To acknowledge someone’s research paper, you have to cite that work. In other words, you give information on this very paper in your annotated bibliography (or reference list). As usual, style guides or manuals define a special format for citing a source referred to in paper. Of course, certain disciplines argue different styles, so chemistry students in most cases are required to use ACS (American Chemical Society) citation style.

Referencing in ACS for Journal Articles

The basic form for ACS referencing as follows: Author’s last name-first initial period-Title of article-abbreviation for journal title-year-volume number-pages period.
As you can see below in ACS citation style example, the title of any article is desirable for finding it (but can be neglected by some journals; if there are multiple authors, they are separated by a semi-colon: Franks, T.; Lott, L. Ion Interchange Colophony Used in Nuclear Excessive Disposal. Environ. Sci. Technol. 2004, 96, 133-145.
In journals published with ACS referencing, you should capitalize words from the article title which pursuits the original publication. In other entries the main words are capitalized only.

ACS Citation Style for Books and Patents

According to ACS citation styles guidelines, the book form has some differences from the previous one: Author’s last name-first initial period-second initial period-Title of Book-First Letter of Significant Words (capitalized)-Publisher-Place of Publication-year-p or pp number period.
ACS citation sample: Howard, B. K.; Freedman, O. Carbon Quality in Coal Strata; Sons &Wiley: New York, 1991; p 73.
Referencing in ACS for patents requires:

  • Author’s last name
  • first initial period
  • second initial period
  • Patent Title with Significant Words Capitalized period
  • Patent number
  • date period.

ACS citation style example: Crams, N.T., Conversion of Bibliographic Information into Citation Format. U.S. Patent 8,003,627, Sep 22, 2006.

In-Text Citing with ACS referencing

ACS citation style guidelines state that references may be cited in two ways: by number or by author name.
There are two ACS citation samples “by number”:
The enantioface diversity influences the reaction framework and on the construction of the chiral assistant;
The enantioface diversity influences the reaction framework and on the construction of the chiral assistant.2

Compare previous samples with ACS citation style example “by author”:

The enantioface diversity influences the reaction framework and on the construction of the chiral assistant (Andres et al., 1997).
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Comments (9)

  • Jackelyn Hoover Posted: October 16, 2011 in 5:03 am

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  • Baber G. Posted: February 24, 2012 in 2:40 pm

    Now I see that ACS citation style is not so difficult to use as I thought it to be! And all this thanks to your post on American Chemical Society citation style. I’m sure I’ve coped with the reference section perfectly!

  • Lesley Mitchell Posted: March 14, 2012 in 3:37 am

    Truly a good lesson on ACS citation style! This is the clearest explanation on this citation style I’ve found online. Thanks))))