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Publishing in the university's own series: References

Writing instructions for University of Vaasa series Acta Wasaensia, University of Vaasa Research Papers and University of Vaasa Reports

Persistent identifier

Web pages change, move, or disappear.

The persistent identifiers (PID) for documents are publisher's commitment to keep documents available regardless of changes in web pages. The persistent identifiers are registered centrally. When an end-user wishes to access a certain document, the identifier in his request is ‘resolved’, i.e. the correct document is retrieved, without the end-user needing to know the exact location of the document.

DOI - Digital Object Identifier


URN - Uniform Resource Name

ARK - Archival Resource Key

Avoid reference rot

General principles and how references are indicated

In the University’s publication series, references within the text are usually enclosed in brackets. Another approach, the running numbering of references, is also possible. Footnotes should be used as sparingly as possible. Use a consistent referencing system throughout your work.

A reference in the text

Every source that has been cited in the text is mentioned in the list of references and every source mentioned in the list of references should be cited in the text.

  1. The reference should be made direct to the list of references
  2. The reader can check in which work and on which page of which source the information is to be found.

This applies to the reference policy in cases where references are cited in brackets in the body of the text. The reference is enclosed in brackets as follows: 1) Author/s, 2) year of publication, 3) colon, and 4) page number/s. If page numbers for an e-book are incorrect or missing completely, you can refer to the number of the chapter or section, for example.

It  is important that the reference points directly to the list of references:
a reference (Isaacson, Hunt & Blum 1965: 77) in the text points to the list of references, from which the following source appears: Isaacson, R. L., Hunt, M. L. & Blum, M. L. (1965). Psychology. The Science of Behavior. New York: Harper & Row; citation from page 77.

You may have cited Ilkka Niiniluoto in Johdatus tieteenfilosofiaan, which appeared in 1999. His proposition, which you cite in your own words, is on page 33 of the book. The reference should be made as follows: (Niiniluoto 1999: 33).

If you cited Niiniluoto’s thinking from several pages of the book, the reference should be: (Niiniluoto 1999: 32–34). The mark between the numbers is a dash, which is longer than the hyphen.

If citations come from several, not consecutive pages, the reference should be: (Niiniluoto 1999: 15, 53, 88).

If a citation continues from the same book and the same pages, subsequent references can be abbreviated “Ibid”.  (Ibid: 15, 53, 88). In this case the citations must be consecutive.

If Niiniluoto wrote more than one book in the particular year, these should be identified with letters: the book mentioned first as “a”, the next book “b”, etc. (Niiniluoto 1998a: 78, Niiniluoto 1998b: 123, etc.).

Two or three authors should be referred to as follows: (Isaacson, Hunt & Blum 1965: 77)

If there are more than three authors, only the first author is recognized in the reference: (Isaacson et al. 1998: 44) or (Hakkarainen etc. 1997: 66–67).

If the cited text has no personal author, the name of the organization (author) is preferred, or the document should be used: (University of Vaasa, Faculty of Humanities 1999:12) or (Narcotics Decree 1993: Section 7).

If the writer’s name appears in the body of the text, it need not be repeated in the brackets. Only the year and a reference to pages, if necessary, are put in the brackets. Example: Tornikoski (1999: 12–13) suggests that...

If a conclusion is generalized from a number of sources, all of these are enclosed in the same brackets, for example, in the order of the year of appearance. The references are separated by semicolons: (Tornikoski 1999: 12–13; Koskela 2000: 88).

If to one sentence only, the reference is added immediately after the sentence before a full stop (Mäkinen 2005: 71).

If an entire paragraph is a citation from a certain piece of writing, the reference is added at the end of the paragraph after the full stop. The reader will know that all three sentences provided in this paragraph (or the thoughts contained in them) are citations from the given pages of the particular book. (Paunonen 2004: 47–48) or (Paunonen 2004: 47–48.)

The meaning of the reference can be accentuated by certain words or abbreviations, e.g. compare (cf.) or see. Example: In considering Popper’s views, Niiniluoto concludes that Popper thought criticalness is one of the basic elements of science (cf. Niiniluoto 2002: 33).

Direct quotation

The right to quote is a key element of scientific practice and a precondition for the evolution of science. When a paper has been published, its contents can be freely dealt with, even against the author’s will. The right to quote is set out in the Copyright Act: it is permissible to make quotations from a published work if they are compatible with fair use and only to the extent justified by the purpose (Copyright Act 2:22). At the same time, however, this is an obligation to anyone using quotations, as it requires adequate and correct references. Also, the moral rights of the author should be respected: the quotation must obey the spirit of the original text and it must not give a misleading impression of it. Besides, a writer using quotations must accept that his or her published text may be quoted by others.

The use of quotations in research papers shows that the researcher is familiar with the discipline. They are recommended where a mere summary of the point might alter the original idea, when the writer finds it important to preserve the original wording, or in the case of a definition.

Presentation of quotations

A quotation is put in quotation marks in the original form, and if anything is omitted, this is shown with three periods or two dashes in brackets or square brackets. The writer’s own insertions, if any, are enclosed in square brackets.

Example: ”The difference between behaviourism and cognitivism resembles Aristotle’s differentiation between theoretical sciences   [---] and practical sciences [---]; theoretical…” (Niiniluoto 1999: 67).


Instead of quotation marks, a direct, longer quotation may be typed in italics. An intendation may be used for separating a quotation from body text.

Quotations must be used in their original context and sentences must not be separated from their context. To ensure this, it is important to reproduce a sufficiently long passage of the original text. A researcher can use quotations either to support his/her own paper or as a counterargument to the original text. Thus, a quotation helps the writer to evolve his/her own presentation.

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