How to format your references using the Acta Psychologica citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Acta Psychologica. 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.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
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
Harden, N. (2005). Cell biology. Of grainy heads and broken skins. Science (New York, N.Y.), 308(5720), 364–365.
A journal article with 2 authors
Ostfeld, R. S., & Keesing, F. (2004). Ecology. Oh the locusts sang, then they dropped dead. Science (New York, N.Y.), 306(5701), 1488–1489.
A journal article with 3 authors
Gillespie, A. R., Montgomery, D. R., & Mushkin, A. (2005). Planetary science: are there active glaciers on Mars? Nature, 438(7069), E9-10; discussion E10.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Bernards, D. A., Flores-Torres, S., Abruña, H. D., & Malliaras, G. G. (2006). Observation of electroluminescence and photovoltaic response in ionic junctions. Science (New York, N.Y.), 313(5792), 1416–1419.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Kramer-Moore, D., & Moore, M. (2012). Destructive Myths in Family Therapy. Oxford, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.
An edited book
Heidergott, B. (Ed.). (2007). Max-Plus Linear Stochastic Systems and Perturbation Analysis (Vol. 16). Boston, MA: Springer US.
A chapter in an edited book
Huggenberger, P., Epting, J., Affolter, A., Dresmann, H., Kirchhofer, R., Meier, E., … Wiesmeier, S. (2011). Methods. In P. Huggenberger & J. Epting (Eds.), Urban Geology: Process-Oriented Concepts for Adaptive and Integrated Resource Management (pp. 53–93). Basel: Springer.

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 Acta Psychologica.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2015, August 16). Divers Find The Flying Spaghetti Monster Under The Ocean. Retrieved October 30, 2018, from


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. (1983). Status of FCC Efforts To Allocate Costs Between Telephone Companies’ Regulated and Unregulated Activities (No. RCED-83-235). Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Lowrance, T. L. (2017). Exploring the Four Modes of Organizational Forgetting in an Organization Post Acquisition (Doctoral dissertation). George Washington University, Washington, DC.

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
Pilon, M. (2012, June 8). Tae Kwon Do Issue Gets Britain’s Attention. New York Times, p. B14.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Harden, 2005).
This sentence cites two references (Harden, 2005; Ostfeld & Keesing, 2004).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Ostfeld & Keesing, 2004)
  • Three authors: (Gillespie, Montgomery, & Mushkin, 2005)
  • 6 or more authors: (Bernards, Flores-Torres, Abruña, & Malliaras, 2006)

About the journal

Full journal titleActa Psychologica
AbbreviationActa Psychol. (Amst.)
ISSN (print)0001-6918
ScopeArts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
General Medicine
Developmental and Educational Psychology
Experimental and Cognitive Psychology

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