About AGLC4 referencing

The Australian Guide to Legal Citation 4th edition (AGLC4) is a comprehensive guide to citing Australian primary and secondary legal materials. 

It includes rules for footnotes and bibliographies, and can be used to cite most Australian and many international legal sources. 

Manuals and resources

Getting started

Read through Chapter 1 (General Rules) of the AGLC4 manual. This covers citations, footnotes and bibliographies.  Pay particular attention to:

  • 1.1.6 Pinpoint References, to understand how to refer to a specific page, paragraph, footnote or other specific section of a source.  
  • 1.13 Bibliographies, to understand different rules for footnoting when including references in bibliographies 

You should also familiarise yourself with: 

  • Chapter 2 (Cases) 
  • Chapter 3 (Legislative Materials) 

The contents and index can then be used to find appropriate rules for other sources as you need them. 

What to do if something is not covered in the manual

AGLC4 is a substantial guide, but it is not comprehensive.

Where you cannot find a citation rule to exactly match the source you want to reference, locate a similar source in AGLC4 with similar citation elements and adapt it. 

As AGLC4 suggests, you should first reflect on the cardinal principles: clarity and consistency... As long as you are clear and consistent, you cannot go wrong. (AGLC4 pg. xi) If you adapt a rule for a particular source, use that same rule adaptation for all future references to the source.

AGLC4 provides examples for most citation rules at the end of each sub-chapter. Adapting examples of similar sources can be easier than adapting a rule to match your source.

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