How to format your references using the Practice citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Practice. 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
Wilbanks, John. 2013. “Licence Restrictions: A Fool’s Errand.” Nature 495 (7442): 440–441.
A journal article with 2 authors
Martienssen, R. A., and V. Colot. 2001. “DNA Methylation and Epigenetic Inheritance in Plants and Filamentous Fungi.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 293 (5532): 1070–1074.
A journal article with 3 authors
Yekta, Soraya, I-Hung Shih, and David P. Bartel. 2004. “MicroRNA-Directed Cleavage of HOXB8 MRNA.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 304 (5670): 594–596.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Seibold, G., C. Di Castro, M. Grilli, and J. Lorenzana. 2014. “Spin Excitations of Ferronematic Order in Underdoped Cuprate Superconductors.” Scientific Reports 4 (June): 5319.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Clark, Marie. 2006. Understanding Diabetes. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Rykov, V. V., N. Balakrishnan, and M. S. Nikulin, eds. 2010. Mathematical and Statistical Models and Methods in Reliability: Applications to Medicine, Finance, and Quality Control. Statistics for Industry and Technology. Boston, MA: Birkhäuser.
A chapter in an edited book
Wang, Xingyu, Shulin Liang, Wenxue Li, and Dianmai Zhou. 2012. “High Speed Train Bogie Wheel-Rail Relative Vibration with Bench Reconstruction Technology.” In Proceedings of the 1st International Workshop on High-Speed and Intercity Railways: Volume 1, edited by Yi-Qing Ni and Xiao-Wei Ye, 39–49. Lecture Notes in Electrical Engineering. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.

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 Practice.

Blog post
Andrews, Robin. 2017. “Democrat And Republican Lawmakers Rally Against Anti-Vaxxer Movement.” IFLScience. 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. 1998. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration: Powered Industrial Truck Operator Training. OGC-99-21. 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
Gramajo, German G. 2014. “Guidance Control of Small UAV with Energy and Maneuverability Limitations for a Search and Coverage Mission.” Doctoral dissertation, Long Beach, CA: California State University, Long Beach.

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
Koblin, John. 2017. “How Colbert Finally Got Real.” New York Times, April 9.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Wilbanks 2013).
This sentence cites two references (Wilbanks 2013; Martienssen and Colot 2001).

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

  • Two authors: (Martienssen and Colot 2001)
  • Three authors: (Yekta, Shih, and Bartel 2004)
  • 4 or more authors: (Seibold et al. 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titlePractice
AbbreviationPractice (Birm.)
ISSN (print)0950-3153
ISSN (online)1742-4909
ScopeSocial Sciences (miscellaneous)
Sociology and Political Science

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