How to format your references using the Earth and Planetary Science Letters citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Earth and Planetary Science Letters. 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
Eisenstein, M., 2013. Plant breeding: Discovery in a dry spell. Nature 501, S7-9.
A journal article with 2 authors
Cho, U.S., Xu, W., 2007. Crystal structure of a protein phosphatase 2A heterotrimeric holoenzyme. Nature 445, 53–57.
A journal article with 3 authors
Yang, R., Willett, S.D., Goren, L., 2015. In situ low-relief landscape formation as a result of river network disruption. Nature 520, 526–529.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Gu, Z., Kaul, M., Yan, B., Kridel, S.J., Cui, J., Strongin, A., Smith, J.W., Liddington, R.C., Lipton, S.A., 2002. S-nitrosylation of matrix metalloproteinases: signaling pathway to neuronal cell death. Science 297, 1186–1190.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Bill Huitt, W.M., 2016. Bioprocessing Piping and Equipment Design. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Wolff, B.G., Fleshman, J.W., Beck, D.E., Pemberton, J.H., Wexner, S.D., Church, J.M., Garcia-Aguilar, J., Roberts, P.L., Saclarides, T.J., Stamos, M.J. (Eds.), 2007. The ASCRS Textbook of Colon and Rectal Surgery. Springer, New York, NY.
A chapter in an edited book
Harel, D., Feldman, Y., 2008. Metodi algoritmici, in: Feldman, Y. (Ed.), Algoritmi: Lo Spirito Dell’informatica, Unitext. Springer, Milano, pp. 99–119.

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 Earth and Planetary Science Letters.

Blog post
Luntz, S., 2017. Bacterial Colonies Alternate Feeding Times To Survive Bad Times [WWW Document]. IFLScience. URL (accessed 10.30.18).


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. Federal Trust and Other Earmarked Funds: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions (No. GAO-01-199SP). U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Clayton-Clark, C., 2012. Academic performance strategies implemented by successful California superintendents in low-performing school districts (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
Murphy, M.J.O., 2014. Friday File. New York Times C31.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Eisenstein, 2013).
This sentence cites two references (Cho and Xu, 2007; Eisenstein, 2013).

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

  • Two authors: (Cho and Xu, 2007)
  • Three or more authors: (Gu et al., 2002)

About the journal

Full journal titleEarth and Planetary Science Letters
AbbreviationEarth Planet. Sci. Lett.
ISSN (print)0012-821X
ScopeEarth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
Geochemistry and Petrology
Space and Planetary Science

Other styles