How to format your references using the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine. 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
Smith C. Microscopy: Two microscopes are better than one. Nature. 2012;492(7428):293-297.
A journal article with 2 authors
Höfling S, Kavokin A. Solid-state physics: A historic experiment redesigned. Nature. 2014;514(7522):313-314.
A journal article with 3 authors
Meylan E, Tschopp J, Karin M. Intracellular pattern recognition receptors in the host response. Nature. 2006;442(7098):39-44.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Nakamura H, Shirakawa Y, Kitamura H, et al. Mechanism of wavelength conversion in polystyrene doped with benzoxanthene: emergence of a complex. Sci Rep. 2013;3:2502.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Shanmugam R, Chattamvelli R. Statistics for Scientists and Engineers. John Wiley & Sons, Inc; 2015.
An edited book
Fung EB, Bachrach LK, Sawyer AJ, eds. Bone Health Assessment in Pediatrics: Guidelines for Clinical Practice. 2nd ed. 2016. Springer International Publishing; 2016.
A chapter in an edited book
Acioli-Santos B, Vieira HEE, Lima CEP, Maia LC. The Molecular Ectomycorrhizal Fungus Essence in Association: A Review of Differentially Expressed Fungal Genes During Symbiosis Formation. In: Rai M, Varma A, eds. Diversity and Biotechnology of Ectomycorrhizae. Soil Biology. Springer; 2011:87-121.

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 American Board of Family Medicine.

Blog post
Andrews R. One In Five Genetics Studies Contain Mistakes Due To Microsoft Excel. 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. Federal Research: Assessment of the Financial Audit for SEMATECH’s Activities in 1989. U.S. Government Printing Office; 1991.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Abraham ED. A Mental Health Community Outreach and Education Program for Nigerian Immigrants: A Grant Writing Project. Doctoral dissertation. California State University, Long Beach; 2015.

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
Kelly M. Notes From the Underground: New Yorkers Share Their Subway Stories. New York Times. December 22, 2002:146.

In-text citations

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

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 the American Board of Family Medicine
AbbreviationJ. Am. Board Fam. Med.
ISSN (print)1557-2625
ISSN (online)1558-7118
ScopeFamily Practice
Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Other styles