How to format your references using the Contemporary Family Therapy citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Contemporary Family Therapy. 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
Goodman, S. (2004). Getting mobile in Europe. Nature, 427(6977), 868–869.
A journal article with 2 authors
Virgin, H. W., & Walker, B. D. (2010). Immunology and the elusive AIDS vaccine. Nature, 464(7286), 224–231.
A journal article with 3 authors
Fu, A. C., Raizen, S. A., & Shavelson, R. J. (2009). Education. The nation’s report card: a vision of large-scale science assessment. Science (New York, N.Y.), 326(5960), 1637–1638.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Anderson, M. A., O’Shea, T. M., Burda, J. E., Ao, Y., Barlatey, S. L., Bernstein, A. M., et al. (2018). Required growth facilitators propel axon regeneration across complete spinal cord injury. Nature, 561(7723), 396–400.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Garton, A. F. (2008). Exploring Cognitive Development: The Child as Problem Solver. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
An edited book
Eriksson Lundström, J. S. Z., Wiberg, M., Hrastinski, S., Edenius, M., & Ågerfalk, P. J. (Eds.). (2013). Managing Open Innovation Technologies. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Kappler, M., Sachs, A., Keil, J., & Sachs, A. (2013). Determinants of Business Cycle Synchronisation. In M. Kappler & A. Sachs (Eds.), Business Cycle Synchronisation and Economic Integration: New Evidence from the EU (pp. 93–145). Heidelberg: Physica-Verlag HD.

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 Contemporary Family Therapy.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2014, November 12). US-China Deal Shows All That Effort to Tackle Climate Change Might Actually Be Worth It. IFLScience. IFLScience. Accessed 30 October 2018


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). Vehicle Safety: Technologies, Challenges, and Research and Development Expenditures for Advanced Air Bags (No. GAO-01-596). 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
Quick, T. D. (2012). Faith-based charter school success at education ground zero (Doctoral dissertation). Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA.

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
Herrman, J. (2017, July 18). What Will Service Work Look Like Under Amazon? New York Times, p. MM16.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Goodman 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Goodman 2004; Virgin and Walker 2010).

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

  • Two authors: (Virgin and Walker 2010)
  • Three or more authors: (Anderson et al. 2018)

About the journal

Full journal titleContemporary Family Therapy
AbbreviationContemp. Fam. Ther.
ISSN (print)0892-2764
ISSN (online)1573-3335
ScopeClinical Psychology
Social Psychology
Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
Cultural Studies
General Psychology

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