How to format your references using the ACM Transactions on Mathematical Software citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for ACM Transactions on Mathematical Software (TOMS). For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
C. Macilwain. 2000. Green light for plans to sell off US helium reserve. Nature 405, 6786 (June 2000), 496.
A journal article with 2 authors
Antje Boetius and Samantha Joye. 2009. Ecology. Thriving in salt. Science 324, 5934 (June 2009), 1523–1525.
A journal article with 3 authors
Simeng Yan, David A. Huse, and Steven R. White. 2011. Spin-liquid ground state of the S = 1/2 kagome Heisenberg antiferromagnet. Science 332, 6034 (June 2011), 1173–1176.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Wei Li, Samuel Lee, Minglin Ma, Soo Min Kim, Patrick Guye, James R. Pancoast, Daniel G. Anderson, Ron Weiss, Richard T. Lee, and Paula T. Hammond. 2013. Microbead-based biomimetic synthetic neighbors enhance survival and function of rat pancreatic β-cells. Sci. Rep. 3, (October 2013), 2863.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Sejin Park and Georges Guille-Escuret. 2017. Sociobiology vs Socioecology. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Timothy Leonard and Peter Willis (Eds.). 2008. Pedagogies of the Imagination: Mythopoetic Curriculum in Educational Practice. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht.
A chapter in an edited book
Chiu-Wei Chien, Si-Jing Chen, and Jun-Liang Chen. 2013. Designing “Hometown Feeling” Into Products. In Cross-Cultural Design. Methods, Practice, and Case Studies: 5th International Conference, CCD 2013, Held as Part of HCI International 2013, Las Vegas, NV, USA, July 21-26, 2013, Proceedings, Part I, P. L. Patrick Rau (ed.). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, 41–50.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for ACM Transactions on Mathematical Software.

Blog post
Stephen Luntz. 2014. Watch Hundreds Of Sharks In A Feeding Frenzy. IFLScience.


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. 1991. Land Management Systems: Extensive Cost Increases and Delays in BLM’s Major Data Base Project. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Marta Sanchez. 2012. For imagination and love – The permanence of the Mexican father who fathers at a distance. Doctoral dissertation. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Tejal Rao. 2017. Comfort Food. New York Times, BR13.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [2].
This sentence cites two references [3,4].
This sentence cites four references [3,5,7,8].

About the journal

Full journal titleACM Transactions on Mathematical Software
AbbreviationACM Trans. Math. Softw.
ISSN (print)0098-3500
ISSN (online)1557-7295

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