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
Turney, J. 2001. “Strings and Things.” Nature 410 (6831): 873.
A journal article with 2 authors
Ezenwa, Vanessa O., and Anna E. Jolles. 2015. “Epidemiology. Opposite Effects of Anthelmintic Treatment on Microbial Infection at Individual versus Population Scales.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 347 (6218): 175–177.
A journal article with 3 authors
Kildishev, Alexander V., Alexandra Boltasseva, and Vladimir M. Shalaev. 2013. “Planar Photonics with Metasurfaces.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 339 (6125): 1232009.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Norkko, Alf, Anna Villnäs, Joanna Norkko, Sebastian Valanko, and Conrad Pilditch. 2013. “Size Matters: Implications of the Loss of Large Individuals for Ecosystem Function.” Scientific Reports 3: 2646.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Heiberger, Richard M. 2015. Computation for the Analysis of Designed Experiments. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Martin, Ulrich, ed. 2009. Engineering of Stem Cells. Vol. 114. Advances in Biochemical Engineering / Biotechnology. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Motreanu, Dumitru, Viorica Venera Motreanu, and Nikolaos Papageorgiou. 2014. “Variational Principles and Critical Point Theory.” In Topological and Variational Methods with Applications to Nonlinear Boundary Value Problems, edited by Viorica Venera Motreanu and Nikolaos Papageorgiou, 97–139. New York, NY: 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 Research in Post-Compulsory Education.

Blog post
Fang, Janet. 2014. “Pollution-Guzzling, Air-Cleaning Buildings.” 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. 2002. Airport Infrastructure: Unresolved Issues Make It Difficult to Determine the Cost to Serve New Large Aircraft. GAO-02-251. 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
Mahrenholz, Fahriye. 2010. “The Emergence, Growth, and Challenges of Online Learning.” 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
Kenigsberg, Ben. 2017. “Film Series.” New York Times, June 15.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Turney 2001).
This sentence cites two references (Turney 2001; Ezenwa and Jolles 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Ezenwa and Jolles 2015)
  • Three authors: (Kildishev, Boltasseva, and Shalaev 2013)
  • 4 or more authors: (Norkko et al. 2013)

About the journal

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

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