How to format your references using the Languages citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Languages. 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
Eisenstein, M. Personalized Medicine: Special Treatment. Nature 2014, 513, S8-9.
A journal article with 2 authors
Ollerton, J.; Coulthard, E. Paleontology. Evolution of Animal Pollination. Science 2009, 326, 808–809.
A journal article with 3 authors
Meyer zu Heringdorf, F.J.; Reuter, M.C.; Tromp, R.M. Growth Dynamics of Pentacene Thin Films. Nature 2001, 412, 517–520.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
He, J.; Zhou, P.; Jiao, N.; Ma, S.Y.; Zhang, K.W.; Wang, R.Z.; Sun, L.Z. Magnetic Exchange Coupling and Anisotropy of 3d Transition Metal Nanowires on Graphyne. Sci. Rep. 2014, 4, 4014.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Prazeres, D.M.F. Plasmid Biopharmaceuticals; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.: Hoboken, NJ, 2011; ISBN 9780470939918.
An edited book
Compatibility of Transactional Resolutions of Antitrust Proceedings with Due Process and Fundamental Rights & Online Exhaustion of IP Rights; Kilpatrick, B., Kobel, P., Këllezi, P., Eds.; LIDC Contributions on Antitrust Law, Intellectual Property and Unfair Competition; Springer International Publishing: Cham, 2016; ISBN 9783319271576.
A chapter in an edited book
Riviello, D.; Benco, S.; Crespi, F.L.; Ghittino, A.; Garello, R.; Perotti, A. Spectrum Sensing Algorithms for Cognitive TV White-Spaces Systems. In Cognitive Communication and Cooperative HetNet Coexistence: Selected Advances on Spectrum Sensing, Learning, and Security Approaches; Di Benedetto, M.-G., Bader, F., Eds.; Signals and Communication Technology; Springer International Publishing: Cham, 2014; pp. 71–90 ISBN 9783319014012.

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 Languages.

Blog post
Andrew, E. How Does Aging Affect Athletic Performance? Available online: (accessed on 30 October 2018).


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 Assessing Social Program Impact Evaluations: A Checklist Approach; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1978;

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Urquidi, A.J. Condolences to All of You: Late Eulogies of a Half-Complacent Birthday Boy. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach: Long Beach, CA, 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
Kishkovsky, S. Moscow Music Festival Marks Russian Easter. New York Times 2003, 53.

In-text citations

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

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 titleLanguages
ISSN (online)2226-471X

Other styles