How to format your references using the Journal of the ACM citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Journal of the ACM (JACM). 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
G. Kenyon. 2001. Major UK cancer research charities to consider merger. Nature 409, 6816 (January 2001), 4.
A journal article with 2 authors
Warren C. Sanderson and Sergei Scherbov. 2005. Average remaining lifetimes can increase as human populations age. Nature 435, 7043 (June 2005), 811–813.
A journal article with 3 authors
Hung Yi Kristal Kaan, David D. Hackney, and Frank Kozielski. 2011. The structure of the kinesin-1 motor-tail complex reveals the mechanism of autoinhibition. Science 333, 6044 (August 2011), 883–885.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Samira Saadoun, Marios C. Papadopoulos, Mariko Hara-Chikuma, and A. S. Verkman. 2005. Impairment of angiogenesis and cell migration by targeted aquaporin-1 gene disruption. Nature 434, 7034 (April 2005), 786–792.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Gérard Blanchet and Bertrand Dupouy. 2012. Computer Architecture. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ USA.
An edited book
J. D. Pickard, N. Akalan, C. Di Rocco, V. V. Dolenc, J. Lobo Antunes, J. J. A. Mooij, J. Schramm, and M. Sindou (Eds.). 2007. Advances and Technical Standards in Neurosurgery. Springer, Vienna.
A chapter in an edited book
Nayab Batool Rizvi and Saeed Ahmad Nagra. 2014. Literature Review: Cardiovascular Disorders and Lipid Profile. In Minerals and Lipids Profiles in Cardiovascular Disorders in South Asia: Cu, Mg, Se, Zn and Lipid Serum Profiles for the Example of Patients in Pakistan, Saeed Ahmad Nagra (ed.). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, 45–66.

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 the ACM.

Blog post
Jonathan O`Callaghan. 2016. This Ice Shelf Breaking From The Inside Out In West Antarctica Is Not Good News. IFLScience. Retrieved October 30, 2018 from


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. 1993. Space Station: Information on National Security Applications and Cost. 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
Michael Everett Roettger. 2008. Three essays on social inequality and the U.S. criminal justice system. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.

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
Sophia Kishkovsky (nyt). 2004. World Briefing | Europe: Russia: Chechen Issues New Threat. New York Times, A6.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference [2].
This sentence cites two references [3,4].
This sentence cites four references [3,5,6,8].

About the journal

Full journal titleJournal of the ACM
AbbreviationJ. ACM
ISSN (print)0004-5411
ISSN (online)1557-735X
ScopeArtificial Intelligence
Hardware and Architecture
Information Systems
Control and Systems Engineering

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