How to format your references using the Biosystems Engineering citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Biosystems Engineering. 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
Onnela, J.-P. J. P. (2014). Physics. Flow of control in networks. Science (New York, N.Y.), 343(6177), 1325–1326.
A journal article with 2 authors
DeKosky, S. T., & Marek, K. (2003). Looking backward to move forward: early detection of neurodegenerative disorders. Science (New York, N.Y.), 302(5646), 830–834.
A journal article with 3 authors
Chakraborty, P., Gioia, G., & Kieffer, S. W. (2009). Volcanic mesocyclones. Nature, 458(7237), 497–500.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Burioni, R., Casartelli, M., di Volo, M., Livi, R., & Vezzani, A. (2014). Average synaptic activity and neural networks topology: a global inverse problem. Scientific Reports, 4, 4336.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Burkinshaw, S. M. (2016). Physico-chemical Aspects of Textile Coloration. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Cai, Z., Tong, H., Kang, Z., & Liu, Y. (Eds.). (2010). Computational Intelligence and Intelligent Systems: 5th International Symposium, ISICA 2010, Wuhan, China, October 22-24, 2010. Proceedings (Vol. 107). Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Mandal, P., Verma, N., Azad, G. K., Singh, V., Golla, U., & Tomar, R. S. (2014). Epigenetics: Role of Histone Proteases in Cellular Functions and Diseases. In N. Maulik & T. Karagiannis (Eds.), Molecular mechanisms and physiology of disease: Implications for Epigenetics and Health (pp. 113–126). 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 Biosystems Engineering.

Blog post
Fang, J. (2014, April 15). Ancient Martian Air Too Thin for Liquid Water. IFLScience; 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. (1989). Close Air Support: Comparison of Air Force and Marine Corps Requirements and Aircraft (NSIAD-89-218). 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
Andrews, A. (2013). Yoga as mental health treatment for cancer survivors: A grant proposal [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
(nyt), S. K. (2002, April 6). World Briefing | Asia: Russia: Journalist’s Body Found. New York Times, A10.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Onnela, 2014).
This sentence cites two references (DeKosky & Marek, 2003; Onnela, 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (DeKosky & Marek, 2003)
  • Three authors: (Chakraborty et al., 2009)
  • 6 or more authors: (Burioni et al., 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleBiosystems Engineering
AbbreviationBiosyst. Eng.
ISSN (print)1537-5110
ScopeAgronomy and Crop Science
Animal Science and Zoology
Food Science
Soil Science
Control and Systems Engineering

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