How to format your references using the ACM Transactions on Sensor Networks citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for ACM Transactions on Sensor Networks (TOSN). 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
Yaakov Benenson. 2013. Engineering. Recombinatorial logic. Science 340, 6132 (May 2013), 554–555.
A journal article with 2 authors
Hyung-Bae Kwon and Bernardo L. Sabatini. 2011. Glutamate induces de novo growth of functional spines in developing cortex. Nature 474, 7349 (June 2011), 100–104.
A journal article with 3 authors
Nolwenn Jouvenet, Paul D. Bieniasz, and Sanford M. Simon. 2008. Imaging the biogenesis of individual HIV-1 virions in live cells. Nature 454, 7201 (July 2008), 236–240.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Andrew Rambaut, Oliver G. Pybus, Martha I. Nelson, Cecile Viboud, Jeffery K. Taubenberger, and Edward C. Holmes. 2008. The genomic and epidemiological dynamics of human influenza A virus. Nature 453, 7195 (May 2008), 615–619.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Pierre Lévy. 2013. The Semantic Sphere 1. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Lyubomir Vassilev and David Fry (Eds.). 2011. Small-Molecule Inhibitors of Protein-Protein Interactions. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
Giulio Ceppi. 2015. Understanding the Past While Planning the Future: Times and Ambitions About AdvanceDesign. In Advanced Design Cultures: Long-Term Perspective and Continuous Innovation, Manuela Celi (ed.). Springer International Publishing, Cham, 53–67.

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 Sensor Networks.

Blog post
Josh Davis. 2015. Scientists Make Female Fish That Produce Working Sperm. 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. 1980. First Look at Senior Executive Service Performance Awards/NASA. 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
Christina M. Ramos. 2017. Is this working? A study on measuring the effectiveness of efforts to diversify the theatre management field. California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA.

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
Chad Bray and James Kanter. 2017. E.U. Proposal May Shrink London’s Financial Footprint. New York Times, B2.

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 [2,4].
This sentence cites four references [2,5,6,8].

About the journal

Full journal titleACM Transactions on Sensor Networks
AbbreviationACM Trans. Sens. Netw.
ISSN (print)1550-4859
ISSN (online)1550-4867

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