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CE 332

Research Guide for Civil Engineering 332 (Introduction to Transportation Engineering)

ACS Introduction

Reference lists or bibliographies go at the end of papers. The citations listed in the reference list correspond to the references cited in the text of the paper. With all citation formats there are variations and exceptions, but ACS in particular offers a lot of choices and a lot of variations. For example, when citing journal articles sometimes the title of the article is included, and sometimes it is not. What is most important is to know what your instructor wants in a citation and be consistent with all your citations.

ACS In-Text Citation

There are three ways to format an in-text citation using ACS. All three are acceptable, but it is important to pick one and use it throughout your paper. Do not use multiple formats in the same paper. The formats are: 

  • Superscript numbers: These numbers will appear small and outside the punctuation of the sentence. ​1
  • Italic numbers: These will go inside parenthesis and before the punctuation ending the sentence (2). 
  • Author name and year: These will be inside parenthesis and before the punctuation mark (King et al., 2018).

If you use either of the numbered formats, the citations should be numbered sequentially in your paper. The reference section of your paper should be in numerical order, so that "2" in the body of your paper corresponds to "2" in your reference list. If you use the author name and year format, the citations in your reference section should be alphabetized by authors' last names.

ACS Reference Citation

Scientific Journal Articles

The minimum information required for a journal article citation is:

  • Names of the author(s)
  • Title of journal (italicized and abbreviated). Journal title abbreviations can be found here
  • Publication year (bold)
  • Volume number (italicized)
  • Page number(s)

Basic format:

Author(s). Journal abbreviation Year, volume, page(s).


Munakata, S.; Ishimori, K.; Kitamura, N.; Ishikawa, S.; Takanami, Y.; Ito, S. Regul. Toxico. Pharmacol. 201899, 122-128.

Books Without Editors

The required information for citing a book without an editor is:

  • Names of author(s)
  • Title of book (Italicized)
  • Name of publisher
  • City of publication
  • Year of publication

Basic format:

Author(s). Title of book. Name of publisher: City, Year.


Faraday, M. Chemical History of a Candle. Oxford University Press: Oxford, 2011.

Books With Editors

The required information for citing a book with an editor is:

  • Names of author(s)
  • Title of chapter/article in book
  • Title of book (Italicized)
  • Name of editor(s)
  • Name of publisher
  • City of publication
  • Year of publication
  • Pages

Basic format:

Author(s). Title of article. In Title of book; Editor(s); Publisher: City, Year, Pages.


Backes, C.; Hirsch, A. Noncovalent Functionalization of Carbon Nanotubes. In Chemistry of Nanocarbons; Akasaka, T; Wudl, F.; Nagase, S., Eds.; Wiley: Chichester, 2010, pp 1-48.

Popular Magazine/News Articles

Basic format:

Author(s). Title of Article. Title of Magazine, Complete Date, Page(s).


Palmer, K. Taming Crispr. Wired, Oct 2018, p 108.