How to format your references using the Precision Engineering citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Precision Engineering. 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
Smaglik P. The best of both worlds. Seattle. Nature 2002;417:4–5.
A journal article with 2 authors
Tozer S, Morin X. Neuroscience. Young neurons sever ties to the parental niche. Science 2014;343:146–7.
A journal article with 3 authors
Raff MC, Whitmore AV, Finn JT. Axonal self-destruction and neurodegeneration. Science 2002;296:868–71.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Yamane Y, Hemmatiyan S, Ieda J, Maekawa S, Sinova J. Spinmotive force due to motion of magnetic bubble arrays driven by magnetic field gradient. Sci Rep 2014;4:6901.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Vanbésien O. Artificial Materials. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; 2012.
An edited book
Fine IH, Mojon DS, editors. Minimally Invasive Ophthalmic Surgery. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer; 2010.
A chapter in an edited book
Csató G, Dacorogna B, Kneuss O. Dimension Reduction. In: Dacorogna B, Kneuss O, editors. The Pullback Equation for Differential Forms, Boston, MA: Birkhäuser; 2012, p. 91–7.

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 Precision Engineering.

Blog post
Hale T. Explore A Mystery Structure Found At A Stone Age Dump Through This 3D Model. IFLScience 2016.


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. Truck Transport: Little Is Known About Hauling Garbage and Food in the Same Vehicles. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office; 1990.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Asare KB. Understanding the Transformational Leadership Practices of Colleges of Education Principals. Doctoral dissertation. Northcentral University, 2016.

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
Hodgman J. Bonus Advice From Judge John Hodgman. New York Times 2016:MM26.

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 titlePrecision Engineering
AbbreviationPrecis. Eng.
ISSN (print)0141-6359
ScopeGeneral Engineering

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