How to format your references using the Computer Assisted Language Learning citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Computer Assisted Language Learning. 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
Kavanaugh, M. P. (2004). Accessing a transporter structure. Nature, 431(7010), 752–753.
A journal article with 2 authors
Robertson, W. H., & Johnson, M. A. (2002). Chemistry. Caught in the act of dissolution. Science (New York, N.Y.), 298(5591), 69.
A journal article with 3 authors
Meylan, E., Tschopp, J., & Karin, M. (2006). Intracellular pattern recognition receptors in the host response. Nature, 442(7098), 39–44.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Kohara, K., Kitamura, A., Morishima, M., & Tsumoto, T. (2001). Activity-dependent transfer of brain-derived neurotrophic factor to postsynaptic neurons. Science (New York, N.Y.), 291(5512), 2419–2423.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Horton, W. (2011). E-Learning by Design. Pfeiffer.
An edited book
Dössel, O., & Schlegel, W. C. (Eds.). (2009). World Congress on Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering, September 7 - 12, 2009, Munich, Germany: Vol. 25/3 Radiation Protection and Dosimetry, Biological Effects of Radiation (Vol. 25/3). Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
White, A. P., Zhu, G., & Choi, J. (2013). Gain-Scheduling Control of Port-Fuel-Injection Processes. In G. Zhu & J. Choi (Eds.), Linear Parameter-Varying Control for Engineering Applications (pp. 39–78). 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 Computer Assisted Language Learning.

Blog post
Luntz, S. (2014, February 25). New Species Of Marsupial Has Sex Until It Dies. 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. (2001). School Vouchers: Publicly Funded Programs in Cleveland and Milwaukee (GAO-01-914). 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
Warner, K. S. (2014). The narrative structure of children’s books used in language therapy: An analysis [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
Sisario, B. (2017, October 27). How Did It Feel to Be on Their Own? New York Times, AR17.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Kavanaugh, 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Kavanaugh, 2004; Robertson & Johnson, 2002).

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

  • Two authors: (Robertson & Johnson, 2002)
  • Three authors: (Meylan et al., 2006)
  • 6 or more authors: (Kohara et al., 2001)

About the journal

Full journal titleComputer Assisted Language Learning
AbbreviationComput. Assist. Lang. Learn.
ISSN (print)0958-8221
ISSN (online)1744-3210
ScopeLanguage and Linguistics
Computer Science Applications
Linguistics and Language

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