How to format your references using the Natural Language Semantics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Natural Language Semantics. 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
Bradshaw, Ralph A. 2013. Rita Levi-Montalcini (1909-2012). Nature 493: 306.
A journal article with 2 authors
Catlos, E. J., and S. S. Sorensen. 2003. Phengite-based chronology of K- and Ba-rich fluid flow in two paleosubduction zones. Science (New York, N.Y.) 299: 92–95.
A journal article with 3 authors
Weymouth, Alfred John, Thomas Hofmann, and Franz J. Giessibl. 2014. Quantifying molecular stiffness and interaction with lateral force microscopy. Science (New York, N.Y.) 343: 1120–1122.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Chen, Jingguang G., Richard M. Crooks, Lance C. Seefeldt, Kara L. Bren, R. Morris Bullock, Marcetta Y. Darensbourg, Patrick L. Holland, et al. 2018. Beyond fossil fuel-driven nitrogen transformations. Science (New York, N.Y.) 360.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Liu, Sheng, and Yong Liu. 2011. Modeling and Simulation for Microelectronic Packaging Assembly. Singapore: John Wiley & Sons (Asia) Pte Ltd.
An edited book
Botsiou, Konstantina E., and Antonis Klapsis, ed. 2011. The Konstantinos Karamanlis Institute for Democracy Yearbook 2011: The Global Economic Crisis and the Case of Greece. The Constantinos Karamanlis Institute for Democracy Yearbook Series. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Cypriani, Matteo, Philippe Canalda, and François Spies. 2012. OwlPS: A Self-calibrated Fingerprint-Based Wi-Fi Positioning System. In Evaluating AAL Systems Through Competitive Benchmarking. Indoor Localization and Tracking: International Competition, EvAAL 2011, Competition in Valencia, Spain, July 25-29, 2011, and Final Workshop in Lecce, Italy, September 26, 2011. Revised Selected Papers, ed. Stefano Chessa and Stefan Knauth, 36–51. Communications in Computer and Information Science. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.

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 Natural Language Semantics.

Blog post
Andrews, Robin. 2016. Stunning Satellite Images Reveal The Story Of Earth’s Surface Water. IFLScience. IFLScience. December 8.


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. 2001. Electronic Government: Selected Agency Plans for Implementing the Government Paperwork Elimination Act. GAO-01-861T. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Graves, Keith A. 2012. An Exploration of Organizational Commitment among Generation X Leaders. Doctoral dissertation, Phoenix, AZ: University of Phoenix.

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, John. 2016. Together Again, for Now: Hold Steady in Brooklyn. New York Times, December 2.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Bradshaw 2013).
This sentence cites two references (Catlos and Sorensen 2003; Bradshaw 2013).

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

  • Two authors: (Catlos and Sorensen 2003)
  • Three or more authors: (Chen et al. 2018)

About the journal

Full journal titleNatural Language Semantics
AbbreviationNat. Lang. Semant.
ISSN (print)0925-854X
ISSN (online)1572-865X
Linguistics and Language

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