How to format your references using the Contemporary Sociology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Contemporary Sociology. 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
Fabbiano, Giuseppina. 2005. “Astronomy. The Hunt for Intermediate-Mass Black Holes.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 307(5709):533–34.
A journal article with 2 authors
Wiens, D. A., and N. O. Snider. 2001. “Repeating Deep Earthquakes: Evidence for Fault Reactivation at Great Depth.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 293(5534):1463–66.
A journal article with 3 authors
Scarola, V. W., K. Park, and J. K. Jain. 2000. “Cooper Instability of Composite Fermions.” Nature 406(6798):863–65.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Rocks, Oliver, Anna Peyker, Martin Kahms, Peter J. Verveer, Carolin Koerner, Maria Lumbierres, Jürgen Kuhlmann, Herbert Waldmann, Alfred Wittinghofer, and Philippe I. H. Bastiaens. 2005. “An Acylation Cycle Regulates Localization and Activity of Palmitoylated Ras Isoforms.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 307(5716):1746–52.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Lawless, Harry T. 2013. Quantitative Sensory Analysis. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons.
An edited book
Chee, Yeow Meng, Zhenbo Guo, San Ling, Fengjing Shao, Yuansheng Tang, Huaxiong Wang, and Chaoping Xing, eds. 2011. Coding and Cryptology: Third International Workshop, IWCC 2011, Qingdao, China, May 30-June 3, 2011. Proceedings. Vol. 6639. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Boulton, April M., and Keith D. Amberman. 2006. “How Ant Nests Increase Soil Biota Richness and Abundance: A Field Experiment.” Pp. 55–68 in Arthropod Diversity and Conservation, Topics in Biodiversity and Conservation, edited by D. L. Hawksworth and A. T. Bull. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.

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 Sociology.

Blog post
O`Callaghan, Jonathan. 2016. “NASA Is Not Changing The Signs Of The Zodiac (But Your Horoscope Is Still Meaningless).” IFLScience. Retrieved October 30, 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. 1986. ADP Acquisitions: Immigration and Naturalization Service Should Terminate Its Contract and Recompete. IMTEC-86-5. 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
Policarpio, Alyssa Mae. 2014. “Interventions for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Typically Developing Siblings, and Parents: A Systematic Review of the Literature.” Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, 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
Wagner, James. 2017. “Mets’ Slide Drags On As a Lead Vanishes.” New York Times, May 14, D3.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Fabbiano 2005).
This sentence cites two references (Fabbiano 2005; Wiens and Snider 2001).

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

  • Two authors: (Wiens and Snider 2001)
  • Three authors: (Scarola, Park, and Jain 2000)
  • 4 or more authors: (Rocks et al. 2005)

About the journal

Full journal titleContemporary Sociology
AbbreviationContemp. Sociol.
ISSN (print)0094-3061
ScopeSociology and Political Science

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