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
Hajime Akimoto. 2003. Global air quality and pollution. Science 302, 5651 (December 2003), 1716–1719.
A journal article with 2 authors
Ben D. Moore and William J. Foley. 2005. Tree use by koalas in a chemically complex landscape. Nature 435, 7041 (May 2005), 488–490.
A journal article with 3 authors
Andréa G. Grottoli, Lisa J. Rodrigues, and James E. Palardy. 2006. Heterotrophic plasticity and resilience in bleached corals. Nature 440, 7088 (April 2006), 1186–1189.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Veerabhadran Ramanathan, Muvva V. Ramana, Gregory Roberts, Dohyeong Kim, Craig Corrigan, Chul Chung, and David Winker. 2007. Warming trends in Asia amplified by brown cloud solar absorption. Nature 448, 7153 (August 2007), 575–578.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Martin Bojowald. 2012. The Universe: A View from Classical and Quantum Gravity. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, Germany.
An edited book
Henning S. Mortveit. 2008. An Introduction to Sequential Dynamical Systems. Springer US, Boston, MA.
A chapter in an edited book
Sven P. Nielsen, Per Roos, Henning Dahlgaard, Svend K. Olsen, Jussi Jernström, and Mats Eriksson. 2009. Thule Expedition 2003 - Studies on Radioactive Contamination and Particles. In Radioactive Particles in the Environment, Deborah H. Oughton and Valery Kashparov (eds.). Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht, 93–109.

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
Stephen Luntz. 2014. Awesome Video Shows Sponges “Breathing” Out Dye. 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. 1987. Reports Issued in October 1987. 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
Richard A. Rodman. 2010. Casual factors that contribute to gender bias in career choice among junior high school age females. Doctoral dissertation. California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA.

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
Michael Kelly. 1992. THE 1992 CAMPAIGN: The Democrats; Clinton Uses Farm Speech to Begin New Offensive. New York Times, A13.

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