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
Sarewitz, D.: Science agencies must bite innovation bullet, Nature, 471, 137, 2011.
A journal article with 2 authors
Mishra, S. K. and Hoon, M. A.: The cells and circuitry for itch responses in mice, Science, 340, 968–971, 2013.
A journal article with 3 authors
Poolman, B., Geertsma, E. R., and Slotboom, D.-J.: Biochemistry. A missing link in membrane protein evolution, Science, 315, 1229–1231, 2007.
A journal article with 100 or more authors
Fong, Y., Bender, L., Wang, W., and Strome, S.: Regulation of the different chromatin states of autosomes and X chromosomes in the germ line of C. elegans, Science, 296, 2235–2238, 2002.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Gupta, S. K.: Modern Hydrology and Sustainable Water Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK, 2010.
An edited book
Mikolajczak, C.: Lithium-Ion Batteries Hazard and Use Assessment, edited by: Kahn, M., White, K., and Long, R. T., Springer US, Boston, MA, XII, 115 p. 42 illus pp., 2011.
A chapter in an edited book
Hwang, Y.-S. and Kearney, P.: Study Two: Mindfulness Intervention for Children, in: A Mindfulness Intervention for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders: New Directions in Research and Practice, edited by: Kearney, P., Springer International Publishing, Cham, 93–125, 2015.

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
Pesky Beetle Destroys Coffee Crops Thanks to Caffeine-Detoxing Gut Microbes:, last access: 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: Status of the Mariner Jupiter/Saturn 1977 Project, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1977.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Adams, A. A.: A study of the attitudes and opinions of southwest Missouri educators regarding the value and outcome of the performance based teacher evaluation process, Doctoral dissertation, Lindenwood University, St. Charles, MO, 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
Apuzzo, M., Goldman, A., Schmidt, M. S., and Rosenberg, M.: Mueller Inquiry Unveils Charges and a Russia Link, New York Times, 30th October, A1, 2017.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Sarewitz, 2011).
This sentence cites two references (Sarewitz, 2011; Mishra and Hoon, 2013).

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

  • Two authors: (Mishra and Hoon, 2013)
  • Three or more authors: (Fong et al., 2002)

About the journal

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

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