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Writing in the Health Sciences: Citation Management

A Resource for Faculty and Students

Citation Basics

A citation is a reference to a past work used to inform the present work. While there are different reasons for referencing another's work such as paying homage to past research and substantiating claims, engagement in discourse of any kind must successfully cite the literature (and data) reviewed for publication. The below tools can help any author successfully navigate the proper format needed for incorporating citations.

Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL) - OWL at Purdue is a great source for writing assistance within all disciplines. Contains information about APA style standards along with other criteria for formal usage.

Instructions to Authors in the Health Sciences - Instructions for authors regarding over 6,000 health science journals.

NLM's Recommended Formats for Bibliographic Citation - The National Library of Medicine's advisory tutorial on citation standards for a wide variety of sources.

International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) Requirements for Manuscripts -  list of how to properly format citations for papers submitted to biomedical journals.

DataCite - Features an instruction manual for citing data within research reports.

How to Cite Datasets and Link to Publications - A guide for formatting and properly converting data sets, this tool also explains the proper citation methods for data collections for effective preservation. 

ICPSR- Why and how should I cite data? - A very cross-institutional tool which provides information and examples on how to cite data

Dryad - Dryad shows the proper method for citing data sets prior to preservation within repositories.

NLM Citing Medicine

Citing Medicine: The NLM Style Guide for Authors, Editors and Publishers - an ebook published by the National Library of Medicine detailing all of the relevant criteria for citing information within biomedical research reports.

Citation Management Tools

You can save time citing your references by using a citation manager software. If you are wanting to merely collect and organize your reviewed literature, EndNote and Refworks can help you to do this with several platforms (see this guide for further info and downloading instructions). The below tools are not included within this guide and must be downloaded independently.

Mendeley - this is a desktop-based reference management tool with multiple interactive features allowing for scholarly collaboration and integrated research.

Zotero - can organize multiple media formats including A/V and other non-text-based platforms.

Eewoww - allows for multiple platform interface and sharing of information. Includes a software to transition text citations into html.

APA Citation Standards

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