How to format your references using the Computers & Education citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Computers & Education. 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
Cyranoski, D. (2004). Will creativity thrive in an island paradise? Nature, 429(6988), 220–221.
A journal article with 2 authors
Kopec, C., & Malinow, R. (2006). Neuroscience. Matters of size. Science (New York, N.Y.), 314(5805), 1554–1555.
A journal article with 3 authors
Yan, W., Smith, C., & Cheng, L. (2013). Expanded activity of dimer nucleases by combining ZFN and TALEN for genome editing. Scientific Reports, 3, 2376.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Navarre, W. W., Porwollik, S., Wang, Y., McClelland, M., Rosen, H., Libby, S. J., & Fang, F. C. (2006). Selective silencing of foreign DNA with low GC content by the H-NS protein in Salmonella. Science (New York, N.Y.), 313(5784), 236–238.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Palaveev, P. (2012). The Ensemble Practice. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Kihara, K. (Ed.). (2015). Gasless Single-Port RoboSurgeon Surgery in Urology (1st ed. 2015). Tokyo: Springer Japan.
A chapter in an edited book
Enström, R., & Benson, L. (2016). A Triangulated Appraisal of How Hybrid Activities Develop Students’ Negotiating Self-Confidence. In P. Daly, K. Reid, P. Buckley, & E. Doyle (Eds.), Innovative Business Education Design for 21st Century Learning (pp. 41–54). Cham: Springer International Publishing.

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 Computers & Education.

Blog post
Hale, T. (2016, September 15). Theft Of DNA Samples Raises Questions On Ownership Of Genetic Information. Retrieved October 30, 2018, from


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. (1984). The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Request for Radio Frequencies (No. RCED-84-158). 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
Horta, G. (2013). The potential of the Eurozone crisis to mobilize extreme right support in Spain, Portugal, and Italy (Doctoral dissertation). University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.

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
Crow, K. (2002, January 13). Safe, for Now. New York Times, p. 141.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Cyranoski, 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Cyranoski, 2004; Kopec & Malinow, 2006).

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

  • Two authors: (Kopec & Malinow, 2006)
  • Three authors: (Yan, Smith, & Cheng, 2013)
  • 6 or more authors: (Navarre et al., 2006)

About the journal

Full journal titleComputers & Education
AbbreviationComput. Educ.
ISSN (print)0360-1315
ScopeGeneral Computer Science

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