How to format your references using the Physica Scripta citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Physica Scripta. 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
Dickson D 2000 Calls for international biotech panel Nature 403 821
A journal article with 2 authors
Myers M G Jr and Olson D P 2012 Central nervous system control of metabolism Nature 491 357–63
A journal article with 3 authors
Blake R E, Chang S J and Lepland A 2010 Phosphate oxygen isotopic evidence for a temperate and biologically active Archaean ocean Nature 464 1029–32
A journal article with 99 or more authors
Kawai H, Kanegae T, Christensen S, Kiyosue T, Sato Y, Imaizumi T, Kadota A and Wada M 2003 Responses of ferns to red light are mediated by an unconventional photoreceptor Nature 421 287–90

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Perry D E and Haluska M J 2016 Hiring Greatness (Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc)
An edited book
Berger T W 2008 Brain-Computer Interfaces: An International Assessment of Research and Development Trends ed J K Chapin, G A Gerhardt, D J McFarland, J C Principe, W V Soussou, D M Taylor and P A Tresco (Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands)
A chapter in an edited book
Mucha H-J 2014 Pairwise Data Clustering Accompanied by Validation and Visualisation German-Japanese Interchange of Data Analysis Results Studies in Classification, Data Analysis, and Knowledge Organization ed W Gaul, A Geyer-Schulz, Y Baba and A Okada (Cham: Springer International Publishing) pp 47–57

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 Physica Scripta.

Blog post
Andrew D 2017 11 Key Findings From One Of The Most Comprehensive Reports Ever On The Health Effects Of Marijuana IFLScience


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 2003 Information Technology: Departmental Leadership Crucial to Success of Investment Reforms at Interior (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
Naughton C C 2013 Assessing Appropriate Technology Handwashing Stations in Mali, West Africa Doctoral dissertation (Tampa, FL: University of South Florida)

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
Feeney K 2010 Local, Fresh and in Season New York Times NJ12

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 titlePhysica Scripta
AbbreviationPhys. Scr.
ISSN (print)0031-8949
ISSN (online)1402-4896
ScopeMathematical Physics
Condensed Matter Physics
Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

Other styles