How to format your references using the Research in Post-Compulsory Education citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Research in Post-Compulsory Education. 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
de Waal, Frans B. M. 2009. “Darwin’s Last Laugh.” Nature 460 (7252): 175.
A journal article with 2 authors
Hom, Erik F. Y., and Andrew W. Murray. 2014. “Plant-Fungal Ecology. Niche Engineering Demonstrates a Latent Capacity for Fungal-Algal Mutualism.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 345 (6192): 94–98.
A journal article with 3 authors
Hayashi, Katsuhiko, Susana M. Chuva de Sousa Lopes, and M. Azim Surani. 2007. “Germ Cell Specification in Mice.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 316 (5823): 394–396.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Saleh, Maya, John C. Mathison, Melissa K. Wolinski, Steve J. Bensinger, Patrick Fitzgerald, Nathalie Droin, Richard J. Ulevitch, Douglas R. Green, and Donald W. Nicholson. 2006. “Enhanced Bacterial Clearance and Sepsis Resistance in Caspase-12-Deficient Mice.” Nature 440 (7087): 1064–1068.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Bacon, Carl R. 2012. Practical Risk-Adjusted Performance Measurement. Oxford, UK: John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
An edited book
Dishovsky, Christophor, Alexander Pivovarov, and Hendrik Benschop, eds. 2006. Medical Treatment of Intoxications and Decontamination of Chemical Agent in the Area of Terrorist Attack. Vol. 1. NATO Security Through Science Series. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Yan, Fang, and D. Brent Polk. 2009. “Mechanisms of Probiotic Regulation of Host Homeostasis.” In Probiotics in Pediatric Medicine, edited by Sonia Michail and Philip M. Sherman, 53–68. Totowa, NJ: Humana Press.

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 Research in Post-Compulsory Education.

Blog post
Davis, Josh. 2016. “Australian Rabbits Adapting To Eat Plants Thought To Be Too Toxic.” 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. 1991. Air Traffic Control: Software Problems at Control Centers Need Immediate Attention. IMTEC-92-1. 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
Pan, Yi. 2010. “Long-Term Effects of Higher-Quality Early Childhood Education for At-Risk Children on Their Later Development and Resilience.” Doctoral dissertation, Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina.

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
Vecsey, George. 2010. “Outlook That Soccer Can Do Without.” New York Times, December 18.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (de Waal 2009).
This sentence cites two references (de Waal 2009; Hom and Murray 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Hom and Murray 2014)
  • Three authors: (Hayashi, de Sousa Lopes, and Surani 2007)
  • 4 or more authors: (Saleh et al. 2006)

About the journal

Full journal titleResearch in Post-Compulsory Education
ISSN (print)1359-6748
ISSN (online)1747-5112

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