Saturday, April 4, 2020

How to cite articles

Hi everyone,

I wanted to write a quick post on how to cite references for Medicowesome Student Guest Authors (MSGAites!). Medicowesome is not a peer-reviewed journal, we are just a website where we post mnemonics, study material, and cool facts. Recently, we've been writing about COVID-19. Because there has been so much fake news and miscommunication about the characteristics of this disease, we decided that all posts related to COVID-19 would have journal articles in literature as references.

There are many styles in which you can format references. You can read more about it in this paper by Kambhampati & Maini, 2019. [1] It is preferred that you use a particular formatting style for all the references in your article. Simply adding links is not preferred because websites change their links all the time. The best way to ensure that your reader finds the article you're referencing is by using a proper reference format. A DOI is guaranteed never to change, so you can use it as a permanent link to any electronic article.

Most articles that use cite should be from a peer-reviewed journal. However, if you do need to cite a website then you can use the website format where you type the title of the website, the author's name, the link to the website, and the date you accessed this website on. The date is essential because websites can change or update their content.

Sometimes, you don't have the time to organize all your references. There are apps that can help you with it. Endnote, Mendeley, and Zotero are some of the many.

Using EndNote in Word for references

 You can also use Google Docs. They have a guide on how to find and add citations to your document. Link here.

Find and add citations to your document using Explore tool in Google Docs

Cite this for me is also a good website (especially for lazy writers like me!)

Sometimes, I simply click on the "cite this button" and copy-paste the auto-generated citation from the journal website. Most journals have it.

Cite This from JAMA website
That's all!


[1] Kambhampati SBS, Maini L. Formatting References for Scientific Manuscripts. Indian J Orthop. 2019;53(3):381–383. doi:10.4103/ortho.IJOrtho_197_19
[2] Too lazy to cite websites for this post :P


  1. Thank you very much for your post :)
    We do need to encourage the culture of citation among the whole medical community!


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