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Guide to Article Search: Understanding article references

Understanding references

Reference information provides the name and authors of an article, the name of the journal in which it is published and when, as well as the page numbers of the article. You need reference information when writing your thesis or other work where you cite someone else's work. With the help of references you will be able to create citations and a bibliography.

It is important to understand references in order to find the information needed for citations. In addition to that references identify an article so that the reader will be able to search for it in the library, for example.

Note the difference between references and the information on availability. The information on availability lets you know which library or database has the item at hand.

The references regarding articles often contain following terms:

  • Authors: Name of the author or authors. The names of the authors are marked down differently in various referencing styles, e.g: surname, first letters of given names. The abbreviation et al. sometimes added after names of authors means that there are more authors to the item than mentioned in the reference. Articles are published in journals as well as edited books. An edited book consists of articles or chapters written by several authors.
  • Journal (magazine, publication): The name of the journal, magazine or publication that published the article.
  • Title: The title of an individual article. A journal or an edited book consists of individual articles. Do take note of the difference between the title of an article and the name of the journal or edited book that published the article.
  • Volume (vol.): Typically a volume consists of issues published within a year. The volume number often indicates the number of years the journal has been published. For instance, the issues of 2017 of a journal begun in 2010 would be part of the seventh volume. However, volumes do not always adhere to calendar years and in some journals there may be several volumes within a year.
  • Issue (number, no): Each publication within a volume is an issue. The issue number can be expressed in parentheses after the volume, e.g. Vol. 17 (42).
  • Pages (p., pp.): The paging of an article within an issue. The pages are given from the first page of the article to the last, e.g. pp. 133 - 137. The paging may run from one issue to the next throughout a volume.


Please check with your thesis advisor which citation style you should use in your thesis. The citation style defines how the information regarding sources is ordered in a bibliography as well as in citations.

Examples on reading references

Reference information can look different depending on the database. Here are some examples on how reference information is expressed in different databases:

EBSCOhost databases:

In Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 2018, volume 21, issue 2, pages 159–173.


Turku UAS Finna international article search:

In Research Policy, June 2016, volume 45, issue 5, pages 987–998.

How to cite articles

Several article databases have a automated citing tools for articles. You find this citing option along with the other information about the article, and it is often called Cite with several citation styles. 

For example in Sage Journals you find it on the right-hand side: 



When you click the Cite open choose a citation style from the drop-down menu and copy the citation or reference to clipboard:




About this guide

In this guide you can find information about how to search and use Finnish and international articles acquired by Turku UAS library.

User rights of e-resources

Turku UAS students and staff have the right to use electronic resources acquired by Turku UAS in studying, teaching and research. Students and staff have the responsibility to follow the user rights. User rights define the terms and conditions for printing, saving, presenting and distributing the e-resources. User rights for an individual resource can be found under the § button.

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