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
Kun, Huang. 2015. “Evaluation: Moving Away from Metrics.” Nature 520 (7549): S18-20.
A journal article with 2 authors
Wallenfang, Matthew R., and Erika Matunis. 2003. “Developmental Biology. Orienting Stem Cells.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 301 (5639): 1490–1491.
A journal article with 3 authors
Dixson, Danielle L., David Abrego, and Mark E. Hay. 2014. “Reef Ecology. Chemically Mediated Behavior of Recruiting Corals and Fishes: A Tipping Point That May Limit Reef Recovery.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 345 (6199): 892–897.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Hughey, Jeffery R., Paul W. Gabrielson, Laurence Rohmer, Jacquie Tortolani, Mayra Silva, Kathy Ann Miller, Joel D. Young, Craig Martell, and Erik Ruediger. 2014. “Minimally Destructive Sampling of Type Specimens of Pyropia (Bangiales, Rhodophyta) Recovers Complete Plastid and Mitochondrial Genomes.” Scientific Reports 4 (June): 5113.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Kanel, Gary C. 2017. Pathology of Liver Diseases. Oxford, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Suzuki, Shuko. 2012. Biomaterials for Surgical Operation. Edited by Yoshito Ikada. Totowa, NJ: Humana Press.
A chapter in an edited book
Fukuda, Toshio, Fumihito Arai, and Masahiro Nakajima. 2013. “Micromanipulation System under Optical Microscope.” In Micro-Nanorobotic Manipulation Systems and Their Applications, edited by Fumihito Arai and Masahiro Nakajima, 107–136. Berlin, Heidelberg: 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 Journal of Biological Education.

Blog post
Andrew, Elise. 2015. “Amazing Drone Footage Of Sudan’s Mysterious & Forgotten Pyramids.” 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. 2012. Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education: Strategic Planning Needed to Better Manage Overlapping Programs across Multiple Agencies. GAO-12-108. 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
Warwick-Smith, Kathleen Marie. 2017. “Remembering Prudence: Tracking the Iconography of a Cardinal Virtue to Her Resurgence in Depth Psychology.” Doctoral dissertation, Carpinteria, CA: Pacifica Graduate Institute.

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
Longman, Jeré. 2015. “A Description as Enigmatic as How to Escape a Slump.” New York Times, December 19.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Kun 2015).
This sentence cites two references (Kun 2015; Wallenfang and Matunis 2003).

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

  • Two authors: (Wallenfang and Matunis 2003)
  • Three authors: (Dixson, Abrego, and Hay 2014)
  • 4 or more authors: (Hughey et al. 2014)

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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