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Vancouver referencing guide (Online): Tips for Referencing Images

Mae’r dudalen hon hefyd ar gael yn Gymraeg

Tips for referencing images

Sourcing images

Note: If you are citing an image you must check the attribution rights.

There are many image sites, which have quality images, many of which use creative commons attribution. You will find lots of examples on the Copyright library guide Images page. On the right side of the Copyright library guide Images you will see two boxes, one with the heading: Specialised image sites and one with the heading: Free image sites.


Labeling images, charts, tables etc.


In the text, label the image/chart using the word Figure or table with the word Table and allocate numbers sequentially, e.g. Table 1. 

Add a full-stop after the number.

Give the image/chart/table etc a title.

The image/chart/ table title can be paraphrased from the original listed. 

Note: In the list of references the title and table/figure number should be the same as the original source.


Figure number. Title. Reference number

Figure​ 2. Right anterior oblique view of female mosquito.[1]

Using your own drawing, poem or photograph

In the text label your work using the word Figure and allocate the numbers sequentially, e.g. Figure 1. Give the drawing, poem or photograph a meaningful title to describe the information presented. Do not give the reference a number as it is your own work.


Figure number. Title.

Figure​ 3. Photograph of sand dune erosion.

The only exception would be if the photograph is of a source of information e.g. of someone else’s work such as a poem, a work of art etc. Then you would need to allocate a reference number to the title you have given the image in-text, and add the original source of information to the reference list.


Constructing a table by paraphrasing written information

If you have constructed a table where you have paraphrased written information, then you can reference as you normally would when paraphrasing in-text by including a citation number for each piece of work.

Label your own table with the word Table and allocate the numbers sequentially, e.g. Table 1.

Give the table a title to describe the combined information.


Table number. Title. Reference number

Table 2. Exercise versus diet.[1,5]


Using multiple images to create a new image/collage

If you have adapted an image in anyway, e.g. added multiple images together to make a collage, then add [adapted] to the end of the each reference you have used to create the image in the list of references.

Reference list:


Hex N, Bartlett C, Wright D, Taylor M, Varley D. Estimating the current and future costs of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes in the UK, including direct health costs and indirect societal and productivity costs. Diabetic Medicine. 2012; 29:855–62. Table 1, Estimated UK prevalence of diabetes 2010 ⁄ 2011 and 2035 ⁄ 2036; [cited 2013 Jul 22]; p.858. Available from: [adapted]