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Numbered citation

This guide explains some of the more common applications of a numbered citation style. It is based on the Royal Society of Chemistry referencing style, and uses examples and explanations from:

 K. Lim, Chemistry Style Manual, Deakin University, Geelong, rev. edn., 2010.

A range of scientific disciplines use a similar referencing style to the one described here, with minor variations. The relevant journals in each field can be checked for details of the appropriate style.

Deakin guide to Numbered Citation

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You should always check your unit guide or with academic staff (unit chair, lecturer or tutor) to make sure that this is the recommended style for your unit. Note that some units, courses and disciplines use variations of the style described here.


General principles

The numbered citation style used by the Royal Society of Chemistry consists of the following elements:

  1. In-text references in the form of consecutive superscript numbers that follow the relevant section of the text. The same number is used throughout a paper for a single work.
  2. A numerically ordered reference list at the end of the paper giving full details of each source cited in text.

Citations

You must reference all material you use from sources each time you use a fact, a conclusion, an idea or a finding from someone's work. It is necessary to cite a source each time you:

  • summarise, explain or discuss another writer's ideas or findings in your own words
  • paraphrase (closely re-word what someone has said)
  • quote (reproduce an author's exact words).

No quotation marks are required if you are summarising or paraphrasing. Place direct quotes within quote marks.

For all sources cited in the body of the paper, provide a superscript number (with no space) after the relevant text. The superscript number is placed after a full stop or other punctuation marks at the end of a sentence.

The structural and dynamic properties of polymers have been studied by comparing the behaviour of linear and ring polymers in dilute solution.1

These numbers refer to a numerically ordered reference list at the end of the paper.

The same number is used for a source throughout a paper. This number is determined by the first citation of the source. For example, if a work is the fourth source cited in a paper, it will be referred to by the superscript number 4  throughout that paper.

Citing multiple sources

When two or more references appear at the same point in the text, the relevant superscript numbers are separated by commas. Three or more consecutive citations are joined by a hyphen.

Homonuclear metal cluster complexes have been extensively studied, with the chemistry of the triosmium clusters and organic substrates being the most well-established.1, 2 The synthesis and chemistry of homonuclear metal cluster complexes have been reported. 2-4

Group author

In the reference list entry, place the institution responsible for the work in the author position.

Royal Society of Chemistry, Common Journal Abbreviations, <http://www.rsc.org/Publishing/ReSourCe/AuthorGuidelines/AuthoringTools/JournalAbbreviations>, 2010 (accessed 3 June 2014).

Reference list

The reference list includes only the works cited in the paper. It appears at the end of the paper and provides the full bibliographic information of the sources cited. Only one reference list entry should be provided for each work cited. The reference list is ordered numerically according to the order of the first citation of a work.

  • The reference number does not have a full stop after it and the reference entry is indented from the number.
  • Include the names of all authors in the order they are listed in the publication.
  • Authors' and editors' initials precede their family names. Names are separated by commas with 'and' between the last two names.  e.g. P. S. Francis, R. A. Russell and N. W. Barnett.
  • Titles of books and journals are italicised.

Sample reference list

1      U. Klabunde, Inorg. Synth., 1974, 15, 82-84.

2      K. F. Lim, Parabola, 1981, 17 (1) 17-23.

3      S. J. Davies, J. A. K. Howard, M. U. Pilotti and F. G. A. Stone, J. Chem. Soc. Dalton Trans., 1989, 1855-1863.

4      G. H. Aylward and T. J. V. Findlay, S.I. Chemical Data, Wiley, Milton (Qld), 6th edn., 2008. 

5      W. H. Miller (ed.), Dynamics of Molecular Collisions, Plenum Press, New York, 1976.

6      P. C. Jurs, in Reviews in Computational Chemistry, ed. K. B. Lipkowitz and D. B. Boyd, VCH Publishers, New York, 1990, vol. 1, pp. 169-212.

7      P. Corradini and G. Guerra, in Macmillan Encyclopedia of Chemistry, ed. J. J. Lagowski, Simon & Schuster Macmillan, New York, 1997, vol. 4, pp. 1538-1543.

8      W. L. Hase, R. J. Duchovic, X. Hu, A. Komornicki, K. F. Lim, D. H. Lu, G. H. Peslherbe, K. N. Swamy, S. R. Vande Linde, A. Varandas, H. Wang and R. J. Wolf, Quantum Chem. Program Exchange Bull., 1996, 16 (4) 43.

9      R. G. Gilbert, M. J. T. Jordan and S. C. Smith, Program package UNIMOL: Calculation of rate coefficients for unimolecular and recombination reactions, University of Sydney, 1990.

10   Royal Society of Chemistry, Common Journal Abbreviations, <http://www.rsc.org/Publishing/ReSourCe/AuthorGuidelines/AuthoringTools/JournalAbbreviations>, 2010 (accessed 3 September 2010).


Source types

Book

In the reference list entry:

  • Book titles should be italicised and all major words should be capitalised.
  • If the city of publication is not well known, then the state or the country should also be included.
  • Edition number is provided only for second (or later) editions.

Initials. Author/Editor, Title of Book, Publisher, City (state or country, if city not well known), edition number if not the first, year, volume number.

