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EGR 186: Introduction to Engineering Design

A guide for students EGR 186

IEEE Citation Style

Engineering students at NAU are usually asked to cite their sources using IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) style. The IEEE is a professional organization supporting many branches of engineering, computer science, and information technology. In addition to publishing journals, magazines, and conference proceedings, IEEE also makes standards for a wide variety of industries.

IEEE citation style includes in-text citations, numbered in square brackets, which refer to the full citation listed in the reference list at the end of the paper. The reference list is organized numerically, not alphabetically. 

Here are some style guides that will help you format your citations:

In-text Citations

It is not necessary to mention an author's name, pages used, or date of publication in the in-text citation. Instead, refer to the source with a number in a square bracket, e.g. [1], that will then correspond to the full citation in your reference list. Citations should be numbered in the order in which they appear. No distinction is made between electronic and print sources in in-text citations.

  • Place bracketed citations within the line of text, before any punctuation, with a space before the first bracket.
  • Number your sources as you cite them in your paper. Once you hae referred to a source and given it a number, continue to use that number as you cite that source throughout the paper.
  • When citing multiple sources at once, list each number separately, in its own brackets, using a comma or a dash between numbers: [1], [3], [5] or [1] - [5].

In-text citations can look like this:

"... end of the line for my research [13]."

"This theory was first put forward in 1987 [1]."

"Scholtz [2] has argued that..."

"Several recent studies [3], [4], [15], [16], have suggested that..."

"For example, see [7]."


Reference List

To finish citing sources, a numbered list of references must be provided at the end of the paper. The list is comprised of the sequential enumerated citations, with details, beginning with [1], and is not alphabetical. 


Citation Managers

Scientific Writing

Citation Reference Books