How to format your references using the Fossil Record citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Fossil Record. 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
Crothers, D. M.: Biophysics. Fine tuning gene regulation, Science, 339(6121), 766–767, 2013.
A journal article with 2 authors
Li, G. and Luo, Z.-X.: A Cretaceous symmetrodont therian with some monotreme-like postcranial features, Nature, 439(7073), 195–200, 2006.
A journal article with 3 authors
Jasny, B. R., Kelner, K. L. and Pennisi, E.: Genetics of behavior. From genes to social behavior. Introduction, Science, 322(5903), 891, 2008.
A journal article with 100 or more authors
Sambrano, G. R., Weiss, E. J., Zheng, Y. W., Huang, W. and Coughlin, S. R.: Role of thrombin signalling in platelets in haemostasis and thrombosis, Nature, 413(6851), 74–78, 2001.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Chinesta, F., Cescotto, S., Cueto, E. and Lorong, P.: Natural Element Method for the Simulation of Structures and Processes, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ., 2013.
An edited book
Huang, W., Ed.: Handbook of Human Centric Visualization, Springer, New York, NY., 2014.
A chapter in an edited book
Faulkes, C. G., Arruda, M. F. and da Cruz, M. A. O. M.: Genetic Structure Within and Among Populations of the Common Marmoset, Callithrix jacchus: Implications for Cooperative Breeding, in The Smallest Anthropoids: The Marmoset/Callimico Radiation, edited by S. M. Ford, L. M. Porter, and L. C. Davis, pp. 103–117, Springer US, Boston, MA., 2009.

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 Fossil Record.

Blog post
Andrew, D.: Does An Anomaly In The Earth’s Magnetic Field Portend A Coming Pole Reversal?, IFLScience [online] Available from: (Accessed 30 October 2018), 2017.


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: Aviation Security: Posting Notices at Domestic Airports, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC., 1997.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Wenzel, A. B.: Learning the culture of teaching: A middle school perspective, Doctoral dissertation, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN., 2009.

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
Vecsey, G.: Paterno at the End: Far From the Coach We Thought We Knew, New York Times, 11th November, B18, 2011.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Crothers, 2013).
This sentence cites two references (Crothers, 2013; Li and Luo, 2006).

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

  • Two authors: (Li and Luo, 2006)
  • Three or more authors: (Sambrano et al., 2001)

About the journal

Full journal titleFossil Record
ISSN (print)2193-0066
ISSN (online)2193-0074

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