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
Barry J. Dickson. 2008. Wired for sex: the neurobiology of Drosophila mating decisions. Science 322, 5903 (November 2008), 904–909.
A journal article with 2 authors
Andy Hector and Rowan Hooper. 2002. Ecology. Darwin and the first ecological experiment. Science 295, 5555 (January 2002), 639–640.
A journal article with 3 authors
Malika Betrouche, Mustapha Maamache, and Jeong Ryeol Choi. 2013. Novel characteristics of energy spectrum for 3D Dirac oscillator analyzed via Lorentz covariant deformed algebra. Sci. Rep. 3, (November 2013), 3221.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Jun Liu, Dianne W. Taylor, Elena B. Krementsova, Kathleen M. Trybus, and Kenneth A. Taylor. 2006. Three-dimensional structure of the myosin V inhibited state by cryoelectron tomography. Nature 442, 7099 (July 2006), 208–211.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Elaine Knuth. 2011. Trading Between the Lines. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Sven Casteleyn. 2009. Engineering Web Applications. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
Harald Fecher, Martin Leucker, and Verena Wolf. 2006. Don’t Know in Probabilistic Systems. In Model Checking Software: 13th International SPIN Workshop, Vienna, Austria, March 30 - April 1, 2006. Proceedings, Antti Valmari (ed.). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, 71–88.

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
Robin Andrews. 2016. Men Cite Themselves Way More Than Women In Studies. 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. Tax System Modernization: Attention to Critical Issues Can Bring Success. 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
Staci Janelle Ray. 2017. Departmentalized Classroom Environments Versus Traditional Classroom Environments in Second Through Fourth Grades: A Quantitative Analysis. Doctoral dissertation. Lindenwood University, St. Charles, MO.

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
James Gorman. 2016. Judge Allows Departure of 7 Chimps to England. New York Times, A12.

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 [4–6,8].

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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