How to format your references using the Student BMJ citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Student BMJ. 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
Heyde M. Materials Science. Structure and motion of a 2D glass. Science 2013;342:201–2.
A journal article with 2 authors
Goulder LH, Stavins RN. Discounting: an eye on the future. Nature 2002;419:673–4.
A journal article with 3 authors
Moray C, Game ET, Maxted N. Prioritising in situ conservation of crop resources: a case study of African cowpea (Vigna unguiculata). Sci Rep 2014;4:5247.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Titova LV, Ayesheshim AK, Golubov A, et al. Intense THz pulses down-regulate genes associated with skin cancer and psoriasis: a new therapeutic avenue? Sci Rep 2013;3:2363.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Nathanail CP, Bardos RP. Reclamation of Contaminated Land. Chichester, UK: : John Wiley & Sons, Ltd 2005.
An edited book
Sawai H, editor. Biological Functions for Information and Communication Technologies: Theory and Inspiration. Berlin, Heidelberg: : Springer 2011.
A chapter in an edited book
Duque A, Campos C, Jiménez-Ruiz E, et al. An Ontological Solution to Support Interoperability in the Textile Industry. In: Poler R, Sinderen M van, Sanchis R, eds. Enterprise Interoperability: Second IFIP WG 5.8 International Workshop, IWEI 2009, Valencia, Spain, October 13-14, 2009. Proceedings. Berlin, Heidelberg: : Springer 2009. 38–51.

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 Student BMJ.

Blog post
O`Callaghan J. Astronomers Detects Wind Speeds Of 5,400mph On Distant Exoplanet. IFLScience. 2015. (accessed 30 Oct 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. Department of Transportation: Experts Identified Areas for Operational Improvements without Implementing Organizational Changes. Washington, DC: : U.S. Government Printing Office 2017.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Lama N. Optimized Veterinary Thermographic Image Classification using Support Vector Machines and Noise Mitigation. 2017.

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
Eddy M, Kishkovsky S. Bolshoi Director Is Upbeat About His Recovery. New York Times. 2013;:C3.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1,2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titleStudent BMJ
ISSN (print)0966-6494

Other styles