How to format your references using the iScience citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for iScience. 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
Erdik, M., 2013. Geophysics. Earthquake risk in Turkey. Science 341, 724–725.
A journal article with 2 authors
Hogue, T.S., Pincetl, S., 2015. WATER CONSERVATION. Are you watering your lawn? Science 348, 1319–1320.
A journal article with 3 authors
Saikia, A., Frost, D.J., Rubie, D.C., 2008. Splitting of the 520-kilometer seismic discontinuity and chemical heterogeneity in the mantle. Science 319, 1515–1518.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Zhang, S.L., Liu, Y., Collins-McIntyre, L.J., Hesjedal, T., Zhang, J.Y., Wang, S.G., Yu, G.H., 2013. Extraordinary hall balance. Sci. Rep. 3, 2087.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Knudsen, S., 2005. Guide to Analysis of DNA Microarray Data. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Lin, C.Y.-Y., 2013. National Intellectual Capital and the Financial Crisis in Brazil, Russia, India, China, Korea, and South Africa, SpringerBriefs in Economics. Springer, New York, NY.
A chapter in an edited book
Bunin, G.R., Orjuela, M., 2015. Retinoblastoma: Epidemiologic Aspects, in: Singh, A.D., Murphree, A.L., Damato, B.E. (Eds.), Clinical Ophthalmic Oncology: Retinoblastoma. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp. 39–50.

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 iScience.

Blog post
Hamilton, K., 2017. Do You Really Want To Know What’s Lurking In Your Genome? [WWW Document]. IFLScience. URL (accessed 10.30.18).


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, 1992. NATO: A Changing Alliance Faces New Challenges (No. NSIAD-92-252). U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Chalmers, T.D., 2009. The social context of advertising: Authenticity, social identity, and reflected appraisals (Doctoral dissertation). University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.

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., 2014. An Alluring Summer Song, Echoed Through Eight World Cups. New York Times SP11.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Erdik, 2013).
This sentence cites two references (Erdik, 2013; Hogue and Pincetl, 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Hogue and Pincetl, 2015)
  • Three or more authors: (Zhang et al., 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleiScience
ISSN (print)2589-0042

Other styles