Vancouver Style in Text Citation

Vancouver style in text citation is one of the most difficult things a student may need to use in college writing. This style was developed in 1978 specifically to do research and scholarly work in medicine and clinical practice. It means that Vancouver referencing is used primarily in medicine and related disciplines. It is particularly popular in the journal articles published for medical professionals. Therefore, if you are student in medicine and have to use a Vancouver referencing template, the best thing you can do is reviewing our blog here. 


Vancouver Style In-Text Citation

This Vancouver referencing guide was created according to the official recommendations of ICMJE. Although the recommendations provided in this guide may slightly differ from the Vancouver style guides administered by other colleges and universities, it should become the starting point for any medical student who wants to advance his or her position in research and scholarly work. 

Vancouver in Text Citation:

  • How citations are placed: Before you decide to use Vancouver reference style Microsoft word, you should know that in-text citations in Vancouver style come after that part of the sentence which was borrowed from an external source. You may want to include a citation before the period or after it. However, you will have to be consistent throughout the whole paper.
  • How citations and references are numbered: All in-text citations and references must be numbered consecutively. However, if you want to use the same reference more than once, then you will have to use the same number over and over again.
  • Vancouver referencing figures in text: The same goes with the graphic content: all tables and graphs must be numbered consecutively. Each table or any other graphic element must have a title and a legend. Also, the data from the table must be either mentioned or incorporated into the text. If you copy a table from an external source, do not forget to include an in-text citation.
  • Sources such as personal communication: Vancouver style formatting discourages the use of unreliable sources in scholarly writing. Such sources are sometimes described as "personal communication". It means that you cannot reliably reference an email, an interview or a private conversation as a source of relevant information in your paper. However, if that is unavoidable, then do not forget to include the name of the person and the date when the conversation took place.
  • Online resources: because the Internet keeps changing, it is better to keep a print screen or hard copy of each Internet source that you use in your paper. However, reduce the number of Internet sources to a minimum. 

How to Use Vancouver Referencing in Text 

The public health community constantly updates its recommendations and guidelines for doing clinical research and conducting literature reviews (1,2) and meta-analyses (3-5). However, even the most experienced medical researchers and practitioners are not always ready to incorporate these recommendations into practice (6). As researcher Marylin Johnson notes, "It is never too late to add rigor to research, but it is better to follow all clinical and research procedures from the very beginning of the project" (May 3, 2015). 

Vancouver style title page and vancouver style essay recommendations:

  • On the last page of your Vancouver style paper you will present a list of references, each being single-spaced and followed by a double space. 
  • Numbering is critical: you will arrange your sources not by name but by number, consecutively, in the same order that they are mentioned in the text.
  • Author names and titles: Begin with the last name of the author, followed by a space and initials. Do not use any periods when writing the initials. Then you will put a comma or a period. In case you have a source with more than six authors, then you will have to use "et al.". If you are using an edited book, you will need to use the editor's name instead of the author's. If the author of the chapter in this book is not the editor, then start with the author's name, followed by the chapter title, and then the name of the editors and the book title after the word "In:". 
  • Title Writing: In each title, the first word must be capitalized. Other words in the title should be printed using lower-case font. Do not use italics and do not underline the title. If this is not the first edition of the book, include its number like "2nd ed." 
  • Referencing books: After you print the title and edition number, followed by a period and a space, include place of publication such as city and state (or country, if applicable). If the publisher and the author are the same, then include the full name of the author (e.g., American Nurses Association), and abbreviated name for the publisher (e.g., Association). 
  • Referencing journals: Include the title of the journal, followed by a period and a space, a year of publication (or date, if available), followed by semi-colon. Then you will include volume number, issue number, followed by colon. Include page range and period. For example, Am J Nurs Assoc. 2015;11(2):33-35. 
  • If you do not know how to abbreviate the journal's title, then you should use Medline's Journals Database. If you still can't locate the title of the journal, abbreviate it on your own following the examples that you may be able to find in Medline Database/ 
  • Page numbers: If you use journals, then you will have to include the page range for the entire article. However, if you are using just a part of the journal article, then you may want to specify the page range that applies (111-8). Do not include page ranges for books. However, include a page range for a chapter in an edited book. 
  • Referencing online resources and databases: In most cases, you will have to reference online resources in the same way that you reference printed articles and books.

However, it is still advisable that you include some additional information to help your readers locate the original source: 

  • Do not forget to mention that it is an Internet resource. Use the word "Internet" in square brackets after you reference the title of the journal or the book.
  • Do not forget to include the date on which you retrieved the online material. Type the word "cited" followed by the retrieval date.
  • Provide additional information to help your readers locate and retrieve the original source. Include an URL for the book or article that you are citing. If the URL ends with a slash, then you will have to add a period after it. Otherwise, do not use any periods at the end of the URL.
  • If the journal article also has a DOI, then you are strongly advised to add it for referencing.
  • If you are using a closed personal database or need a login and password to locate the source, you must include a note after the URL. 

Referencing Examples Provided Below

If you need more information, you may also use the following sources:

  • ICMJE Recommendations
  • Sample references from ICMJE
  • Citing Medicine and similar books.