How to format your references using the Systematic Reviews citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Systematic Reviews. 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
1. Orhon D. Istanbul canal needs environmental study. Nature. 2014;513:461.
A journal article with 2 authors
1. Takeuchi T, Morris RGM. Neuroscience: Shedding light on a change of mind. Nature. 2014;513:323–4.
A journal article with 3 authors
1. Durham WM, Kessler JO, Stocker R. Disruption of vertical motility by shear triggers formation of thin phytoplankton layers. Science. 2009;323:1067–70.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
1. Ahn HS, Kim JM, Park C, Jang J-W, Lee JS, Kim H, et al. A novel role of three dimensional graphene foam to prevent heater failure during boiling. Sci Rep. 2013;3:1960.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
1. Goria S. Methods and Tools for Creative Competitive Intelligence. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; 2017.
An edited book
1. Narey M, editor. Making Meaning: Constructing Multimodal Perspectives of Language, Literacy, and Learning through Arts-based Early Childhood Education. Boston, MA: Springer US; 2009.
A chapter in an edited book
1. Moos M-K, Bennett AC. Preconceptional Health Promotion. In: Handler A, Kennelly J, Peacock N, editors. Reducing Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Reproductive and Perinatal Outcomes: The Evidence from Population-Based Interventions. Boston, MA: Springer US; 2011. p. 65–92.

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 Systematic Reviews.

Blog post
1. Davis J. Newly Refined “Liquid Biopsies” Could Detect Cancer From Simple Blood Tests. IFLScience. IFLScience; 2017.

Reports

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
1. Government Accountability Office. Highway Infrastructure: Quality Improvements Would Safeguard Billions of Dollars Already Invested. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office; 1994 Sep. Report No.: RCED-94-198.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
1. Sutherland CE. Positive deviance during organization change: Researchers’ social construction of expanded university goals [Doctoral dissertation]. [Malibu, CA]: Pepperdine University; 2013.

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
1. Kelly D. Starting Out in the ’70s. New York Times. 2011 Nov 6;BR17.

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 titleSystematic Reviews
AbbreviationSyst. Rev.
ISSN (online)2046-4053
ScopeMedicine (miscellaneous)

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