Expert Tips on How to Cite a PhD Dissertation with Examples

Photo of author

By Riley

It is of utmost importance to cite a PhD dissertation. By properly citing sources, you can demonstrate your academic integrity while upholding ethical considerations. It not only demonstrates respect for the original authors but also adds validity to the context by providing a foundation of reputable sources. So, an understanding of how to cite sources for your thesis seems essential.

Are you wondering how to compile a list of references in your dissertations? You may have heard about different referencing styles, such as APA, Chicago, MLA, or Harvard. Thinking about which one is more appropriate is irrelevant. This is because these all are equally popular in institutions.

What matters is your university’s guidelines for referring your paper. That’s why we are going to talk about all of these different patterns. You can have a basic understanding of each, so using any style would be hands-on practice whenever the tutor asks you to follow a specific one. However, if the citation part of your paper is giving you a tough time as you are not efficient in it, then hiring a PhD dissertation writer can help with this difficulty. Following the standards, they can provide you with error-free write-ups to boost your academic performance.

Continue reading if you are stuck on the referencing part of your thesis.

How to Cite a PhD Dissertation?

When writing a piece of work, such as a PhD dissertation, you need to refer to the material from where you collected data. This process is called referencing. For instance, if you are consulting scholarly articles, you should refer them. To help you translate your intent of efficient referencing, below are the different writing styles to follow up. Let’s discuss each of these individually. 

How To Cite PhD Dissertation APA 7th Edition?

Following the APA style to cite a PhD dissertation acknowledges others’ work by using parenthetical in-text citations. This familiar structure helps the reader understand the text. If you are asked to follow the APA style to cite PhD dissertations, you must read the basic rules before randomly starting to compile this list.

  • The reference list must be arranged in the alphabetic order.
  • Arrange it by the first name of the author. However, if the first author’s name is similar then a second name can be considered instead.
  • If the name of the author is not known, then you can consider the title of the paper. Here, ignore the initial words “A, “An”, and “The” and take the next word for its alphabetic arrangement.
  • If there are two references whose authors’ names are similar, then consider the year of publication.


A reference list example given by James Cook University Australia following the APA style is displayed below. It can help you to cite a PHD thesis efficiently.

How to Cite PHD Dissertation Chicago?

The Chicago bibliography system is mostly used in the subject of humanities to cite a PhD dissertation. The proper use of this referencing system can help the learners protect themselves from accusations of plagiarism. Following the system might be difficult but there are key tips that make its implementation easier for the researcher. Here to discuss them.

  • Do not use large and bold fonts for the bibliography title.
  • There must be a hanging indent where the first line begins at the margin, while the subsequent lines are written in an indented manner.
  • If the name of the author is not known, then arrange the list alphabetically by the name of the title. There is no need to make a separate list for such sources.
  • There is no need to separate primary and secondary sources unless your supervisor asks you to do so.
  • If the author’s name is repeated again and again, then you can use “3-em dash” in its place.

That’s true if you think the Chicago referencing style to cite a PhD dissertation is difficult. Especially if you are stressed with the workload of experimentation, paying attention to these minute details can be challenging. Here, buying a dissertation online can help you get your write-up done by a professional.


Murdoch University provides details of this referencing list to highlight how to frame the information when following the Chicago style in reference PhD dissertation.

How to Cite PhD Dissertation MLA?

To use the MLA style to cite a PhD dissertation correctly, you need to pay attention to some basic framework. There are just a few guiding principles rather than an extensive list of rules. Once you are familiar with them, you can easily use them on any type of paper. Here is an overview of the whole process.

  • Begin with writing the author’s last name which is followed by the comma. It must be ended with a period.
  • The title of the source should be listed in italics. 
  • The other contributors to the paper, such as translators, illustrators, or editors, should also be credited. If they are relevant to your research work, then it is crucial to name all of them as Michel. Madness and Civilisation: A History of……. Translated by Steven Howard, The-Random House, 1988.
  • If the same source is published on more than one date, then it is sufficient to use the most relevant date for your work.


The CSUDH University Library explain the MLA citation details in the following manner to cite a PhD dissertation.

How to Cite PHD Dissertation Harvard?

In Harvard referencing style, there are two places to cite a PhD dissertation. One is within the text, and the other is to provide the list of sources at the end of the paper. In general, every work in the reference list must be part of the text and vice versa. Find below general principles for the up-to-date referencing of your paper following Harvard style.

  • The in-text citation is identified by “author-date style”.
  • The name of the author can be part of the text. However, the date and page number are written in brackets.
  • If multiple references are used within the text, then each reference is separated by a comma.
  • The names of books or journal articles are not italicised.
  • Only the first name of the article title is written in capitals.


The Dundalk Institute of Technology provides a Harvard reference guide to cite a PhD dissertation for elaborating in text and reference list citation style.


We all are aware of different referencing styles when citing a PhD dissertation. It has been in use since our college years. However, its importance increases more in your university education. It might be ignored in college, but in university, getting alleged plagiarism is a serious concern. That’s why we have provided the guidelines above to help you grasp the basic understanding of these styles. It can prevent you from making any mistakes and assist you in writing a quality, flawless paper.

However, if more than this guide is needed to cite a PhD dissertation and you assume it is challenging to abide by the conventions, then availing PhD dissertation writing services is the best alternative. Instead of taking risks at the cost of compromising the quality of this crucial document, getting it done by a professional can grant a safer end.

How to Reference In A Dissertation Or Thesis: 7 Mistakes To Avoid (Including Examples)