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How to cite?

Citation styles

There are a few thousands of citation styles. This is due to the fact that many disciplines have their own methods of citing. Some publishing houses or journals created their own citation styles. There are also „universal“ citation styles without link to any specific institution or discipline.

When writing an assignment first find out what citation style to use (either at your consultant or in the Guidelines for authors, etc.).

Citation Styles Overview

  • individual disciplines, scientific institutions
    • APA style (American Psychological Association) - used in psychology and related disciplines
    • ACS style (American Chemical Society) – used in Chemistry
    • IEEE style (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) – citation style of the documents published by IEEE, used in technical disciplines
    • Etc.
  • publishing houses, journals – instructions for authors (Guide for Autorhs, Information for Authors)
    • Elsevier
    • Nature style
    • Etc.
  • Universal
    • Standards - ISO 690, ČSN ISO 690
    • Chicago Style – citation style used in social sciences
    • Turabian – primarily meant for dissertations and academic writings
    • Etc.

What information the Citation Styles provide:

  • what information is included in the citation (author, title, original document, etc.) and what way it is included in the citation (number of authors, order of first and last name, etc.)
  • determine the order of these data
  • how to separate the individual pieces of information
  • what form of entry of the individual information to use (capital letters, italics)
  • how to identify the original document unambigously (the title of journal in case of articles, the collection in case of proceedings, etc.), certain citation styles abbreviate the journal title
  • what reference is necessary to use
  • how to sort the reference list

Some citation styles dispose of detailed manuals, others are described insufficiently – only basic types of documents are given. Many styles dispose of different presentations with examples.

Unless otherwise specified (by department, head of work or by faculty), at CTU in Prague it is recommended to use the citation style ČSN ISO 690 – see Guideline no. 1/2009 For adheering to ethical principles when elaborating thesis.

Citation styles differ the most in the following technical information:

  • how to write the authors‘ names (number of authors, name and surname order, capitals usage)
  • graphical distinction of the document title or original document (italics, quotation mark)
  • way of showing the information about the volume, number of journal, date of issue

Abbraviation of the journal title

It is applied in some citation styles (e.g. Vancouver) or used by some publishers (e.g. IEEE), possibly by some specific journal titles (e.g. some titles published by the publishing house Elsevier).

Read the Guide for Authors closely. Study the examples of citations and references, where you can find the title abbraviation of a journal or where you can find the link to the reference list of their abbreviations.

The title abbraviation is not arbitrary. There are rules for abbreviating the title:

  • Standard ISO 4 Information and documentation – Rules for abbreviating title words and title of publications
  • Agency ISSN makes online tool for searching fixed abbreviations available under the name LTWA (List of Title Word Abbreviations) – it follows the rules of the standard ISO 4 and has been translated into 65 languages. Try
  • The abbraviations of the IEEE journal names are accessible on the websites of IEEE. Try


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