How to format your references using the NursingPlus Open citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for NursingPlus Open. 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
Muggleton, S. H. (2006). 2020 computing: exceeding human limits. Nature, 440(7083), 409–410.
A journal article with 2 authors
Huber, C., & Wächtershäuser, G. (2006). alpha-Hydroxy and alpha-amino acids under possible Hadean, volcanic origin-of-life conditions. Science (New York, N.Y.), 314(5799), 630–632.
A journal article with 3 authors
Flower, T. P., Gribble, M., & Ridley, A. R. (2014). Deception by flexible alarm mimicry in an African bird. Science (New York, N.Y.), 344(6183), 513–516.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Acharya, A. P., Rafi, M., Woods, E. C., Gardner, A. B., & Murthy, N. (2014). Metabolic engineering of lactate dehydrogenase rescues mice from acidosis. Scientific Reports, 4, 5189.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Blicq, R. S., & Moretto, L. A. (2015). Writing Reports to Get Results. New York, USA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Malvey, D. (2014). mHealth: Transforming Healthcare. (D. J. Slovensky, Ed.). Boston, MA: Springer US.
A chapter in an edited book
Calzada, M. M. (2011). Ferroelectrics onto Substrates Prepared by Chemical Solution Deposition: From the Thin Film to the Self-Assembled Nano-sized Structures. In J. Ricote (Ed.), Multifunctional Polycrystalline Ferroelectric Materials: Processing and Properties (pp. 93–144). Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.

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 NursingPlus Open.

Blog post
Fang, J. (2014, August 19). Alpha Meerkats Can Benefit From Killing Their Grandpups. Retrieved October 30, 2018, from


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. (2006). Applying Agreed-Upon Procedures: Airport and Airway Trust Fund Excise Taxes (No. GAO-07-132R). 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
Zohourian, M. (2015). Supply Chain Decision Making Under Demand Uncertainty and the Use of Control Systems: A Correlational Study (Doctoral dissertation). Northcentral University, Scottsdale, AZ.

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
Branch, J. (2016, August 7). He Accosted a Runner. Now He’s Angry. New York Times, p. SP7.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Muggleton, 2006).
This sentence cites two references (Huber & Wächtershäuser, 2006; Muggleton, 2006).

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

  • Two authors: (Huber & Wächtershäuser, 2006)
  • Three authors: (Flower, Gribble, & Ridley, 2014)
  • 6 or more authors: (Acharya, Rafi, Woods, Gardner, & Murthy, 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleNursingPlus Open
AbbreviationNursingPlus Open
ISSN (print)2352-9008

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