How to format your references using the Science Advances citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Science Advances. 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
G. Benford, Taking control. Nature. 406, 462 (2000).
A journal article with 2 authors
S. Roth, K. A. Panfilio, Development. Making waves for segments. Science. 336, 306–307 (2012).
A journal article with 3 authors
Y. Lu, W. Wang, M. W. Kirschner, Specificity of the anaphase-promoting complex: a single-molecule study. Science. 348, 1248737 (2015).
A journal article with 6 or more authors
A. A. Goodman, E. W. Rosolowsky, M. A. Borkin, J. B. Foster, M. Halle, J. Kauffmann, J. E. Pineda, A role for self-gravity at multiple length scales in the process of star formation. Nature. 457, 63–66 (2009).

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
E. Castillo, A. Cobo, F. Jubete, R. E. Pruneda, Orthogonal Sets and Polar Methods in Linear Algebra (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, 1999).
An edited book
R. Bulajich Manfrino, Topics in Algebra and Analysis: Preparing for the Mathematical Olympiad (Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2015).
A chapter in an edited book
H. Mahmoud, F. Masulli, S. Rovetta, G. Russo, "Community Detection in Protein-Protein Interaction Networks Using Spectral and Graph Approaches" in Computational Intelligence Methods for Bioinformatics and Biostatistics: 10th International Meeting, CIBB 2013, Nice, France, June 20-22, 2013, Revised Selected Papers, E. Formenti, R. Tagliaferri, E. Wit, Eds. (Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2014), Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pp. 62–75.

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 Science Advances.

Blog post
K. Evans, Burning Less Coal Means Less Mercury In Your Sushi. IFLScience (2016), (available at


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, “Revision of FCC Rules to Ensure Compatibility with Enhanced 911 Emergency Calling Systems” (OGC-96-34, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1996).

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
B. Maranhao, thesis, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA (2015).

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
L. Greenhouse, Detainee Case Will Pose Delicate Question for Court. New York Times (2006), p. A12.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text

About the journal

Full journal titleScience Advances
AbbreviationSci. Adv.
ISSN (online)2375-2548

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