How to format your references using the Biological Cybernetics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Biological Cybernetics. 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
Ohnaka M (2004) Geophysics. Rupture in the laboratory. Science 303:1788–1789
A journal article with 2 authors
Ghezzi I, Ruggles C (2007) Chankillo: a 2300-year-old solar observatory in coastal Peru. Science 315:1239–1243
A journal article with 3 authors
King J-R, Bekinschtein T, Dehaene S (2011) Comment on “Preserved feedforward but impaired top-down processes in the vegetative state.” Science 334:1203; author reply 1203
A journal article with 5 or more authors
Lee JG, McIlvain BJ, Lobb CJ, Hill WT 3rd (2013) Analogs of basic electronic circuit elements in a free-space atom chip. Sci Rep 3:1034

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Rimai DS (2016) Patent Engineering. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ
An edited book
Szymanski BK, Yener B (eds) (2005) Advances in Pervasive Computing and Networking. Springer US, Boston, MA
A chapter in an edited book
Missbach M, Stelzel J, Gardiner C, et al (2013) Change and Configuration Management. In: Stelzel J, Gardiner C, Anderson G, Tempes M (eds) SAP on the Cloud. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp 83–100

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 Biological Cybernetics.

Blog post
Davis J (2016) Dyslexic People Have Differences In Part Of The Brain Related To Speech Adaptation. In: IFLScience. Accessed 30 Oct 2018


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 (1994) [Comments on FAA Employee’s Claim for Real Estate Expenses]. 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
Hill L (2015) Unique forms of knowledge and curriculum in hip-hop pedagogy. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach

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
Eligon J, Apuzzo M (2015) Some Who Are Part of Problem in Ferguson Are Asked to Be Part of Solution. New York Times A16

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Ohnaka 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Ohnaka 2004; Ghezzi and Ruggles 2007).

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

  • Two authors: (Ghezzi and Ruggles 2007)
  • Three or more authors: (Lee et al. 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleBiological Cybernetics
AbbreviationBiol. Cybern.
ISSN (print)0340-1200
ISSN (online)1432-0770
General Computer Science

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