CSE Citation Style

When writing academic papers, it is important to credit the author of any information (direct quotations, paraphrasing, code, data, etc.) that is not your own, original work. In order to acknowledge another person’s idea, cite your sources both in-text and in your reference section. Failing to do so constitutes plagiarism.

CSE (Council of Science Editors) Citation Style

The Council of Science Editors (CSE) has published the style guide Scientific Style and Format: The CSE Manual for Authors, Editors, and Publishers, 8th edition (2014). CSE style is used widely across the natural and applied sciences.

CSE style comprises of three systems for referencing:

1. Name-Year

  • In-text citations: Provide the author’s surname and year of publication within brackets
  • References: Listed in alphabetical order by author surname

2. Citation-Sequence 

  • In-text citations: Use a superscript number (e.g. 1) to refer to the original source. Use the same number in each subsequent citation of said source.
  • References: Listed numerically in order of appearance in-text

3. Citation-Name

  • In-text citations: In-text citations: Use a superscript number (e.g. 1) to refer to the original source. Use the same number in each subsequent citation of said source.
  • References: Listed in alphabetical order by author surname

Reference list formatting in citation-sequence and citation-name style are identical. End references in name-year style differ only in the placement of the date of publication.

Use the system which is common in your discipline. If you are unsure which style to use, consult your course instructor.

Both in-text citations and a reference list are required for proper CSE citations.

Note: This resource is a guide - not an authoritative manual - based on Chapter 29 of Scientific style and format: the CSE manual for authors, editors, and publishers 8th ed. (2014).  If you do not know how to cite a particular item or are citing an item not found in this guide, consult Chapter 29 of the CSE manual (available at the Reserve desk, call number T11 .S386 2014).

If you are still in doubt, consult your course instructor

To learn how to cite using CSE, follow the links in this guide.

Content last reviewed: March 14, 2019