How to format your references using the Phase Transitions citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Phase Transitions. 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.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
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
Gisin N. Physics. Quantum nonlocality: how does nature do it? Science. 2009;326:1357–1358.
A journal article with 2 authors
Toggweiler JR, Russell J. Ocean circulation in a warming climate. Nature. 2008;451:286–288.
A journal article with 3 authors
Coumou D, Driesner T, Heinrich CA. The structure and dynamics of mid-ocean ridge hydrothermal systems. Science. 2008;321:1825–1828.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Sahai R, Morris M, Knapp GR, et al. A collimated, high-speed outflow from the dying star V Hydrae. Nature. 2003;426:261–264.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Pozzilli P, Lenzi A, Clarke BL, et al. Imaging in Endocrinology. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons Ltd; 2013.
An edited book
Chen Q. Secure Transaction Protocol Analysis: Models and Applications. Zhang C, Zhang S, editors. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer; 2008.
A chapter in an edited book
Han L, Hancock ER, Wilson RC. Entropy versus Heterogeneity for Graphs. In: Jiang X, Ferrer M, Torsello A, editors. Graph-Based Representations in Pattern Recognition: 8th IAPR-TC-15 International Workshop, GbRPR 2011, Münster, Germany, May 18-20, 2011. Proceedings. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer; 2011. p. 32–41.

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 Phase Transitions.

Blog post
Andrew E. Brilliant Gift Ideas For Science Fans [Internet]. IFLScience. IFLScience; 2014 [cited 2018 Oct 30]. Available 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. Computer Systems: Types and Sources of Department of State Lookout Records. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office; 1989. Report No.: IMTEC-89-71FS. .

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
De Ros KM. A content analysis of television ads: Does current practice maximize cognitive processing? [Doctoral dissertation]. [Bloomington, IN]: Indiana University; 2008.

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
Sophia Kishkovsky; Compiled by. Arts, Briefly; Paintings Returned to Russia. New York Times. 2005 Nov 24;E2.

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 titlePhase Transitions
AbbreviationPhase Transitions
ISSN (print)0141-1594
ISSN (online)1029-0338
ScopeGeneral Materials Science

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