How to format your references using the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 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
Wright, G. D. 2007. Biochemistry. A new target for antibiotic development. Science (New York, N.Y.) 315:1373–1374.
A journal article with 2 authors
Premkumar, L. S., and G. P. Ahern. 2000. Induction of vanilloid receptor channel activity by protein kinase C. Nature 408:985–990.
A journal article with 3 authors
Yamashita, T., T. Hige, and T. Takahashi. 2005. Vesicle endocytosis requires dynamin-dependent GTP hydrolysis at a fast CNS synapse. Science (New York, N.Y.) 307:124–127.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Tomeoka, K., K. Kiriyama, K. Nakamura, Y. Yamahana, and T. Sekine. 2003. Interplanetary dust from the explosive dispersal of hydrated asteroids by impacts. Nature 423:60–62.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Dos Santos, E. C., Jr, and E. R. Cabral da Silva. 2014. ADVANCED POWER ELECTRONICS CONVERTERS. John Wiley & Sons, Inc, Hoboken, NJ, pp.
An edited book
2013. Information Security Practice and Experience: 9th International Conference, ISPEC 2013, Lanzhou, China, May 12-14, 2013. Proceedings (R. H. Deng and T. Feng (eds.)). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, XIV, 388 p. 72 illus pp.
A chapter in an edited book
Auzel, F. 2005. Up-conversions in RE-doped Solids; pp. 266–319 in R. Hull, J. Parisi, R. M. Osgood, H. Warlimont, G. Liu, and B. Jacquier (eds.), Spectroscopic Properties of Rare Earths in Optical Materials., . Springer Series in Materials Science Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.

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 Vertebrate Paleontology.

Blog post
Andrew, E. 2015. Explainer: What Is Cognitive Behaviour Therapy? IFLScience. Available at Accessed October 30, 2018 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. 1976. Disapproval of Seattle, Washington, School District Applications for Emergency School Aid Funds. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, pp.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Ritter, D. 2008. The EU and conflict: Critically assessing the success of the ESDP and its impact in conflict areas. Doctoral dissertation, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC pp.

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
Williams, T. C. 2017. Radical Ambition. New York Times MM24.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Wright, 2007).
This sentence cites two references (Premkumar and Ahern, 2000; Wright, 2007).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Premkumar and Ahern, 2000)
  • Three or more authors: (Tomeoka et al., 2003)

About the journal

Full journal titleJournal of Vertebrate Paleontology
AbbreviationJ. Vertebr. Paleontol.
ISSN (print)0272-4634
ISSN (online)1937-2809

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