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Reference Accuracy in Neonatal-Maternal Nursing Literature

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Purpose: To identify the frequency and types of reference errors in neonatal-maternal nursing literature. This study was an extension of earlier research on reference accuracy in pediatric and critical care nursing journals.

Design: A random sample was selected of references in three nursing journals: Neonatal Network: The Journal of Neonatal Nursing; Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing; and The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing. References were compared against original publications, and errors were classified as major or minor based on criteria used in earlier studies.

Results: Fifty-four of the 221 references had errors, for an overall error rate of 24.4 percent. Major errors were found in 21.3 percent of the references, and minor errors were calculated at 3.2 percent. Errors in the author's name were most common, followed by errors in titles of articles and books. The rates of reference errors in this study were lower than those reported previously in the nursing and medical literature.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2002

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