How to format your references using the Cognitive Psychology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Cognitive 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
Zeilinger, A. (2000). QUANTUM COMPUTING: Quantum Entangled Bits Step Closer to IT. Science (New York, N.Y.), 289(5478), 405–406.
A journal article with 2 authors
Valbuzzi, A., & Yanofsky, C. (2001). Inhibition of the B. subtilis regulatory protein TRAP by the TRAP-inhibitory protein, AT. Science (New York, N.Y.), 293(5537), 2057–2059.
A journal article with 3 authors
Guo, F.-Q., Okamoto, M., & Crawford, N. M. (2003). Identification of a plant nitric oxide synthase gene involved in hormonal signaling. Science (New York, N.Y.), 302(5642), 100–103.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Möller, P., Madland, D. G., Sierk, A. J., & Iwamoto, A. (2001). Nuclear fission modes and fragment mass asymmetries in a five-dimensional deformation space. Nature, 409(6822), 785–790.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Maguire, L., & Smith, E. (2012). 30 Great Myths about Shakespeare. Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
An edited book
Syme, D. (2007). Expert F# (A. Granicz & A. Cisternino, Eds.). Apress.
A chapter in an edited book
Harley, N. (2008). Medical Management of Acute Renal Failure. In S. Blakeley (Ed.), Renal Failure and Replacement Therapies (pp. 26–32). 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 Psychology.

Blog post
Luntz, S. (2014, March 27). White Dwarf Stars Eat Their Planets. 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. (2004). Computer-Based Patient Records: Improved Planning and Project Management Are Critical to Achieving Two-Way VA-DOD Health Data Exchange (GAO-04-811T). 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
Hilker, B. (2010). Electric-field effects and interactions of dye-polymer systems [Doctoral dissertation]. University of South Florida.

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
Johnson, G. (2015, June 23). Our Existentially Lucky Numbers. New York Times, D5.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Zeilinger, 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Valbuzzi & Yanofsky, 2001; Zeilinger, 2000).

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

  • Two authors: (Valbuzzi & Yanofsky, 2001)
  • Three authors: (Guo et al., 2003)
  • 6 or more authors: (Möller et al., 2001)

About the journal

Full journal titleCognitive Psychology
AbbreviationCogn. Psychol.
ISSN (print)0010-0285
ScopeArtificial Intelligence
Developmental and Educational Psychology
Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
Linguistics and Language

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