The reference style of the IEEE or the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineers requires all students to use citation numbers within special square brackets. They also need to number all citations correctly. Many professors ask to use the IEEE format when writing research and other academic papers in technical fields, especially in computer science and management. It’s based on Chicago guidelines and requirements. Look at a suitable IEEE format example to get more information.
IEEE style basics
When formatting an academic paper in this style, students need to number all citations and include their numbers in the text in square brackets, not superscripts. It’s necessary to include important bibliographical information in a list of references at the end of your piece of writing (next to corresponding citation numbers).
Why do formats matter? The basic purpose of any format is to provide readers with relevant data about the sources you use and cite in your text. In IEEE citations, number all references and put them in the order they appear in your paper to earn high grades. What if you need to refer to references? When referring to them in the text, put numbers in square brackets.
Basic IEEE format features
This formatting style has a few distinct features, including:
- The titles of sources (or conference papers and chapters) should be special quotation marks;
- Authors’ names include surnames and initials (this requirement is different from MLA rules);
- The title of a book or a journal should be in italics.
The above-mentioned conventions allow readers to distinguish references at once. The right placement of such details as commas, periods, pages, dates, tags, and colons depends on the type of references that you need to cite in your academic paper. Check out an updated IEEE format example to find everything you need.
Don’t forget to put periods after book titles and authors, abbreviate all months to their first three letters, and cite page numbers. Acknowledge all the sources of information that you use in the text, including borrowed ideas and quotes, to avoid plagiarism. Provide citations and their references in the order they appear in it.
How to cite sources in the text
IEEE in-text citations should consist of numbers in square brackets and correspond to specific citations in your reference list that you put at the end of your assignment. Give them in the ascending order. If you refer to the sources that you cited in the text, use the previously assigned ones to avoid making a mistake. Enclose all in-text citation numbers by square brackets and put them on the text line (with space before brackets and inside sentence punctuation).
What if your citations are nouns or footnotes? You need to treat them grammatically in this case. If your sources of information have three or more authors, use et al (which means others) after the first one. IEEE formatting rules don’t allow you to provide publication dates or mention the authors of used sources within your text, except where their names are integral to the right understanding of a full sentence. Ensure that in-text citation and reference list numbers match. That’s because editing them may require renumbering your entire list.
Formatting your reference list
Put a numbered list of references at the end of your research paper and make sure that it contains all the necessary detailed of sources. Its entries should be in the order you cite sources in the text (from the lowest to the highest) to submit a good work. Don’t use an alphabetical order by titles or authors.
How to use IEEE quotes?
Students use direct quotes to back up their major arguments by showing the exact phrases and words of authors. To format them correctly, enclose all quotes in double quotation marks and give citations in standard square brackets either after them or after authors’ names in addition to page numbers.
There are both long and short quotes. When using longer quotes (they consist of three or more lines), use block quotations and set a block of your quoted text as a separate paragraph. Use small font sizes for them and indent them from both margins. After quotations, give in-text citations in square brackets and write down the page numbers of your sources from where you took quotes phrases or words.
Paraphrasing in IEEE
When paraphrasing in your piece of writing, you express the facts or ideas that you find in other sources in different words, and that’s why you need to give references. Give citation numbers right after them.
For paraphrases, students don’t need to state page numbers. You can still use them along with citations in your text or in a reference list if you need to refer to a specific idea or theory in used sources. This is how you enable targeted readers to find specific information. When it comes to longer sections of books, articles, or other sources of information, they don’t require any page number.
When to give page numbers?
When formatting your IEEE paper, provide them in all in-text citation when quoting directly if you want to impress professors. It’s not necessary to give them when:
- Referring to the entire work;
- Summarizing or paraphrasing a longer section;
- Sources are only one page long.
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