How to format your references using the Journal of Biological Education citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Journal of Biological Education. 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
Grier, David G. 2003. “A Revolution in Optical Manipulation.” Nature 424 (6950): 810–816.
A journal article with 2 authors
Conway, Tim M., and Seth G. John. 2014. “Quantification of Dissolved Iron Sources to the North Atlantic Ocean.” Nature 511 (7508): 212–215.
A journal article with 3 authors
Alexander, R. B., R. A. Smith, and G. E. Schwarz. 2000. “Effect of Stream Channel Size on the Delivery of Nitrogen to the Gulf of Mexico.” Nature 403 (6771): 758–761.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Haj, Fawaz G., Peter J. Verveer, Anthony Squire, Benjamin G. Neel, and Philippe I. H. Bastiaens. 2002. “Imaging Sites of Receptor Dephosphorylation by PTP1B on the Surface of the Endoplasmic Reticulum.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 295 (5560): 1708–1711.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Homer, Sidney, and Martin L. Leibowitz. 2013. Inside the Yield Book. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Yamamoto, Sakae, ed. 2016. Human Interface and the Management of Information: Applications and Services: 18th International Conference, HCI International 2016 Toronto, Canada, July 17-22, 2016. Proceedings, Part II. Vol. 9735. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Cham: Springer International Publishing.
A chapter in an edited book
Marginson, Simon. 2013. “Nation-States, Educational Traditions and the WCU Project.” In Institutionalization of World-Class University in Global Competition, edited by Jung Cheol Shin and Barbara M. Kehm, 59–77. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.

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 Journal of Biological Education.

Blog post
Hale, Tom. 2017. “Pod Escapes From Facility In Town Infamous For Bloody Dolphin Slaughters.” 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. 1977. Reevaluation Needed of Educational Assistance for Institutionalized Neglected or Delinquent Children. HRD-78-11. 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
Diggs, Betty Jean. 2017. “African American Online Doctor of Management Students’ Perceptions of Dissertation Writing and Support: Narrative Inquiry.” Doctoral dissertation, Phoenix, AZ: University of Phoenix.

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
Cunningham, John. 2017. “Spotting Celebrities on His Lunch Break.” New York Times, June 8.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Grier 2003).
This sentence cites two references (Grier 2003; Conway and John 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Conway and John 2014)
  • Three authors: (Alexander, Smith, and Schwarz 2000)
  • 4 or more authors: (Haj et al. 2002)

About the journal

Full journal titleJournal of Biological Education
AbbreviationJ. Biol. Educ.
ISSN (print)0021-9266
ISSN (online)2157-6009
ScopeGeneral Agricultural and Biological Sciences

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