How to format your references using the Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences. 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
Feinberg, A.P. 2007. Phenotypic plasticity and the epigenetics of human disease. Nature 447: 433–440.
A journal article with 2 authors
Mathews, J.A., and Tan, H. 2014. Economics: Manufacture renewables to build energy security. Nature 513: 166–168.
A journal article with 3 authors
Gugliotti, L.A., Feldheim, D.L., and Eaton, B.E. 2004. RNA-mediated metal-metal bond formation in the synthesis of hexagonal palladium nanoparticles. Science 304: 850–852.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Yuan, Y., Wang, X., Mei, B., Zhang, D., Tang, A., An, L., He, X., Jiang, J., and Liang, G. 2013. Labeling thiols on proteins, living cells, and tissues with enhanced emission induced by FRET. Sci. Rep. 3: 3523.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Kaisler, S.H. 2005. Software Paradigms Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
McMillan, D.B., Ed., 2007. Fish Histology: Female Reproductive Systems Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Krugman, S.D., and Lane, W.G. 2014. Fatal Child Abuse In: Korbin, J.E., and R.D. Krugman, Eds., Handbook of Child Maltreatment. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands, pp. 99–112.

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 Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences.

Blog post
Andrew, E. 2015. IFLScience. (Accessed 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 1977. Organizational Structure and Information Systems Used To Manage the Army’s Depot-Level Maintenance Programs 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
Byeon, G. 2014. More than words: A comparative study of Liszt’s Liebesträume and the songs from which they were transcribed. 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
Oestreich, J.R. 2017. Move Over, Bach. Handel’s Moving In. New York Times C5.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Feinberg, 2007).
This sentence cites two references (Feinberg, 2007; Mathews and Tan, 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Mathews and Tan, 2014)
  • Three or more authors: (Yuan et al., 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleCritical Reviews in Plant Sciences
AbbreviationCRC Crit. Rev. Plant Sci.
ISSN (print)0735-2689
ISSN (online)1549-7836
ScopePlant Science

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