Skip to Main Content


Vancouver Style

The Vancouver citation style is commonly used in medicine and science, and uses a numeric system of referencing. This guide is based upon Citing Medicine: the NLM style guide for authors, editors, and publishers (2nd edition).

In-text citation:

References are indicated by the use of a number in the order of appearance in the article. Either Arabic numbers in curved brackets () or in superscript can be used as long as it is consistent.

Direct citations: If the author’s name forms a natural part of your sentence, then the surname should be followed by the number indicating the order that it appears in the document.

Indirect Citations: If you do not mention the author’s name within your text, you should place the number outside of the sentence, after the full stop.

Reference list:

Displayed at the end of the article, providing full details of all references cited in-text. References are listed in numerical order, and in the same order in which they are cited in text (not in alphabetical order).

Use only the initials of the authors' given names. No full stop or space between the initials. Last name comes first. Journal titles should be abbreviated.

Examples using the Vancouver style

Resource type In-text citation Reference list


Souza1 states that...

1. Souza TA. Differential diagnosis and management for the chiropractor. Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning; 2016.

Book Chapter

Hordern1 wrote that…

1. Hordern P. Sickness and Healing. In: Noble TFX, Smith JMH, editors. Early Medieval Christianities  c600-c1100. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press; 2008. p. 416-32.

Journal article

Strkalj et al2 have identified...

2. Strkalj G, Schroder T, Solyali V, Pather N. A preliminary assessment of the fifth-year chiropractic students' knowledge of anatomy. J Altern Complement Med. 2011;17(1):63-66.‚Äč


The research is supported by Gorrell3...

3. Gorrell L. The effect of manual and instrument applied cervial spine manipulation on mechanical neck pain (MNP) in adults [PhD thesis]. Sydney, Australia: Macquarie University; 2014.

Conference paper

This was amply demonstrated (4)... 

4. Engell SE, Triano JT. Paraspinal soft-tissue layer differential movement from spinal manipulation therapy (SMT) preload forces. Paper Presented: at Association of
Chiropractic Colleges Conference 2015, March, Los Angeles, United States.

Website can be found online (5)... 

5. Chiropractors’ Association of Australia. Fact Sheet: Neck Adjustments- Benefits and Safety. [Internet] 2010 [Updated 2015 Feb 15, Cited 2015 Mar 3] Available from:

Government report

NSW Health's strategic plans (6)...

6. Health System Planning and Investment. NSW State Health Plan: Towards 2021. North Sydney: NSW Ministry of Health; 2014 June 36p.

Vancouver guides

The attached quick guides and tools created by other institutions provide an overview of the Vancouver referencing style. In these documents you will find examples for different types of materials and details on specific variations of citations.

Resources for the Vancouver style

In the Vancouver and JAMA styles, the titles of journals must be abbreviated according to the style used in the the NLM Catalog: Journals referenced in the NCBI database.

This style requires you to display abbreviated journal names in your bibliography. However, the abbreviations are not always included when references are exported from databases such as Medline or Embase.

Term lists maintain consistency of author names, keywords and journal titles.

EndNote's term list feature enables you to import a subject term list of your choice, so that the abbreviations will automatically appear in your reference list.

Using generative artificial intelligence tools (e.g. Chat GPT)

Related Referencing Guides/Tools