How to format your references using the Precambrian Research citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Precambrian Research. 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
Wand, A.J., 2015. Biophysics: Enzymes surf the heat wave. Nature 517, 149–150.
A journal article with 2 authors
Kane, C.L., Mele, E.J., 2006. Physics. A new spin on the insulating state. Science 314, 1692–1693.
A journal article with 3 authors
Ghosh, D., Segal, A., Voets, T., 2014. Distinct modes of perimembrane TRP channel turnover revealed by TIR-FRAP. Sci. Rep. 4, 7111.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Ohto, U., Fukase, K., Miyake, K., Satow, Y., 2007. Crystal structures of human MD-2 and its complex with antiendotoxic lipid IVa. Science 316, 1632–1634.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Russell, D.L., 2006. Practical Wastewater Treatment. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Albers, S., Marchetti-Spaccamela, A., Matias, Y., Nikoletseas, S., Thomas, W. (Eds.), 2009. Automata, Languages and Programming: 36th Internatilonal Collogquium, ICALP 2009, Rhodes, greece, July 5-12, 2009, Proceedings, Part II, Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
Bourgain, J., Voiculescu, D.-V., 2016. The Essential Centre of the mod a Diagonalization Ideal Commutant of an n-tuple of Commuting Hermitian Operators, in: Alpay, D., Cipriani, F., Colombo, F., Guido, D., Sabadini, I., Sauvageot, J.-L. (Eds.), Noncommutative Analysis, Operator Theory and Applications, Operator Theory: Advances and Applications. Springer International Publishing, Cham, pp. 77–80.

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 Precambrian Research.

Blog post
Andrew, E., 2015. Scientists Set New Record for World’s Coolest Molecule [WWW Document]. IFLScience. URL (accessed 10.30.18).


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, 2010. Technology Assessment: Explosives Detection Technologies to Protect Passenger Rail (No. GAO-10-898). U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Beyer, P.D., 2010. Authentic Leadership in-extremis: A study of combat leadership (Doctoral dissertation). Capella University, Minneapolis, MN.

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
Kelly, C., 2013. Over 50, and Under No Illusions. New York Times BU1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Wand, 2015).
This sentence cites two references (Kane and Mele, 2006; Wand, 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Kane and Mele, 2006)
  • Three or more authors: (Ohto et al., 2007)

About the journal

Full journal titlePrecambrian Research
AbbreviationPrecambrian Res.
ISSN (print)0301-9268
ScopeGeochemistry and Petrology

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