How to format your references using the BioSocieties citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for BioSocieties. 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
Dever, T.E. (2012) Molecular biology. A new start for protein synthesis. Science (New York, N.Y.) 336(6089), 1645–1646.
A journal article with 2 authors
Pimm, S.L. & Brown, J.H. (2004) Ecology. Domains of diversity. Science (New York, N.Y.) 304(5672), 831–833.
A journal article with 3 authors
Wearn, O.R., Reuman, D.C. & Ewers, R.M. (2012) Extinction debt and windows of conservation opportunity in the Brazilian Amazon. Science (New York, N.Y.) 337(6091), 228–232.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Cheng, H. et al. (2009) Ice age terminations. Science (New York, N.Y.) 326(5950), 248–252.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Krimpmann, A. (2015) Principles of Group Accounting under IFRS, Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Morales, P.J. (2013) Process Simulation and Parametric Modeling for Strategic Project Management D. Anderson (ed.), New York, NY: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
El Maliani, A.D. et al. (2012) Multi-model Approach for Multicomponent Texture Classification. In: A. Elmoataz et al. (eds.) Image and Signal Processing: 5th International Conference, ICISP 2012, Agadir, Morocco, June 28-30, 2012. Proceedings. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, pp. 36–44.

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 BioSocieties.

Blog post
Fang, J. (2014) Iguanas Have Bird-Like Lungs. 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 (1987) Representational Funds: State Department Expenditures at Selected Posts, 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
Olsen, C.M. (2009) A violinist in a non-classical world: Sugizo’s use of violin in popular music. Doctoral dissertation. Long Beach, CA: 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
St. John Kelly, E. (1995) The Life and Times Of a Young Rock Band. New York Times, 23 July:p. 131.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Dever 2012).
This sentence cites two references (Dever 2012; Pimm and Brown 2004).

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

  • Two authors: (Pimm and Brown 2004)
  • Three or more authors: (Cheng et al. 2009)

About the journal

Full journal titleBioSocieties
ISSN (print)1745-8552
ISSN (online)1745-8560
ScopeHealth Policy
Health(social science)

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