How to format your references using the Psychological Methods citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Psychological Methods. 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
Mi, B. (2014). Materials science. Graphene oxide membranes for ionic and molecular sieving. Science (New York, N.Y.), 343(6172), 740–742.
A journal article with 2 authors
Barton, G. M., & Medzhitov, R. (2003). Toll-like receptor signaling pathways. Science (New York, N.Y.), 300(5625), 1524–1525.
A journal article with 3 authors
Moynier, F., Yin, Q.-Z., & Schauble, E. (2011). Isotopic evidence of Cr partitioning into Earth’s core. Science (New York, N.Y.), 331(6023), 1417–1420.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Larison, J. R., Likens, G. E., Fitzpatrick, J. W., & Crock, J. G. (2000). Cadmium toxicity among wildlife in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Nature, 406(6792), 181–183.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Kracke, E.-A., & Lodde, K. (2011). Leitfaden Straßenbrücken. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.
An edited book
Ibrahimbegovic, A., & Kozar, I. (Eds.). (2007). Extreme Man-Made and Natural Hazards in Dynamics of Structures. Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Rosenthal, E., Flexer, A., & Möller, P. (2009). The hydrochemical history of the Rift. In H. Hötzl, P. Möller, & E. Rosenthal (Eds.), The Water of the Jordan Valley: Scarcity and Deterioration of Groundwater and its Impact on the Regional Development (pp. 75–82). 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 Psychological Methods.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2015, February 18). Military Test Amphibious Robot Guard Balls. 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. (2012). Batteries and Energy Storage: Federal Initiatives Supported Similar Technologies and Goals but Had Key Differences (GAO-12-842). 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
Parker, J. S. (2006). Land Tenure in the Sugar Creek Watershed: A Contextual Analysis of Land Tenure and Social Networks, Intergenerational Farm Succession, and Conservation Use Among Farmers of Wayne County, Ohio [Doctoral dissertation]. Ohio State University.

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
David Goodman, J., & White, R. (2015, October 6). 2nd Victim Found in Rubble of Brooklyn Building That Exploded. New York Times, A26.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Mi, 2014).
This sentence cites two references (Barton & Medzhitov, 2003; Mi, 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Barton & Medzhitov, 2003)
  • Three authors: (Moynier et al., 2011)
  • 6 or more authors: (Larison et al., 2000)

About the journal

Full journal titlePsychological Methods
AbbreviationPsychol. Methods
ISSN (print)1082-989X
ISSN (online)1939-1463
ScopePsychology (miscellaneous)

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