How to format your references using the Journal of Medical Ethics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Journal of Medical Ethics. 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
Ralph DC. The electromotive force of MnAs nanoparticles. Nature 2011;474:E6.
A journal article with 2 authors
Lin CD, Chu W-C. Physics. Controlling atomic line shapes. Science 2013;340:694–5.
A journal article with 3 authors
Esper J, Cook ER, Schweingruber FH. Low-frequency signals in long tree-ring chronologies for reconstructing past temperature variability. Science 2002;295:2250–3.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Turner JL, Beck SC, Crosthwaite LP, et al. An extragalactic supernebula confined by gravity. Nature 2003;423:621–3.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Zinkin J. Rebuilding Trust in Banks. Chichester, UK: : John Wiley & Sons Ltd 2013.
An edited book
Borba MC. Humans-with-Media and the Reorganization of Mathematical Thinking: Information and Communication Technologies, Modeling, Visualization and Experimentation. Boston, MA: : Springer US 2005.
A chapter in an edited book
Cisneros LH, Ganguly S, Goldstein RE, et al. Individual to Collective Dynamics of Swimming Bacteria. In: Childress S, Hosoi A, Schultz WW, et al., eds. Natural Locomotion in Fluids and on Surfaces: Swimming, Flying, and Sliding. New York, NY: : Springer 2012. 73–82.

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 Medical Ethics.

Blog post
Andrew E. Leaked Publication Suggests BICEP2 Big Bang Discovery Was Wrong. IFLScience. 2015. (accessed 30 Oct 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. Illegal Alien Schoolchildren: Issues in Estimating State-by-State Costs. Washington, DC: : U.S. Government Printing Office 2004.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Cannon JR. Microwave-supported acid hydrolysis for proteomics. 2012.

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
Grynbaum MM. Wall Street Journal’s Editor in Chief Admonishes Reporters Over Trump Coverage. New York Times. 2017;:B7.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1,2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titleJournal of Medical Ethics
AbbreviationJ. Med. Ethics
ISSN (print)0306-6800
ISSN (online)1473-4257
ScopeArts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
Health Policy
Issues, ethics and legal aspects
Health(social science)

Other styles