• 2-minute read
  • 24th January 2021

How to Cite a Patent in Vancouver Referencing

Now and then, you may need to cite a patent in your academic writing (e.g., if you are discussing a subject related to engineering). But how does this work? In this post, we explain how to cite a patent using Vancouver style referencing.

How to Cite a Patent in Vancouver Referencing

Vancouver referencing is another name for number–endnote referencing. This means you cite sources with a number in the text, which points to an endnote in the reference list. Readers can then check the reference list for source details.

Typically, sources are numbered in the order you cite them in the document. The first source you cite, then, will be cited with a “1” in the text, which will in turn point to the first entry in the reference list at the end of your document. For example:

We can see this component labeled in the patent (1).

You would then need to provide full source information in the accompanying reference list entry. And to cite the source again later in the same document, you would simply use the same number as on the first citation.

Patents in a Vancouver Reference List

In a Vancouver reference list, the basic format for a patent is:

(Citation Number) Author Surname(s) and Initial(s). Patent name or description. Patent number (Patent) Year of Issue.

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In practice, for example, the reference for a patent might look like this:

(1) Smith J, Ronaldo P, Ferry B. Plug-in “cite-o-matic” citation and reference generation device for students. US6324558B1 (Patent) 2010.

The key is providing enough detail to make sure your reader can find the patent. In this respect, it is very important to include the patent number if possible.

Expert Vancouver Proofreading

In the above, we have set out a simple way of citing a patent using Vancouver style referencing. However, Vancouver style can vary depending on the version you use.

This makes it important to check your style guide if you have one. If you are a student, this should be available with your course materials or online.

And to be sure your referencing is clear and consistent, you can ask our expert academic proofreaders. Sign up for our free trial service today to find out more.

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