My Information Skills

Self-paced tutorials on research and study skills for TAFE SA students

Examples - online documents

Online document

Often your sources will be downloadable files (e.g. PDF, Word or Excel files) that you accessed freely on the internet or were provided a link to in your online classroom.

Online document


To create an end-text reference in the Harvard style for an online document, we need to follow the following formatting pattern:

Formatting pattern for online documents


The Harvard end-text reference for this document will be:

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia, Australian College of Nursing & Australian Nursing Federation 2008, Code of ethics for nurses in Australia, NMBA, viewed 18 July 2017, <​L​C8InBn7hiEFeag%3d%3d>.


The in-text reference will look like this:

(NMBA, ACN & ANF 2008, p. 3)



  • Include the full names of all authors in your end-text reference. It is permissible to use commonly known abbreviations for organisation names in your in-text reference.
  • Ensure you include any version numbering or revision dates you find. This allows your reader to understand why content of the document may have changed if they access the URL at a later time.
  • Include a description of the document if the title alone is not meaningful enough.
  • The publisher will often be the organisation who hosts the website where the document is located online.
    • It is okay to abbreviate the publisher's name here if the publisher was also listed as an author.
    • If your lecturer supplied you with a direct link to the document, you may need to look a little deeper to determine where the document is hosted online. Try right clicking on the link and selecting 'copy link address' to determine the document's URL. The first part of the URL should help you to determine what website hosts the document.
  • ​Write your viewed date in full with the day first, the month written and full, and then the year.
    e.g. 1 December 2017
  • Your word processing software will often automatically turn URLs into a hyperlink. The Harvard referencing style specifies that hyperlinks should be removed and URLs listed between right angled brackets ( < > ). To remove a hyperlink, right click and select 'remove hyperlink'.
  • To identify the URL on a pdf, right click on the link to the pdf document and select 'copy link address'.