How to format your references using the Research in Science Education citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Research in Science 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.
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
Gottesman, D. (2006). Physics. Jump-starting quantum error correction with entanglement. Science (New York, N.Y.), 314(5798), 427–428.
A journal article with 2 authors
D’Souza, V., & Summers, M. F. (2004). Structural basis for packaging the dimeric genome of Moloney murine leukaemia virus. Nature, 431(7008), 586–590.
A journal article with 3 authors
Kerr, J. T., Kharouba, H. M., & Currie, D. J. (2007). The macroecological contribution to global change solutions. Science (New York, N.Y.), 316(5831), 1581–1584.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Brown, C. E., Howe, L., Sousa, K., Alley, S. C., Carrozza, M. J., Tan, S., & Workman, J. L. (2001). Recruitment of HAT complexes by direct activator interactions with the ATM-related Tra1 subunit. Science (New York, N.Y.), 292(5525), 2333–2337.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Calvello, A. A. (2009). Environmental Alpha. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Reissig, M., & Schulze, B.-W. (Eds.). (2005). New Trends in the Theory of Hyperbolic Equations (Vol. 159). Basel: Birkhäuser.
A chapter in an edited book
Mayor, G., & Recasens, J. (2010). Finitely Valued Indistinguishability Operators. In E. Hüllermeier, R. Kruse, & F. Hoffmann (Eds.), Computational Intelligence for Knowledge-Based Systems Design: 13th International Conference on Information Processing and Management of Uncertainty, IPMU 2010, Dortmund, Germany, June 28 - July 2, 2010. Proceedings (pp. 39–48). Berlin, Heidelberg: 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 Science Education.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2015, June 3). Our Predictions Of Solar Storms Have Not Been Very Accurate Until Now – Here’s Why. IFLScience. IFLScience. Accessed 30 October 2018


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. (1997). USDA Information Management: Extensive Improvements Needed in Managing Information Technology Investments (No. T-AIMD-97-90). 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
Sugg, J. (2012). Small Graces: Mapping a Route of Beauty to the Heart of the World (Doctoral dissertation). Pacifica Graduate Institute, Carpinteria, CA.

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
Pilon, M., & Lehren, A. W. (2014, September 11). Modified Training for Children Stirs New Debates. New York Times, p. B14.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Gottesman 2006).
This sentence cites two references (D’Souza and Summers 2004; Gottesman 2006).

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

  • Two authors: (D’Souza and Summers 2004)
  • Three or more authors: (Brown et al. 2001)

About the journal

Full journal titleResearch in Science Education
AbbreviationRes. Sci. Educ.
ISSN (print)0157-244X
ISSN (online)1573-1898

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