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Library and Information Science

Writing and referencing

On this page, you will find information on references and how properly citing references can help you to avoid plagiarism.

The purpose of referencing

The main reasons why accurate referencing is necessary:

  • To give credit to the originators of the sources that you use
  • To show that you build your work on relevant and reputable sources
  • To position your own work in relation to previous research
  • To support your reasoning and conclusions
  • To help the reader to locate the sources, check the information, and read more
  • To avoid plagiarism

APA style

Students in the Library and Information Science program are recommended to write their references according to the APA style (American Psychological Association).
When you refer according to APA, you have a source indication in parentheses in the running text with information about the author and year that points to a more detailed reference in the reference list at the end of your work.

APA does not usually use page references in the reference, but within the librarian program it is a rule that page references should always be included in the references in the running text before submissions. This is to facilitate the review of the text.

For further information on how to write references according to APA we recommend the Karolinska Institutet university library 7th edition (web guide).

You can also find more information on the APA Style website.

In The APA Style Blog you can find answers to tricky questions and read more about how to refer according to APA.

APA 7th edition

APA published its 7th edition in October 2019 .
Some changes and simplifications have taken place.

Here are some news that may affect you when referencing according to APA.
Remember to always consult with your teachers about which edition of APA to use when referring.

Reference in the running text:
More than three authors: The first time the reference is given, write the first author's last name and et al.
Example: (Taylor, Kotler, Johnson & Parker, 2018)  write (Taylor et al., 2018)
Et al. is Latin and means and others.

Only the publisher's name is stated, not the place of publication.

Bryman, A. (2016). Social research methods (5th ed.)Oxford Oxford university press.

Journal article:
Volume is indicated in italics but not the booklet number.
Example: Audunson, R., (2005). The public library as a meeting-place in a multicultural and digital context: The necessity of low-intensive meeting-places. Journal of Documentation, 61 (3), 429-441.

English titles are indicated in lowercase except for the first word (capital letter) or after a comma and for a sub-title.
Example: The public library as a meeting-place in a multicultural and digital context: The necessity of low-intensive meeting-places.

On the other hand, the first meaningful words are stated in a journal title or book title in capital letters.
Example: Library & Information Science Research.

Websites, Media (Video) with a specified author or where an authority or organization is behind the year and date of publication.
Tanner, L. (2019, October 20). APA 7th Edition Video . [Video]. Youtube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kt4HdjyvZBs

Do not write retrieved  in front of a link. Enter year and date in parentheses after the author's name / main page when it was produced - (2019, October 20)

Write only the URL, not the word Retrieved

Fichtelius, E., Persson, C. & Enarson, E. (2019). The treasure trove of democracy: proposal for a national strategy for libraries. National Library of Sweden, National Strategy for Libraries. http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:kb:publ-34

Web page with author:
Martin, C. M. (2016, December 30). Be kind to yourself: how self-compassion can improve your resiliency. Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/self-compassion-can-improve-your-resiliency/art-20267193

DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
DOI format does not need to be printed, write instead the entire link. It is placed last in the reference item.
Example doi: 10.1002 / asi.23411  becomes https://doi.org/10.1002/asi.23411

Case, D. & O’ Connor, L. (2016). What’s the use? Measuring the frequency of studies of information outcomes. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 67(3), 649–661. https://doi.org/10.1002/asi.23411

Referencing management systems – EndNote

EndNote - information and guides.

EnNote helps you to collect and organise references, insert text references, and create bibliographies in your paper.

Search lab


At the library's search lab you can get help with information searching.

Please note that there is no Search Lab hosted in the Library building at the moment due to the Corona virus outbreak.  However, it is possible to receive help via Zoom.

Paraphrasing and quoting

This is a film about how to refer to sources by paraphrasing and quoting.

By David Taylor (3:13 min.)


Literature tips - referencing and plagiarism