How to format your references using the Ocean Science Discussions citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Ocean Science Discussions. 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
Check, E.: Biomedical funding remains flat, Nature, 439(7077), 644, 2006.
A journal article with 2 authors
Sesma, A. and Osbourn, A. E.: The rice leaf blast pathogen undergoes developmental processes typical of root-infecting fungi, Nature, 431(7008), 582–586, 2004.
A journal article with 3 authors
Lunshof, J. E., Church, G. M. and Prainsack, B.: Information access. Raw personal data: providing access, Science, 343(6169), 373–374, 2014.
A journal article with 100 or more authors
Liu, C., Li, S., Liu, T., Borjigin, J. and Lin, J. D.: Transcriptional coactivator PGC-1alpha integrates the mammalian clock and energy metabolism, Nature, 447(7143), 477–481, 2007.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Dorronsoro, B., Ruiz, P., Danoy, G., Pigné, Y. and Bouvry, P.: Evolutionary Algorithms for Mobile Ad Hoc Networks, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ., 2014.
An edited book
Brinkworth, M. and Weinert, F., Eds.: Evolution 2.0: Implications of Darwinism in Philosophy and the Social and Natural Sciences, Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg., 2012.
A chapter in an edited book
Stafford, S.: ‘Pester Them with Letters’: Using Darwin’s Correspondence in the Classroom, in Darwin-Inspired Learning, edited by C. J. Boulter, M. J. Reiss, and D. L. Sanders, pp. 35–44, SensePublishers, Rotterdam., 2015.

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 Ocean Science Discussions.

Blog post
Fang, J.: Sharks Keep Attacking Google’s Deep-Ocean Internet Cables, IFLScience [online] Available from: (Accessed 30 October 2018), 2014.


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: National Materials Research and Development Capability, 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
Shipe, R. L.: Creating productive ambiguity: A visual research narrative, Doctoral dissertation, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ., 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
Walsh, M. W. and de la MERCED, M. J.: Detroit Plan Is Said to Split Creditors Into 2 Groups, New York Times, 31st January, A18, 2014.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Check, 2006).
This sentence cites two references (Check, 2006; Sesma and Osbourn, 2004).

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

  • Two authors: (Sesma and Osbourn, 2004)
  • Three or more authors: (Liu et al., 2007)

About the journal

Full journal titleOcean Science Discussions
AbbreviationOcean Sci. Discuss.
ISSN (online)1812-0822

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