How to format your references using the Instructional Science citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Instructional Science. 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
Brody, H. (2015). Beauty. Nature, 526(7572), S1.
A journal article with 2 authors
Allmann, B. P., & Shearer, P. M. (2007). A high-frequency secondary event during the 2004 Parkfield earthquake. Science (New York, N.Y.), 318(5854), 1279–1283.
A journal article with 3 authors
Do-Monte, F. H., Quiñones-Laracuente, K., & Quirk, G. J. (2015). A temporal shift in the circuits mediating retrieval of fear memory. Nature, 519(7544), 460–463.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Diaz, J., Ingall, E., Benitez-Nelson, C., Paterson, D., de Jonge, M. D., McNulty, I., & Brandes, J. A. (2008). Marine polyphosphate: a key player in geologic phosphorus sequestration. Science (New York, N.Y.), 320(5876), 652–655.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Wilson, D. A. (2014). Interpreting Land Records. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Lepri, S. (Ed.). (2016). Thermal Transport in Low Dimensions: From Statistical Physics to Nanoscale Heat Transfer (Vol. 921). Cham: Springer International Publishing.
A chapter in an edited book
Thakuriah, P., & Geers, D. G. (2013). Institutional and Policy Factors in ICT-Based Mobility Services. In D. G. Geers (Ed.), Transportation and Information: Trends in Technology and Policy (pp. 73–96). New York, NY: Springer.

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 Instructional Science.

Blog post
O`Callaghan, J. (2017, January 23). NASA Releases Gorgeous Images Of Earth From New Weather Satellite. IFLScience. IFLScience. Accessed 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. (1988). DP Insurance: A Management Tool (No. 137543). 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
Griess, J. O. (2010). A canine audience: The effect of Animal-Assisted Therapy on reading progress among students identified with learning disabilities (Doctoral dissertation). University of South Florida, Tampa, FL.

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
(nyt), S. K. (2002, September 5). World Briefing | Europe: Ukraine: Air-Show Officials Face Trial. New York Times, p. A6.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Brody 2015).
This sentence cites two references (Allmann and Shearer 2007; Brody 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Allmann and Shearer 2007)
  • Three or more authors: (Diaz et al. 2008)

About the journal

Full journal titleInstructional Science
AbbreviationInstr. Sci.
ISSN (print)0020-4277
ISSN (online)1573-1952
ScopeDevelopmental and Educational Psychology

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