Finalization of the research work is very challenging. This is mainly because by the time a researcher finalizes the study, there may be exhaustion and an urgency to complete the study. However this section is vital and should be completed with seriousness and uttermost care. This chapter discusses referencing, preparing the appendix and formatting the final work.



In research, the term “reference” applies to materials that have been referred to or quoted in the study. The reference list is a compilation of the books and articles referred to. This list is related closely to the literature review chapter. This is because all reference materials used in the literature review should be reflected in this section. The reference list should contain the most relevant and important publications.


The References in the Body of the Text

The appropriate point at which to indicate the source of an idea is as soon as is convenient. When it is at the beginning or middle of a sentence, the researcher should indicate the surname of the author and year of publication. The year of publication should be enclosed inside brackets, for instance, “Orodho (2003) pointed out that…,”“Kombo (2005) indicated that….” At the end of a sentence or paragraph, one needs to enclose the surname of the author and year of publication in brackets. The name and year should be separated by a comma, for example (Orodho, 2003); (Kombo, 2005).


Direct Quotations

Direct quotations should be accurate. If there is need to omit some words within a quotation, the writer should use three ellipses (…)to indicate the omissions. If the quotation is short, that is, a maximum of three sentences then use quotation marks within the text. Longer quotations are usually indented and typed in single spacing, without quotation marks. In both cases, the pages from which the quotation comes must be indicated at the end of the quotation (Kombo, 2004:69).



The use of another author’s idea, but expressed in the writer’s words is referred to as paraphrasing. In this case the writer indicates the source author and year, for example (Kombo, 2004).


Citation Styles

One of the challenges experienced by researchers is how to cite references. The two most common methods for citing published work are:

  • the number system
  • the name-year system



With this system, references to published work are by use of numbers, for example:

There are many undergraduate texts on Process Control [1-4]. The most popular seems to be the book by Kombo [2]. However, the only one to deal with process design and process control in an integrated manner is that by Orodho[4J.


There are many undergraduate texts on Process Control 1-4. The most popular seems to be the book by Kombo 2; However, the only one to deal with process design and process control in an integrated manner is that by Orodho 4.


In both examples above, three citations were made. The first referred to publication numbers 1, 2, 3. and 4; the second citation referred to publication number 2, while the last citation referred to publication number 4. The fact that the numbers relate to items in the reference list is indicated by the square parentheses I…] or by the superscripts. The convention a researcher follows will depend on the guidelines and regulations of one’s institution.

When using the number-system citation style, the order of the corresponding reference list is important. By convention, the first cited publication will be the first on the list and assigned the number “1.” The second cited publication will be the second on the list and assigned the number “2” and so on. That is, the publications in the reference list are presented in the order that they were cited. However, the reference list must not contain duplicates. This means that the researcher will have to keep track of the publications that have been cited and their associated order in the reference list, so that he/she can use the appropriate number when he/she citing a publication more than once, as in the above examples.



Using the name-year citation style, the above example becomes:

There are many undergraduate texts on Process Control (Kombo, 1991; Orodho, 1990; Paul, 1995; Wamahiu, 1988). The most popular seems to be the book by Kombo (1991). However, the only one to deal with process design and process control in an integrated manner is that by Orodho (1995).


The first citation named 4 authors using their surname. Associated with each surname is the year of the publication. Notice that they are presented in alphabetical order, within round parentheses, (…). The author is separated from the year by a comma. Author-year pairs are separated by semi-colons. The next two citations named the authors using their surnames with the publication year of the cited publications enclosed in parentheses. Therefore, there are two ways to use the name-year citation style. When using this citation style, the reference list is presented in alphabetical order.


How a publication is cited also depends on the number of authors. If there are two authors, then cite as follows: “Orodho and Kombo (2002) modified the Minimum Variance objective function to include…”


“The Generalized Minimum Variance self-tuning algorithm was proposed in the late 1970s (Orodho and Kombo, 2002).” When a publication has more than two authors, cite as follows:


“Montague et al. (1987) considered…”


At the point at which a source is cited in the text, indicate the author’s surname, followed by the year of publication.


In a sentence simply indicate the surname and put the year of publication of the document in brackets, that is, Kombo (2004). However, if the source is indicated at the end of a sentence or paragraph, then include both the author and year of publication in brackets (Kombo, 2004).


A comma separates the author’s name and year of publication. If an author has published several works in the same year and one is using more than one of these, then lower case letters are used after the year for identification, that is, Orodho (2003a, 2003b, 2003c and so On).


If several sources are being referred to at the same time, then the authors should be organized alphabetically and the sources separated using semi colons (Kombo, 2004; Orodho, 2003).


If quotations are used, indicate the author, year of publication and page(s) of the quotation. Page(s) can be indicated by using p. (pp. if many) or using colon i.e. (Orodho, 2003, p.69) or (Orodho, 2003: 69). If many pages (Orodho, 2003: pp. 69-71) or (Orodho, 2003: 69-71).


