How to format your references using the Functional Plant Biology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Functional Plant Biology. 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
Lawrence PA (2008) Retiring retirement. Nature 453, 588–590.
A journal article with 2 authors
Russell EV, Israeloff NE (2000) Direct observation of molecular cooperativity near the glass transition. Nature 408, 695–698.
A journal article with 3 authors
Solis RS, Haas J, Creamer W (2001) Dating Caral, a preceramic site in the Supe Valley on the central coast of Peru. Science (New York, NY) 292, 723–726.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Tijsterman M, Ketting RF, Okihara KL, Sijen T, Plasterk RHA (2002) RNA helicase MUT-14-dependent gene silencing triggered in C. elegans by short antisense RNAs. Science (New York, NY) 295, 694–697.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Kulinkovich OG (2015) ‘Cyclopropanes in Organic Synthesis.’ (John Wiley & Sons, Inc: Hoboken, NJ)
An edited book
Lember V, Kattel R, Kalvet T (Eds) (2014) ‘Public Procurement, Innovation and Policy: International Perspectives.’ (Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg)
A chapter in an edited book
Chen J, Chen D, Wang L, Lemon O (2010) An Advanced Learning Environment Aided by Recognition of Multi-modal Social Signals. ‘Advances in Web-Based Learning – ICWL 2010: 9th International Conference, Shanghai, China, December 8-10, 2010. Proceedings’. (Eds X Luo, M Spaniol, L Wang, Q Li, W Nejdl, W Zhang) Lecture Notes in Computer Science. pp. 41–51. (Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg)

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 Functional Plant Biology.

Blog post
Carpineti A (2015) A Solar Storm Reportedly Made Airplanes Disappear From Radars. IFLScience.


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 (1984) Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s Oversight of National Public Radio. U.S. Government Printing Office, AFMD-84-44. (Washington, DC)

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Grugan PK (2016) The mindfulness practice of clinicians: A systematic review. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, 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
Williams J (2016) This is Glam Rock. New York Times BR48.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Lawrence 2008).
This sentence cites two references (Russell and Israeloff 2000; Lawrence 2008).

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

  • Two authors: (Russell and Israeloff 2000)
  • Three or more authors: (Tijsterman et al. 2002)

About the journal

Full journal titleFunctional Plant Biology
AbbreviationFunct. Plant Biol.
ISSN (print)1445-4408
ISSN (online)1445-4416
ScopeAgronomy and Crop Science
Plant Science

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