How to format your references using the Biosemiotics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Biosemiotics. 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
Althorpe, S. C. (2010). Chemistry. Setting the trap for reactive resonances. Science (New York, N.Y.), 327(5972), 1460–1461.
A journal article with 2 authors
Promislow, D. E. L., & Kaeberlein, M. (2014). Development. Chemical warfare in the battle of the sexes. Science (New York, N.Y.), 343(6170), 491–492.
A journal article with 3 authors
Rutberg, R. L., Hemming, S. R., & Goldstein, S. L. (2000). Reduced North Atlantic Deep Water flux to the glacial Southern Ocean inferred from neodymium isotope ratios. Nature, 405(6789), 935–938.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Novelle, M. G., Vázquez, M. J., Martinello, K. D., Sanchez-Garrido, M. A., Tena-Sempere, M., & Diéguez, C. (2014). Neonatal events, such as androgenization and postnatal overfeeding, modify the response to ghrelin. Scientific reports, 4, 4855.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Stoican, F., & Olaru, S. (2013). Set-theoretic Fault-tolerant Control in Multisensor Systems. Hoboken, NJ USA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Hacioglu, Ü., & Dincer, H. (Eds.). (2014). Managerial Issues in Finance and Banking: A Strategic Approach to Competitiveness. Cham: Springer International Publishing.
A chapter in an edited book
Usman Akram, M., Khan, A., Iqbal, K., & Butt, W. H. (2010). Retinal Images: Optic Disk Localization and Detection. In A. Campilho & M. Kamel (Eds.), Image Analysis and Recognition: 7th International Conference, ICIAR 2010, Póvoa de Varzin, Portugal, June 21-23, 2010, Proceedings, Part II (pp. 40–49). Berlin, Heidelberg: 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 Biosemiotics.

Blog post
Andrews, R. (2015, November 11). Engineers Have Invented A “Tricorder” That Could Detect Cancer. IFLScience. IFLScience. Accessed 30 October 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. (1987). ADP System: Patent Office’s Contract Renegotiation Behind Schedule (No. IMTEC-87-35). 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
Fonfa, S. L. (2008). The impact of increased security on the employment options and lives of people with severe disabilities (Doctoral dissertation). Capella University, Minneapolis, MN.

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
Saslow, L. (2006, August 12). On the Home Lawn, Where Alligators Roam. New York Times, p. LI2.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Althorpe 2010).
This sentence cites two references (Althorpe 2010; Promislow and Kaeberlein 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Promislow and Kaeberlein 2014)
  • Three or more authors: (Novelle et al. 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleBiosemiotics
ISSN (print)1875-1342
ISSN (online)1875-1350
ScopeLanguage and Linguistics
Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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