How to format your references using the The Journal of Experimental Biology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for The Journal of Experimental Biology. 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
Chang, F. R. (2009). Computer science. Is your computer secure? Science 325, 550–551.
A journal article with 2 authors
Froemke, R. C. and Dan, Y. (2002). Spike-timing-dependent synaptic modification induced by natural spike trains. Nature 416, 433–438.
A journal article with 3 authors
Tschöp, M., Smiley, D. L. and Heiman, M. L. (2000). Ghrelin induces adiposity in rodents. Nature 407, 908–913.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Stuber, N., Forster, P., Rädel, G. and Shine, K. (2006). The importance of the diurnal and annual cycle of air traffic for contrail radiative forcing. Nature 441, 864–867.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Smith, P. (2016). Structural Design of Buildings. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Mathis, G. ed. (2011). Chest Sonography. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Hansson, S. O. (2016). Evaluating the Uncertainties. In The Argumentative Turn in Policy Analysis: Reasoning about Uncertainty (ed. Hansson, S. O.) and Hirsch Hadorn, G.), pp. 79–104. Cham: Springer International Publishing.

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 The Journal of Experimental Biology.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2015). Scientist At Work: Observing Termite Behaviours, Personalities – And Souls? IFLScience.


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 (2012). Information Technology: SBA Needs to Strengthen Oversight of Its Loan Management and Accounting System Modernization. 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
Spidell, R. M. (2017). Reexamining Richard Strauss’s Second Horn Concerto as a Significant Contribution to Twentieth-Century Music.

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
Walsh, M. W. (2016). Steps Toward Settling Puerto Rico’s Debt. New York Times B3.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Chang, 2009).
This sentence cites two references (Chang, 2009; Froemke and Dan, 2002).

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

  • Two authors: (Froemke and Dan, 2002)
  • Three or more authors: (Stuber et al., 2006)

About the journal

Full journal titleThe Journal of Experimental Biology
AbbreviationJ. Exp. Biol.
ISSN (print)0022-0949
ISSN (online)1477-9145
ScopeAnimal Science and Zoology
Aquatic Science
Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Insect Science
Molecular Biology

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