How to format your references using the IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems. 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
N. Rahman, “Realizing the promise of cancer predisposition genes,” Nature, vol. 505, no. 7483, pp. 302–308, Jan. 2014.
A journal article with 2 authors
G. Kossinets and D. J. Watts, “Empirical analysis of an evolving social network,” Science, vol. 311, no. 5757, pp. 88–90, Jan. 2006.
A journal article with 3 authors
K. Okita, T. Ichisaka, and S. Yamanaka, “Generation of germline-competent induced pluripotent stem cells,” Nature, vol. 448, no. 7151, pp. 313–317, Jul. 2007.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
G. E. J. Poinern, R. K. Brundavanam, X. Thi Le, P. K. Nicholls, M. A. Cake, and D. Fawcett, “The synthesis, characterisation and in vivo study of a bioceramic for potential tissue regeneration applications,” Sci. Rep., vol. 4, p. 6235, Aug. 2014.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
R. E. Wubbolding, Reality Therapy and Self-Evaluation. Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association, 2017.
An edited book
H. Hildmann, Middle Ear Surgery. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, 2006.
A chapter in an edited book
P. Tabbush, P. Frederiksen, and D. Edwards, “Impact Assessment in the European Commission in relation to Multifunctional Land Use,” in Sustainability Impact Assessment of Land Use Changes, K. Helming, M. Pérez-Soba, and P. Tabbush, Eds. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, 2008, pp. 35–54.

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 IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems.

Blog post
B. Taub, “Snails Can Make Decisions Using Just Two Brain Cells,” IFLScience, Jun. 07, 2016.


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, “Environmental Satellites: Focused Attention Needed to Mitigate Program Risks,” U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, GAO-12-841T, Jun. 2012.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
H. Dinh, “A study of cell-based genetic algorithms with applications to neural networks,” Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA, 2013.

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
G. Vecsey, “Success and Scandal Can Leave Everyone Weary,” New York Times, p. SP7, May 29, 2011.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1], [2].
This sentence cites four references [1]–[4].

About the journal

Full journal titleIEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems
AbbreviationIEEE Trans. Neural Netw. Learn. Syst.
ISSN (print)2162-237X
ScopeArtificial Intelligence
Computer Networks and Communications
Computer Science Applications

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