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Wilfrid Laurier University Centre for Student Success
September 1, 2014
 
 
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Vancouver Style: A Revolution in Citations

Vancouver Style: A Revolution in Citations
by Chris Eaton

The writing tutors at the Laurier Writing Centre have recently been brought into the light about a new citation style: Vancouver. That’s right…a city with its own special citation style. When first informed of such a creature’s existence, our first reaction was that “they’re just making it up now.” This claim may be true, but that doesn’t mean that this style doesn’t have great benefits for the writing community.

Vancouver style ensures that students remain confused on the appropriate use of “et al.” and when to list the first six authors of a study in order to make certain that plagiarism is avoided. This ability to confuse is of the utmost importance in academic writing because, after all, it is university. If it isn’t confusing and stressful, then why do we pay ever-increasing tuition fees? Vancouver style is also reinforced by the inclusion of an abnormal amount of colons: and semi-colons. This is great news, especially considering a limited number of students know: how to use a colon: and the fact that; next to nobody; understands how to; properly; use a semi-colon. We wouldn’t want to make citing straightforward so that the mere acknowledgement of the source used is sufficient. That would degrade the quality of the writing and the validity of the paper’s thoughts. The omission of nuances such as semi-colons would also detract from the uniqueness of certain geographical locations, like Vancouver.

With this in mind, we have proposed to create a Laurier citation style to make life even more complicated for students. It is our vision that this style will become the standard citation format across the Laurier campus by the time that the new business building opens in 2025 (or whenever that is supposed to actually happen). Laurier style will; include a ridiculously, obnoxious: amount of various’ types; of punctuation: that will ensure the stress and confusion of professors and students alike. Stay tuned for the first edition of Laurier Manual of Bogus Style (LMBS), which will be available at the Laurier Bookstore come September 2014.

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