How to format your references using the International Journal of Play Therapy citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for International Journal of Play Therapy. 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
Dalton, R. (2000). US court slashes damages in polymerase-beta theft case. Nature, 407(6806), 824.
A journal article with 2 authors
Rinberg, D., & Davidowitz, H. (2000). Do cockroaches “know” about fluid dynamics? Nature, 405(6788), 756.
A journal article with 3 authors
Murakami, K. S., Masuda, S., & Darst, S. A. (2002). Structural basis of transcription initiation: RNA polymerase holoenzyme at 4 A resolution. Science (New York, N.Y.), 296(5571), 1280–1284.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Janisch, C., Wang, Y., Ma, D., Mehta, N., Elías, A. L., Perea-López, N., Terrones, M., Crespi, V., & Liu, Z. (2014). Extraordinary Second Harmonic Generation in tungsten disulfide monolayers. Scientific Reports, 4, 5530.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Iwacz, G., Jajszczyk, A., & Zajączkowski, M. (2008). Multimedia Broadcasting and Multicasting in Mobile Networks. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Fages, F., Rossi, F., & Soliman, S. (Eds.). (2008). Recent Advances in Constraints: 12th Annual ERCIM International Workshop on Constraint Solving and Constraint Logic Programming, CSCLP 2007 Rocquencourt, France, June 7-8, 2007 Revised Selected Papers (Vol. 5129). Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Zhao, F., & Dai, F. F. (2015). Design and Analysis of A Low Power QVCO with Capacitive-Coupling Technique. In F. F. Dai (Ed.), Low-Noise Low-Power Design for Phase-Locked Loops: Multi-Phase High-Performance Oscillators (pp. 67–94). Springer International Publishing.

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 International Journal of Play Therapy.

Blog post
Hale, T. (2016, May 27). These Are Each State’s Most Commonly Misspelled Word On Google. IFLScience; 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. (2006). Information Security: Coordination of Federal Cyber Security Research and Development (GAO-06-811). 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
Shellhouse, K. (2017). The Cretaceous-Paleogene Boundary Deposit in LaSalle Parish, Louisiana [Doctoral dissertation]. University of Louisiana.

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
Kenigsberg, B. (2017, August 31). The Layover. New York Times, C7.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Dalton, 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Dalton, 2000; Rinberg & Davidowitz, 2000).

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

  • Two authors: (Rinberg & Davidowitz, 2000)
  • Three authors: (Murakami et al., 2002)
  • 6 or more authors: (Janisch et al., 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleInternational Journal of Play Therapy
AbbreviationInt. J. Play Ther.
ISSN (print)1555-6824
ISSN (online)1939-0629
ScopeClinical Psychology
Complementary and Manual Therapy

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