How to format your references using the Biological Psychology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Biological Psychology. 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
Cyranoski, D. (2002). Satellite set to keep track of whales. Nature, 415(6870), 354.
A journal article with 2 authors
Larrick, R. P., & Soll, J. B. (2008). Economics. The MPG illusion. Science (New York, N.Y.), 320(5883), 1593–1594.
A journal article with 3 authors
Yu, H., Tang, H., & Xu, P. (2014). Green strategy from waste to value-added-chemical production: efficient biosynthesis of 6-hydroxy-3-succinoyl-pyridine by an engineered biocatalyst. Scientific Reports, 4, 5397.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Richman, D. D., Margolis, D. M., Delaney, M., Greene, W. C., Hazuda, D., & Pomerantz, R. J. (2009). The challenge of finding a cure for HIV infection. Science (New York, N.Y.), 323(5919), 1304–1307.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Meinert, C. L. (2012). Clinical Trials Dictionary. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Sroka, W. (2013). Management of Alliance Networks: Formation, Functionality, and Post Operational Strategies. (Š. Hittmár, Ed.). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Daszkowska-Golec, A. (2016). The Role of Abscisic Acid in Drought Stress: How ABA Helps Plants to Cope with Drought Stress. In M. A. Hossain, S. H. Wani, S. Bhattacharjee, D. J. Burritt, & L.-S. P. Tran (Eds.), Drought Stress Tolerance in Plants, Vol 2: Molecular and Genetic Perspectives (pp. 123–151). Cham: Springer International Publishing.

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 Psychology.

Blog post
Davis, J. (2016, August 22). Newly Discovered Species Of Bird In The Galápagos Islands Is Already Extinct. 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. (1989). Federal Research: Assessment of Small Business Innovation Research Programs (No. RCED-89-39). 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
Yoon, Y. (2010). Nano-tribology of discrete track recording media (Doctoral dissertation). University of California San Diego, La Jolla, 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
Schmitt, E. (2017, May 20). U.S. Says Its ISIS Fight Isn’t Raising Civilian Risks. New York Times, p. A5.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Cyranoski, 2002).
This sentence cites two references (Cyranoski, 2002; Larrick & Soll, 2008).

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

  • Two authors: (Larrick & Soll, 2008)
  • Three authors: (Yu, Tang, & Xu, 2014)
  • 6 or more authors: (Richman et al., 2009)

About the journal

Full journal titleBiological Psychology
AbbreviationBiol. Psychol.
ISSN (print)0301-0511
ScopeGeneral Neuroscience
Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

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