How to format your references using the Social Studies of Science citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Social Studies of Science. 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
Heglund NC (2004) Physiology. Running a-fowl of the law. Science (New York, N.Y.) 303(5654): 47–48.
A journal article with 2 authors
Jacobsen SB and Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA. (2003) Geochemistry. How old is planet Earth? Science (New York, N.Y.) 300(5625): 1513–1514.
A journal article with 3 authors
Stephens DW, McLinn CM and Stevens JR (2002) Discounting and reciprocity in an Iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma. Science (New York, N.Y.) 298(5601): 2216–2218.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Bax BD, Chan PF, Eggleston DS, et al. (2010) Type IIA topoisomerase inhibition by a new class of antibacterial agents. Nature 466(7309): 935–940.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Peinado AM and Segura JC (2006) Speech Recognition Over Digital Channels. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Chalasani N and Szabo G (eds) (2016) Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: Bench to Bedside. Cham: Springer International Publishing.
A chapter in an edited book
Sainz MA, Armengol J, Calm R, et al. (2014) Interpretability and Optimality. In: Armengol J, Calm R, Herrero P, et al. (eds) Modal Interval Analysis: New Tools for Numerical Information. Lecture Notes in Mathematics. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 73–120.

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 Social Studies of Science.

Blog post
Andrew E (2015) No Bones About It: Sharks Evolved Cartilage For A Reason. IFLScience. Available at: (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 (2005) National Airspace System: Progress and Ongoing Challenges for the Air Traffic Organization. GAO-05-485T, 14 April. 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
LaPorte M (2017) Depression and Rumination as a Predictor for Types of Substances Abused. Doctoral dissertation. University of Louisiana, Lafayette, LA.

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
Brantley B (2016) A Father and a Family, Dissolving Into Darkness. New York Times, 18 February.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Heglund, 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Heglund, 2004; Jacobsen and Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA., 2003).

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

  • Two authors: (Jacobsen and Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA., 2003)
  • Three or more authors: (Bax et al., 2010)

About the journal

Full journal titleSocial Studies of Science
AbbreviationSoc. Stud. Sci.
ISSN (print)0306-3127
ISSN (online)1460-3659
History and Philosophy of Science
General Social Sciences

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