How to format your references using the Neurosurgical Focus citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Neurosurgical Focus. 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
Savage PE: Chemistry. Algae under pressure and in hot water. Science 338:1039–1040, 2012
A journal article with 2 authors
Eames M, Kortemme T: Cost-benefit tradeoffs in engineered lac operons. Science 336:911–915, 2012
A journal article with 3 authors
Nakatsuji S, Kiyohara N, Higo T: Large anomalous Hall effect in a non-collinear antiferromagnet at room temperature. Nature 527:212–215, 2015
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Chen LY, Parizi KB, Kosuge H, Milaninia KM, McConnell MV, Wong H-SP, et al: Mass fabrication and delivery of 3D multilayer μTags into living cells. Sci Rep 3:2295, 2013

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Lesca H, Lesca N: Strategic Decisions and Weak Signals. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 2014
An edited book
Xu F: Introduction to Skin Biothermomechanics and Thermal Pain. Lu T (ed), Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, 2011
A chapter in an edited book
Bozovic I: Possible Jahn–Teller Effect and Strong Electron–Phonon Coupling in Beryllium Hydride, in Bussmann-Holder A , Keller H (eds): High Tc Superconductors and Related Transition Metal Oxides: Special Contributions in Honor of K. Alex Müller on the Occasion of His 80th Birthday. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, 2007, pp 43–55

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 Neurosurgical Focus.

Blog post
Andrew E: Why Do Cats Bring Home Dead Animals? IFLScience:2014 Available: Accessed 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: Mass Transit: FTA Needs to Better Define and Assess Impact of Certain Policies on New Starts Program. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 2004

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
McKenzie NJ: African/Black psychology: A qualitative investigation of distinguished Black psychologists. 2012

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
Shpigel B: Return to Health Fuels Cruz, and Giants Fans. New York Times:SP10, 2016

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference 2.
This sentence cites two references 3,4.
This sentence cites four references 4,6–8.

About the journal

Full journal titleNeurosurgical Focus
AbbreviationNeurosurg. Focus
ISSN (online)1092-0684
ScopeGeneral Medicine
Clinical Neurology

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