Umeå University

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On this page you will find some resources that can be useful when you are going to write a paper, report or thesis. What you find here is not a complete list of resources but examples of different types of useful resources. In other words, there are many more resources available than can be mentioned here, so do look for more on your own.


Templates for your papers are available on the page ”Essays and degree projects” (Sign in required). Usually information about how a paper should be formatted is given in instructions within each course where a written assignment occurs.

Umeå UB pages on search, write and study

On those pages you will find information about:

  • The scientific/scholarly article-format of writing.
  • A short introduction on to how to evaluate sources.
  • Helpful information about copyright and how to avoid plagiarism.
  • And a large section on referencing and citing, including links to tutorials  and short instructional videos on how ro use reference management tools such as EndNote.

Dictionaries and encyclopedias

When you read scholarly texts for your writing assignment you will come across words and terms which are not commonly used. To fully be able to take part of these texts, it is necessary to look up these words and find out what they mean.



Oxford English Dictionary and several other reference works from Oxford University Press (for UmU-students)
Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary (free version
via Encyclopedia Britannica, Academic edition (for UmU-students).

English – Swedish / Swedish – English

Nationalencyklopedien (for UmU students) and (free online) from Norstedts both have English – Swedish / Swedish – English dictionaries.


The Swedish Academy has a web page Svenska Akademiens Ordböcker where you can access  three different dictionaries: SAOL (a concise dictionary with 126 000 words), SO (a dictionary with full descriptions of 65 000 words) and SAOB (historical dictionary comprising information about 500 000 words). Here you can also find Svenska Akademins grammatik (SAG) – the standard grammar to the Swedish language.

This web site is at the moment only in Swedish.


The full list of reference works, that you, as a student, can use. Here you will find both general and subject specific encyclopedias, e.g. Encyclopædia Britannica, Gale Virtual Reference Library, Medical dictionaries and more – such as Scholarships / GlobalGrant.

Writing together, sharing documents and spellchecking

There are several possibilities for collaborating on, and sharing documents. On the Student web pages you find tips on suitable online tools for sharing, storing and editing documents. In Office 365 and GoogleApps there are several useful tools.

As a student at Umeå University you have access to software that are aids for those who needs support with reading or writing. See the Student web and use the link in the Sign in-box to access.

Study skills

Four short films on study skills by Björn Liljeqvist. Use the Playlist to see the content.

Academic Resource Centre (ARC) – Studieverkstad – at ”UB”

If you are a student at Umeå University you can come to The Academic Resource Centre to get help with, for exemple, your writing skills.

Academic Support Walk-in Service on most thursdays between 2 and 4 o’clock, during Fall and Spring semester. Writing coaches and Reference librarians are available to answer your questions.

See also ARC for more information and useful resources.

Reference management

Reference management is about keeping track of references to books, articles and other material you want to refer to. It is also about presenting the references correctly, in the text, as well as in the list of references. Reference management software will help you manage your references throughout the whole writing process, from information seeking to the publishing of your completed text. Read more about reference management in the Writing guide.

See also Umeå University Librarys web pages on Writing References.

Here, in the Writing guide, there is also a section on reference management tools.

Watch a film with short clips on how references work.
Referencing – how does it work


Sometimes you may need to translate parts of texts when you write your thesis. In academic texts there are usually many technical terms and specialized language, and if English is not your native language, it may be useful to translate the texts into your native language, to increase your understanding of what you are reading. Another example is if you want to translate a quote which was written in another language. In these cases, remember to always add to the reference that it is your own translation, for example (Stevens, 1998, my translation).

Keep in mind that you cannot fully trust the result from an automatic translation service! Therefore, always check the translations carefully before you use them in your text. On the web there are many different translation services, for example Microsoft translator or Google Translate.