How to format your references using the Neural Systems & Circuits citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Neural Systems & Circuits. 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
1. Zeilinger A. QUANTUM COMPUTING: Quantum Entangled Bits Step Closer to IT. Science. 2000;289:405–6.
A journal article with 2 authors
1. Clarke A, Kapustin V. Hemispheric aerosol vertical profiles: anthropogenic impacts on optical depth and cloud nuclei. Science. 2010;329:1488–92.
A journal article with 3 authors
1. Santer BD, Wigley TML, Taylor KE. The reproducibility of observational estimates of surface and atmospheric temperature change. Science. 2011;334:1232–3.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
1. Nishikawa H, Iga M, Yamaguchi J, Saito K, Kataoka H, Suzuki Y, et al. Molecular basis of wing coloration in a Batesian mimic butterfly, Papilio polytes. Sci Rep. 2013;3:3184.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
1. “MAX” Maxfield C, Brown A. The Definitive Guide to How Computers Do Math. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; 2005.
An edited book
1. Shi P, editor. Natural Disasters in China. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer; 2016.
A chapter in an edited book
1. Charleer S, Klerkx J, Duval E, De Laet T, Verbert K. Creating Effective Learning Analytics Dashboards: Lessons Learnt. In: Verbert K, Sharples M, Klobučar T, editors. Adaptive and Adaptable Learning: 11th European Conference on Technology Enhanced Learning, EC-TEL 2016, Lyon, France, September 13-16, 2016, Proceedings. Cham: Springer International Publishing; 2016. p. 42–56.

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 Neural Systems & Circuits.

Blog post
1. Andrews R. What’s The Difference Between Male And Female Brains? IFLScience. 2015. Accessed 30 Oct 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
1. Government Accountability Office. Aviation Security: Progress Made in Systematic Planning to Guide Key Investment Decisions, but More Work Remains. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office; 2007.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
1. Curiel AR. A re-examination of the Meyers and Volbrecht motor equation for the identification of suspect effort. Doctoral dissertation. Pepperdine University; 2013.

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
1. Novick SM. When the Brew Is as Crucial as the Bean. New York Times. 2015;:LI8.

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 titleNeural Systems & Circuits
ISSN (print)2042-1001

Other styles