Listing of References

There are a number of types of publications used in research. These materials include articles, magazines, journals, conference proceedings, books, dissertations, theses and research reports. Each category of materials requires a different presentation format. However the general order of organizing the references is as follows:

  1. Surname of the author
  2. Initials of the author
  3. Date of publication
  4. Title of the material
  5. Place of publication
  6. Publishers

Author’s surname, initials, (year of publication). Title of material. Place of Publication: Publishers.



There are various presentation formats for different materials. This

is as follows:

a) Journal Articles – These are the most common sources of cited mate rial and include specialist technical journals as well as trade journals,

They are presented in the following format:

  1. Surname of the author
  2. Initials of the author
  3. Year (date) of publication
  4. Title of article: The first letter of the title is capitalized while the rest are in lower case.
  5. Name of journal (underlined or italicized). You may use an abbreviated form for the journal name, but make sure that it is the recognized one. Most journals will have the “official” abbreviated title printed at the top of its pages.
  6. Volume, followed by number of issue. Instead of issue numbers, some journals have a month of issue. In such cases, substitute the month for the issue number.
  7. Pages in the journal where the article appears.

Author’s surname, initials. (Year of publication). Title of article, Name of Journal, Volume (number, pages).


For example:

Johnson, U.W., Johnson, H., Stanne, M, and Garibaldi, A. (1990). Impact of group processing on achievement in cooperative groups. Journal of Social Psychology, 130, 507-516.


Garner, R. (1990). When children and adults do not use learning strategies: Towards a theory of settings. Review of Educational Research, 60, 517-529.


b) Conference Proceedings.— Papers presented at conferences are also common sources of research information The format is as follows; Author(s), (year). Article title, Name of conference, Location of conference, page range. For example:


Dore, S.D., Perkins, J.D. and Kershenba’um L.S. (1994). Application of geometric nonlinear con trot in the process industries: a case study, Proc. IFAC Symposium Presentation slum, ADCHEM ‘94, Kyoto, Japan, pp 501-506


The author(s) surname appears first followed by initials. The year is enclosed in parentheses and terminated  with a full-stop. The first letter of the title is capitalized while the rest are in lower case. You may use abbreviations to indicate the t.rpe of publication and the name of the conference. For example “Proc.” is usually used in place of “Proceedings”; “Pre.” for “Preprints”; “Cof” for “Conference”; “Symp.” for “Symposium” and so on.


C) Books — To list books, use the following format:

Surname of the author, initials of the author. (year of publication.) title of book. edition number, place f publication, publishers. For example:


Awuondo, C.O. (1993). Introduction to Socioology .Nairobi: Basic Books Limited.

Kombo, D. and Waiyaki, M. (2002). Sociology of Education. Nairobi: Kenyatta University Press.


Orodho, A.J. (2003). Essentials of Educational and Social Science Research Methods. Nairobi: Masola Publishers.


Gay, L.R. (1992). Educational Research: Competence  for Analysis and Applications.

4th  Edition, New York: Macmillan Publishers.


In referencing books, the first letter of keywords in the main title are in capitals, and the title is in ita1ic There is no need to indicate  the edition of the book if it is the first edition.


Some books are compilations of articles from different authors. For such cases, the format used is a cross between that for journal articles and books. This is as follows:

Author (s), (year). Title of article Book, In: Name of book, Edition number, Chapter number, Name(s) of editors, Name of publisher, place of publication.

For example:


Runielhart D.E., Hinton G.E. and Williams, R.J. (1987). Learning internal representations by error propagation, In: Parallel Distributed Processing: Vol. 1, Ch. 8, D.E. Rumeihart and J.L. McClelland [editors], MIT Press: Cambridge MA.


Note the use of the word “In:” and the difference in which the names of the authors and the names of the editors are presented: editors’ names are listed with their initials first. However, when you list the book without reference to authors of particular chapters, editors are considered the authors, in which case the item will be listed as:

Rurneihart, D.E. and McClelland, J.L. [editors]. (1987). Parallel Distributed Processing: Vol. 1, MIT Press: Cambridge MA.


d) Dissertations, Theses and Research Reports

Dissertations, theses and academic research reports are listed using the format below:


Author(s), (year). Title in italics. Type of publication, Research Group, Name of institution, Country. For example:


Peel, C. (1995). Aspects of Neural Networks for Modeling and Control. PhD Thesis, University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK.


Bloggs, J. and Other, A.N. (1998). The Effects of Vodbull on Class Attendance.

Research Report No. 123, Social Impact Research Group, Smirnoff Institute of

Technology, Vladivostok, Russia.


Kombo, D.K. (1988). Factors influencing student’s poor performance in the K.C.E

Examination among Harambee Secondary schools in Kathiani Division, Machakos

District, Kenyatta University, Kenya.


When listing a research report, include the report number where applicable.


e) Company Reports and Manuals

Sometimes, a researcher may need to cite material contained in publications by companies and from manuals. In such cases there are no named individuals for authors. Use the format below:


Name of company or organization, (year). Title in italics. Place of publication. For example:

Mathsoft Inc., (1999). Mathcad 2000 Reference Manual. Cambridge, MA.


f) Information from the World Wide Web (www)

Nowadays, much information can be obtained from the Internet, typically websites but sources include newsgroups and on-line forums. The format to use for such publications is:


Name of Author(s) or company or organization, (year), Title of article, URL, date found.


