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
Rietbrock, A. (2007). Geophysics. Listening to the crackle of subducting oceanic plates. Science 316, 1439–1440.
A journal article with 2 authors
Polyak, K. and Marusyk, A. (2014). Cancer: Clonal cooperation. Nature 508, 52–53.
A journal article with 3 authors
Scarf, D., Hayne, H. and Colombo, M. (2011). Pigeons on par with primates in numerical competence. Science 334, 1664.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Lu, K., Heng, X., Garyu, L., Monti, S., Garcia, E. L., Kharytonchyk, S., Dorjsuren, B., Kulandaivel, G., Jones, S., Hiremath, A., et al. (2011). NMR detection of structures in the HIV-1 5’-leader RNA that regulate genome packaging. Science 334, 242–245.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Li, W. (2004). Risk Assessment of Power Systems. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Curtis, B. (2014). Practical Oracle Database Appliance. (ed. Arshad, F.), Benner, E.), Elsins, M.), Gallagher, M.), Sharman, P.), and Velikanov, Y.) Berkeley, CA: Apress.
A chapter in an edited book
Rinkevich, Y., Matranga, V. and Rinkevich, B. (2009). Stem Cells in Aquatic Invertebrates: Common Premises and Emerging Unique Themes. In Stem Cells in Marine Organisms (ed. Rinkevich, B.) and Matranga, V.), pp. 61–103. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.

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
Luntz, S. (2014). Monkeys Capable Of Mathematics. 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 (2001). Motor Vehicle Safety: NHTSA’s Ability to Detect and Recall Defective Replacement Crash Parts Is Limited. 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
Wallace, D. R. (2006). A Comparative Analysis of a Conventional Versus a Computer-assisted Technique for Identification of Mechanical Power Press Hazards.

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
Kepner, T. (2016). A 105-M.P.H. Fastball? Nice. What Else You Got? New York Times A1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Rietbrock, 2007).
This sentence cites two references (Polyak and Marusyk, 2014; Rietbrock, 2007).

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

  • Two authors: (Polyak and Marusyk, 2014)
  • Three or more authors: (Lu et al., 2011)

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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