Vancouver Referencing Style

Vancouver Numbered Referencing

The Vancouver referencing style is a numbered style used by journals in the health sciences to avoid clutter in the text, and improve readability. The in-text citations are superscript numbers, and the references at the back of the article are listed in the order of the numbers in the text, like endnotes.

Abbreviated titles

The Vancouver style requires the journal titles cited in the references to be abbreviated according to international agreement. If your source does not give the correct abbreviation of its title, you have to look it up.

You can find lists of titles here:


Digital Object Identifiers

Many journal articles have DOI numbers.

A very useful resource if you have a DOI number for your reference is the CrossCite website. It allows you to set the format to a wide variety of referencing styles, including Vancouver. Click the ‘Format’ button to see the formatted reference, click the  ‘Copy to Clipboard’ button to copy the result, and then paste it into your reference list. (You have to check that the program does not add commas to the author names – but it gives you a very good start, especially if there are lots of authors.)

DOI numbers are provided by the International DOI Foundation (IDF), a not-for-profit membership organization that is the governance and management body for the federation of Registration Agencies providing Digital Object Identifier (DOI) services and registration, and is the registration authority for the ISO 26324.

If you would like to find out about having your document and its Vancouver references edited, click here.

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