The URL (Uniform Resource Locator) is the full Internet address of the article. Due to the transient nature of on-line information, it is important to include the date when one found the information. Fr example:


Tham, M.T. (1997). Distillation: an introduction, http:/ /

distil/distil0.htm, 30 May 2001.


g) Personal Communications

Sometimes, a researcher may have used information passed on to him/her by a colleague or another person, via a phone conversation, letter, email or other forms of communication The researcher can include this information in the reference list. The format to use is:


Name, (year). Personal communication, Affiliation of named person.

For example:


Blogg, J. (1996). Personal communication, University College London, UK.


The reference list should be compiled as a researcher writes the chapters. The references should be organized alphabetically using surnames. If the author are several publications listed, they should be organized using the date .year) order. If there is more than one author, the names and initials of all the other authors should appear. All authors should be given credit. All the materials cited should be referenced.


The reader should note that the material presented here is not exhaustive; there are many variations. However, in the absence of other instructions, and as long as you are  consistent, the guidelines presented above should be sufficient.



In a research proposal or thesis, there is a specific format for numbering. There is specific numbering for the following:

  • chapters and sections in chapters
  • figures and diagrams
  • tables and lists
  • equations


Each chapter of the proposal/thesis should be assigned a number.

For example:




Chapter sections and subsections should also be assigned a numerical index. For example, the second section of Chapter 1 could be:


1.2 Statement of the Problem, while a subsection of Section 4 in Chapter

4 could be: 4.4.1 Simulation results.


Notice the use of different cases in the 3 heading categories. The title of chapter is in upper case (capitalized); the heading of a section has the first letter of keywords in upper case; while only the first letter of the first word in a subsection is capitalized. These styles are used as visual cues to indicate the different levels of headings. Avoid having more than 3 levels, for instance,, as they can make the text messy especially when referring to them. If you need to categorize further, the contents of a subsection, use a different font style. Bold and underlined text is a popular format.


To refer to a particular chapter, use the formats given by the following examples:

“Chapter 2 provides a review of work in this area. The reason for this modification, stated in Chapter 3….” Notice that the word “Chapter” is written in full with a capital “C.” The following examples show how references are made to sections or subsections:


“The procedure outlined in Section 5.3 was employed to…”

“Section 3.2.2 discussed the implication of…”


Here, the word “Section” with a capital “5” is used to refer to both sections and subsections; the latter being obvious from the numerical index.


Figures and Diagrams

In proposals and theses, all figures and diagrams must be captioned and given a numerical index. Captions should appear below the figure or diagram, and should be sufficiently descriptive without being too long. Simply state what the illustration is showing and do any explaining in the main text. Captions for figures and diagrams have the format: Chapter number. Figure number.



Figure 2.4. The Physiotherapy Strategy.

The word “Figure” is used generically to cover all illustrations, such as drawings, flow charts, sketches, and so on. Spell out the word in full. Note too, the positions of the full-stops. The numerical index is composed of the chapter number, a full stop, followed by the figure number, terminated with another full stop. Thus, the third illustration appearing in Chapter 4 would have the caption:


Figure 4.3. Schematic of control system for the methanol-water column.


You may use the abbreviated form, “Fig.”, when referring to illustrations if the reference appears in the middle of a sentence. For example:


“The control scheme, shown in Fig. 4.3, is quite common.”


Otherwise, write the word “Figure” in full, for instance, “Figure 4.3 shows a common control scheme for a distillation column.”


Tables and Lists

All tables and lists, must be captioned and given a numerical index, and the numbering style is identical to that used for figures and diagrams. The captions should be placed below each table and list. So, for example, the second table in Chapter 3 would have the caption:


“Table 3.2. Performance measures obtained using the proposed procedure.” Abbreviations should not be used when referring to tables and lists – write out the word “Table” in full; with a capital “T.”



These are mathematical as well as chemical expressions. Each major equation should be assigned a numerical index, with the following format: (Chapter number. Equation number). The following shows equation number 6 in Chapter 4.


A=2B÷C____________ (4.6)


Use the following rules when referring to equations.

  • When a sentence starts with the word “Equation,” write it out in full followed by the numerical index.
  • Otherwise use either the abbreviation “Eq.” or “Eqn.” making sure that you maintain consistency throughout the proposal/thesis. When referring to a collection of equations, use the corresponding plural forms, i.e. “Eqs.” or “Eqns.”


For example:

“Equation (5.1) shows the effect of…”

“Substituting Eq. (3.3) into Eq. (3.7) yields …““The process model, given by Esq. (4.4) to (4.10),…”


When referring to equations in text contained within parentheses, you need not enclose the equation’s numerical index within parentheses. As such, “The process model, (Eqs. 4.4 to 4.10)” is much neater than “The process model, (Eqs.(4.4) to (4.10))

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