How to format your references using the Frontiers in Terrestrial Microbiology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Frontiers in Terrestrial Microbiology. 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
Stevenson, D. J. (2001). Mars’ core and magnetism. Nature 412, 214–219.
A journal article with 2 authors
Kissa, K., and Herbomel, P. (2010). Blood stem cells emerge from aortic endothelium by a novel type of cell transition. Nature 464, 112–115.
A journal article with 3 authors
Lee, S. H., Oe, T., and Blair, I. A. (2001). Vitamin C-induced decomposition of lipid hydroperoxides to endogenous genotoxins. Science 292, 2083–2086.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Wang, Y., Lv, M., Zhang, Y., Xiao, X., Jiang, T., Zhang, W., et al. (2014). Reconstruction of lactate utilization system in Pseudomonas putida KT2440: a novel biocatalyst for l-2-hydroxy-carboxylate production. Sci. Rep. 4, 6939.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Uribe, S. (2017). Frontier Road. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Watson, L. W., and Woods, C. S. eds. (2011). Go Where You Belong: Male Teachers as Cultural Workers in the Lives of Children, Families, and Communities. Rotterdam: SensePublishers.
A chapter in an edited book
Scott, J., Buytaert, N., Cannell, K., D’Souza, M., Gault, D., Gielis, D., et al. (2015). “Tabular Forms,” in Expert Oracle Application Express, eds. N. Buytaert, K. Cannell, M. D’Souza, D. Gault, D. Gielis, R. Hartman, et al. (Berkeley, CA: Apress), 145–214.

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 Frontiers in Terrestrial Microbiology.

Blog post
Davis, J. (2017). Researchers Find A Way To Reverse Drug Resistance In Tuberculosis. IFLScience. Available at: [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 (1971). Contract With Education, Training, and Research Sciences Corporation for Processing Applications To Serve in the VISTA Program. 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
Hey, S. E. (2015). Olivier Messiaen’s “Quartet for the End of Time”: A look at “The Abyss of the Birds” and socio-political issues, religion and performance practice in reference to the bible and the holocaust.

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. (2009). Old Pro Matsui Comes Through At the New Park. New York Times, B12.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Stevenson, 2001).
This sentence cites two references (Stevenson, 2001; Kissa and Herbomel, 2010).

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

  • Two authors: (Kissa and Herbomel, 2010)
  • Three or more authors: (Wang et al., 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleFrontiers in Terrestrial Microbiology
AbbreviationFront. Microbiol.
ISSN (online)1664-302X
Microbiology (medical)

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