Academic Referencing and Citation: The Case of School of Education Students at the University of Zambia. Zambia Journal of Library & Information Science (ZAJLIS), 3 (1 & 2) 67-89