How to format your references using the Cognitive Neuroscience citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Cognitive Neuroscience. 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
Joyce, G. F. (2002). The antiquity of RNA-based evolution. Nature, 418(6894), 214–221.
A journal article with 2 authors
Beasley, A. J., & Schreier, E. J. (2012). Astronomy: The United States must rejoin the SKA. Nature, 489(7416), 363.
A journal article with 3 authors
Healy, D., Jones, R. R., & Holdsworth, R. E. (2006). Three-dimensional brittle shear fracturing by tensile crack interaction. Nature, 439(7072), 64–67.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Zhang, X., Mi, W., Wang, X., Cheng, Y., & Schwingenschlögl, U. (2014). The interface between Gd and monolayer MoS2: a first-principles study. Scientific Reports, 4, 7368.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Jäger, W., & Marzahn, G. (2010). Mauerwerk. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.
An edited book
Brézin, E. (2016). Random Matrix Theory with an External Source (S. Hikami, Ed.; Vol. 19). Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Behar, S., Estrada, J., Hernández, V., & León, D. (2005). Smoothing of Polygonal Chains for 2D Shape Representation Using a G 2-Continuous Cubic A-Spline. In A. Sanfeliu & M. L. Cortés (Eds.), Progress in Pattern Recognition, Image Analysis and Applications: 10th Iberoamerican Congress on Pattern Recognition, CIARP 2005, Havana, Cuba, November 15-18, 2005. Proceedings (pp. 42–50). 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 Cognitive Neuroscience.

Blog post
Davis, J. (2017, March 28). Full 28-Day Menstrual Cycle Replicated In A Dish For The First Time. 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. (2002). Department of Education: Guaranteed Student Loan Program Vulnerabilities (GAO-03-268R). 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
Cao, Y. (2006). Morphological and Functional Characterization of the Neurotransmitter GABA in Adult Rat Taste Buds [Doctoral dissertation]. Ohio State University.

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
Williams, J. (2017, September 22). Of God and War. New York Times, BR6.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Joyce, 2002).
This sentence cites two references (Beasley & Schreier, 2012; Joyce, 2002).

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

  • Two authors: (Beasley & Schreier, 2012)
  • Three authors: (Healy et al., 2006)
  • 6 or more authors: (Zhang et al., 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleCognitive Neuroscience
AbbreviationCogn. Neurosci.
ISSN (print)1758-8928
ISSN (online)1758-8936
ScopeCognitive Neuroscience

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