How to format your references using the Surface Science citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Surface 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
F. Sirocko, Paleoclimate. What drove past teleconnections?, Science. 301 (2003) 1336–1337.
A journal article with 2 authors
J.L. Peña, M. Konishi, Auditory spatial receptive fields created by multiplication, Science. 292 (2001) 249–252.
A journal article with 3 authors
S.-H. Kim, H. Kim, N.J. Kim, Brittle intermetallic compound makes ultrastrong low-density steel with large ductility, Nature. 518 (2015) 77–79.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
L. Gil, P. Fuentes-Utrilla, A. Soto, M.T. Cervera, C. Collada, Phylogeography: English elm is a 2,000-year-old Roman clone, Nature. 431 (2004) 1053.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
A. Ahlemeyer-Stubbe, S. Coleman, A Practical Guide to Data Mining for Business and Industry, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK, 2014.
An edited book
G. Lock, Confronting scale in archaeology: Issues of Theory and Practice, Springer US, Boston, MA, 2006.
A chapter in an edited book
R. Horne, T. Umarov, Ensuring Faultless Communication Behaviour in A Commercial Cloud, in: S. Counsell, M. Núñez (Eds.), Software Engineering and Formal Methods: SEFM 2013 Collocated Workshops: BEAT2, WS-FMDS, FM-RAIL-Bok, MoKMaSD, and OpenCert, Madrid, Spain, September 23-24, 2013, Revised Selected Papers, Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2014: pp. 44–55.

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 Surface Science.

Blog post
D. Andrew, Mums And Dads Of Very Preterm Babies More Likely To Be Depressed, IFLScience. (2016).


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, Aviation Forecasting: FAA Should Implement Additional Risk-Management Practices in Forecasting Aviation Activity, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 2016.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Z.S. Nuno, Visible and mid-infrared optical studies of plasmon and phonon resonant nanoparticles using apertureless near-field scanning optical microscopy, Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach, 2012.

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
M.W. Walsh, Ex-Insurer Says ‘Perfect Scheme’ Bilks Medicare, New York Times. (2017) A1.

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 titleSurface Science
AbbreviationSurf. Sci.
ISSN (print)0039-6028
ScopeMaterials Chemistry
Surfaces, Coatings and Films
Condensed Matter Physics
Surfaces and Interfaces

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