Improvement of the accuracy of references in the Canadian Journal of Anaesthesia

Can J Anaesth. 1995 May;42(5 Pt 1):370-2. doi: 10.1007/BF03015478.


A previous study indicated that there were many citation errors in the Canadian Journal of Anaesthesia. After this report, editors of the Journal requested any contributors, whose papers were accepted for publication, to verify the accuracy of reference citation by including a photocopy of the first page of each reference. The present study examined if the accuracy of the reference list had improved. We compared citation errors between volumes of 1990 and 1994. One hundred references from each year's publication were randomly selected. After citations of nonjournal articles were excluded, the remaining 190 citations were carefully scrutinized. Authors' names, article title, journal title, volume number, page numbers, and year were examined in each selected reference. A reference was deemed correct if each element of the citation was identical to its source. Of the examined references, 48% and 22% contained one or more errors in 1990 and 1994, respectively. Errors in the title and author field of citation were most common in the either of the two years, occurring in about 70% of the references which contained some errors. Citation errors in Canadian Journal of Anaesthesia were considerably improved after the request to verify citation accuracy. Although this check-system probably contributes to the improvement of accuracy of reference citation, the rate of citation errors remains high. We believe that contributors' efforts will enhance the value of the journal.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesiology*
  • Bibliographies as Topic*
  • Canada
  • Periodicals as Topic / standards*
  • Publishing
  • Quality Control
  • Time Factors