G. H. Aylward and T. J. V. Findlay, SI Chemical Data, Wiley, Milton (Qld), 6th edn., 2008.

K. B. Lipkowitz and D. B. Boyd (eds), Reviews in Computational Chemistry, VCH Publishers, New York, 1990, vol. 1.

Chapter, article or report in an edited book

When you refer to a specific article, report or chapter in an edited book containing individual contributions by various authors, you need to acknowledge the particular author whose work you are citing. In the reference list entry, provide the name of the author cited plus information about the book in which the work appears.

  • The title of the book section or chapter is not identified but the book title is preceded by the word 'in' to indicate that the cited work is part of an edited collection.
  • The first page of the chapter (or first page of the article) has to be identified. Where possible, cite the range of pages.
  • Use p. or pp. for page number(s) of articles or chapters in books. (Note that journal articles do not use p. or pp.)

Initials. Author of section/chapter, in Title of Book, Editor(s), Publisher, City, year, volume number (if applicable), page numbers or chapter number.

P. C. Jurs, in Reviews in Computational Chemistry, ed. K. B. Lipkowitz and D. B. Boyd, VCH Publishers, New York, 1990, vol. 1, pp. 169-212.

When referring to the entire book and not to a specific section or chapter by a particular author, the work is listed under the editor's name.

W. H. Miller (ed.), Dynamics of Molecular Collisions, Plenum Press, New York, 1976.

Enyclopedia

It is not recommended to use articles from general reference books like the Encyclopaedia Britannica. You may want to get an overview from a general encyclopedia article before you research a complex and difficult topic, but do not cite such a source in your assignment.

If you use an article from a specialist encyclopedia, cite it as you would a chapter in an edited book.

Initials. Author, in Title of Encyclopedia, ed. Editor(s), Publisher, City, year, volume number, page numbers.

P. Corradini and G. Guerra, in Macmillan Encyclopedia of Chemistry, ed. J. J. Lagowski, Simon & Schuster Macmillan, New York, 1997, vol. 4, pp. 1538-1543.

Journal article

Initials. Author, Abbreviated journal title, year, volume number (issue number) first page of article or page range.

K. F. Lim, Parabola, 1981, 17 (1) 17-23.

  • The name of the article is not included in the citation.
  • Indicate the volume number using bold font.
  • Place the issue number in brackets.
  • Where possible, cite the range of pages of the article.

Continuous pagination
Continuous pagination (used by many journals) continues the sequence of page numbers through all the issues that make up a volume. It is not necessary to indicate issue numbers, as page numbers are sufficient to indicate the location of articles in volumes that use continuous pagination.

Initials. Author, Abbreviated journal title, year, volume number, page range.

U. Klabunde, Inorg. Synth., 1974, 15, 82-84

Separate pagination
Some journals do not number pages continuously through the issues that make up a volume; each issue begins at page 1.  Provide the issue number in brackets after the volume number.

Initials. Author, Abbreviated journal title, year, volume number (issue number) page range.

K. F. Lim, Parabola, 1981, 17 (1) 17-23.

Volumes numbered by year
Some journals use only the year to indicate each volume; there is no dedicated volume number.

Initials. Author, Abbreviated journal title, year, page range.

S. J. Davies, J. A. K. Howard, M. U. Pilotti and F. G. A. Stone, J. Chem. Soc. Dalton Trans., 1989, 1855-1863.

Webpage or web document

Material from the web must always be checked for reliability, accuracy and appropriateness. Anonymous content should not be used because the accuracy cannot be checked. For guidelines on evaluating materials from the web, see Appendix G: Reliability of World Wide Web Reference Materials in: K. Lim, Chemistry Style Manual, Deakin University, Geelong, rev. edn., 2010.

Note the following when referencing web materials:

  • A web citation should provide the author, title of document/webpage, the URL, the year of publication, and the full date the material was accessed.
  • If there is no identifiable author, list the institution responsible for the website.
  • If you have to break a web address across a line, do so after a slash or before a full stop. Do not add a hyphen at the line break.

Author, Title, <URL>, year (accessed day month year).

Royal Society of Chemistry, Common Journal Abbreviations, <http://www.rsc.org/
Publishing/ReSourCe/AuthorGuidelines/AuthoringTools/JournalAbbreviations>, 2010 (accessed 3 September 2010).

Computer program

Computer programs that are released through a program library, e.g. the Quantum Chemistry Program Exchange or the Computer Physics Communications Library, are referenced as journal articles, based on the announcement of the program's release.

W. L. Hase, R. J. Duchovic, X. Hu, A. Komornicki, K. F. Lim, D. H. Lu, G. H. Peslherbe, K. N. Swamy, S. R. Vande Linde, A. Varandas, H. Wang and R. J. Wolf, Quantum Chem. Program Exchange Bull.,1996, 16 (4) 43.

Computer programs that are released through an institution or a commercial publisher should be referenced like a book, except that the title of the computer program is not italicised.

R. G. Gilbert, M. J. T. Jordan and S. C. Smith, Program package UNIMOL: Calculation of rate coefficients for unimolecular and recombination reactions, University of Sydney, 1990.

Thesis

The thesis type is the name of the degree for which the thesis has been submitted. Theses should only be cited when the information has not been published elsewhere. The title is not included.

Initials. Author, thesis type, University, year.

T. C. Brown, MSc thesis, Australian National University, 1982.

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