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
Fortunat Joos. 2015. Global warming: Growing feedback from ocean carbon to climate. Nature 522, 7556 (June 2015), 295–296.
A journal article with 2 authors
Rachel Sennett and Michael Rendl. 2015. Developmental biology. A scar is born: origins of fibrotic skin tissue. Science 348, 6232 (April 2015), 284–285.
A journal article with 3 authors
Vicent Pelechano, Wu Wei, and Lars M. Steinmetz. 2013. Extensive transcriptional heterogeneity revealed by isoform profiling. Nature 497, 7447 (May 2013), 127–131.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
S. Xiao, S. Ellwood, O. Calis, E. Patrick, T. Li, M. Coleman, and J. G. Turner. 2001. Broad-spectrum mildew resistance in Arabidopsis thaliana mediated by RPW8. Science 291, 5501 (January 2001), 118–120.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Christian Lalanne. 2014. Sinusoidal Vibration. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK.
An edited book
Maria Barysz and Yasuyuki Ishikawa (Eds.). 2010. Relativistic Methods for Chemists. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht.
A chapter in an edited book
Jae-Hee Ahn. 2014. Analysis of Women Doctorates Entering the Labor Market in Republic of Korea. In Korean Education in Changing Economic and Demographic Contexts, Hyunjoon Park and Kyung-Keun Kim (eds.). Springer, Singapore, 59–76.

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
Tom Hale. 2016. Forty Dead Tiger Cubs Found In Thai Tiger Temple’s Freezer. 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. 1998. Year 2000 Computing Crisis: Business Continuity and Contingency Planning (Supersedes AIMD-10.1.19). 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
Jessica Cisewski. 2012. Generalized fiducial inference for mixed linear models. 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
John Pomfret. 2017. Isolating China doesn’t work. New York Times, 0.

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 [2,4].
This sentence cites four references [2,5,6,8].

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

Other styles