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Citations: IEEE Style

Learn what a citation is, how to read a citation and how to create APA, ASA, MLA, and Chicago style citations.

IEEE Writing Style

IEEE style is a commonly used writing style for formatting articles or conference proceedings/papers published by IEEE. Using a standardized format provides both the reader and writer with a common understanding of the layout of a paper and how to find cited sources.

It is helpful for students to consider IEEE style in 3 parts:

  • Formatting:  the layout of a paper
  • In-text Citations: briefly citing sources in the text of a paper
  • References: full citation information at the end of a paper

If you are not sure which IEEE journal, magazine or conference you would like to submit your work to, check out  the IEEE Publication Recommender

IEEE Style: Formatting

IEEE Style: In-Text Citations

Unlike APA or MLA citation styles, IEEE does not require references cited in the actual text of a paper.  Within the text of the paper, references are given as a number and only the number appears within a sentence, in square brackets, inside the punctuation.  Here are a few examples: 

  • Complex optical quantum states are a key resource for investigations of fundamental question in physics, as well as advanced applications such as quantum-based secure communications [1], powerful information processing schemes [2], and metrology/sensing [3]. 
  • In order to generate high dimensional entangled states, we excited a single resonance of an integrated micro-ring resonator with a spectrally-filtered mode-locked laser [10].
  • Finally, microcavity-based complex states and their temporal and spectral manipulation via standard telecommunications components can, especially if combined with gate implementations presently under development [41]–[43], open up new venues for reaching the state complexities and processing capabilities required for meaningful quantum information science.

More information can be found in the IEEE Reference Guide.

IEEE Style: References

References are created following the IEEE Reference Guide

To create references for specific IEEE publications, you will also need to use the following:

Some General Guidelines:

  • Reference numbers are set flush left and form a column of their own, hanging out beyond the reference, and are enclosed in square brackets. Use only one reference with each number. Do not combine references. 
  • Names
    • In all references, the first name of the author or editor is abbreviated to the initial only and precedes the last name (e.g. R. Fardel, M. Nagel, F. Nuesch, T. Lipper, and A. Wokaun). 
    • For all IEEE publications used in a reference, list names of ALL authors, up to six names.  If there are more than six names, use the primary author's name followed by et al. (e.g. S. Azodolmolky et al.)
    • For non-IEEE publications, et al. may be used if names are not provided.
  • End all references with a period, including all references that end with a DOI. If the reference ends with a URL, do not add a period at the end. 
  • For any reference that cites two months for the same issue, the two months should be separated by a slash (e.g., Jul./Aug.), followed by the year of publication.

LaTeX Formatting

Need to format your citations in LaTeX? 

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