How to format your references using the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine. 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.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
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
Germain RN: William E. Paul (1936-2015). Nature 526:324, 2015
A journal article with 2 authors
Meldrum DR, Holl MR: Tech.Sight. Microfluidics. Microscale bioanalytical systems. Science 297:1197–1198, 2002
A journal article with 3 authors
Grubb PJ, Coomes DA, Metcalfe DJ: Comment on “A brief history of seed size.” Science 310:783; author reply 783, 2005
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Long Z, Zhou Y, Chen G, Ge W, Wang J: C3N4-H5PMo10V2O40: a dual-catalysis system for reductant-free aerobic oxidation of benzene to phenol. Sci Rep 4:3651, 2014

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Shapiro IM: Energy Audits and Improvements for Commercial Buildings. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2016
An edited book
Sierksma G: Networks in Action: Text and Computer Exercises in Network Optimization. Ghosh D (ed), Boston, MA: Springer US, 2010
A chapter in an edited book
Milojević I: Transforming Violent Masculinities in Serbia and Beyond, in Simić O , Volčič Z , Philpot CR (eds): Peace Psychology in the Balkans: Dealing with a Violent Past While Building Peace. Boston, MA: Springer US, 2012, pp 57–73

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 Neurosurgery: Spine.

Blog post
Luntz S: Pythons And Boas Evolved In Parallel. IFLScience:2016 Available: Accessed 30 October 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: Highlights of a Forum: Financial Literacy: Strengthening Partnerships in Challenging Times. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 2012

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Chepete P: Modeling of the factors affecting mathematical achievement of Form 1 students in Botswana based on the 2003 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study. 2008

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
Ford Fessenden; Kate, Reporting LSC: Long Island Aid Comes at Westchester’s Expense. New York Times:14WC5, 2007

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in superscript:

This sentence cites one reference 2.
This sentence cites two references 2,4.
This sentence cites four references 2,6–8.

About the journal

Full journal titleJournal of Neurosurgery: Spine
AbbreviationJ. Neurosurg. Spine
ISSN (print)1547-5654
ISSN (online)1547-5646
ScopeGeneral Medicine

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