How to Write References for Your Research Paper in IEEE Format Easily and Quickly

IEEE Reference Format

Let me take you back to a time when I was knee-deep in my research, juggling multiple papers and deadlines. Every time I sat down to format my references, it felt like I was embarking on an arduous journey fraught with potential mistakes. I’d meticulously pore over style guides, ensuring each comma was in its right place and each citation followed the correct format. It was draining, to say the least.

Then, one day, a colleague introduced me to Mendeley. With just a few clicks, I was able to import, organize, and cite my references seamlessly. No more manual entry, no more formatting headaches. My productivity soared, and I could focus more on the substance of my research rather than getting bogged down in formatting minutiae.

But here’s the thing: even with these powerful tools at our disposal, understanding the intricacies of different referencing styles is still crucial. Whether it’s IEEE, APA, MLA, or any other format, knowing how each looks and functions allows us to choose the most appropriate style for our papers and ensure consistency throughout.

In the realm of academic research, citing references accurately is of paramount importance. Properly formatted references not only enhance the credibility of your research but also provide readers with the means to delve deeper into the sources you have utilized.

For researchers and students following the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) citation style, mastering the art of crafting references in this format is crucial. In this article, we present a comprehensive guide that will help you navigate the nuances of writing references in the IEEE format efficiently and effortlessly. From understanding the basic citation elements to utilizing online tools that streamline the process, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s delve into the world of IEEE referencing and equip ourselves with the skills to cite our sources with ease and precision.


When you are writing a research paper, your opinions and ideas certainly get attraction from other researchers who are doing research in the same domain.  If they want to glean the source of your references then your reference section plays a critical role in guiding them to the origin of the references.

 In the context of your work, the reader gets the benefit of the discovery of different ideas from different researchers, who have already explored the same domain.

In-Text Citations in IEEE Format

In-text citations are references within the text of an academic or professional document that indicate the source of information used. They help readers locate the full citation in the reference list/bibliography. In-text citations typically include the author’s last name and the publication year (for most styles) or other relevant information (e.g., page number for direct quotations).

IEEE uses a numerical system for in-text citations. Each source is assigned a unique number, which is used in square brackets.

Example: [1] or [3-5] for multiple sources.

It’s essential to follow the specific guidelines of the chosen citation style to ensure accurate and consistent in-text citations throughout the document. In-text citations not only give credit to the original authors but also help readers identify the sources behind the information presented.

Before Adding  References to your Research Paper

Whenever you read the material for your writing or research, be sure to include a complete description of the publication of any relevant text you read in the list of references you maintain for the research work you are carrying out.
These particulars should contain:
* Exact Title of the content {specifying as is the capital letters, abbreviations, quotations if they are used in the Title}.
* Name, Surname (s) and Initials (s) of all the writer (s) without omitting any author details.
* If the paper is published in a journal then the name, volume, year, and page numbers of the journal in which the article is published.
* If it is a  News Paper Document, the newspaper Title and the Volume number along with the date
* If it is a Chapter of the Book, then  the Title of the chapter, page numbers,  Editors and Publisher (s) of the book  along with the   year of publication
* If it is a  Book, then the Title of the book,  Editors and Publisher (s) of the book along with the edition and year of publication.

Quoting Sources in a Research paper in the Reference Section

In a research paper,  a Reference Section is a brief reference to the source of published information that will provide sufficient data to allow readers to locate a copy of the source.   The format of the resources included in a reference depends on the format of the material (books, articles, electronic documents, etc.) mentioned.

How to cite a Book Chapter in my Reference Section?

  •  IEEE Style: Book Chapters

Standard format for citation

[#] A. A. Author of Part, “Title of chapter or part,” in Title: Subtitle of book, Edition, Vol., A. Editor, Ed. Place of publication: Publisher, Year, pp. inclusive page numbers.

Example: Chapter in an edited book

[1] A. Harris and M. Stellings, “Insights into the fruit quality assessment using machine learning” in  Sustainable Agriculture, Vol. 60, Agriculture in Information Technology, M.D.Caper, Ed. San Diego: Abc Press, 2018, pp. 130-170.

How to cite a Book in my Reference Section?

  • IEEE Style: Books

a. Authored work:

[#] A. A. Author, Title: Subtitle (in italics), Edition(if not the first), Vol.(if a multivolume work). Place of publication: Publisher, Year, page number(s) (if appropriate).


[5] U. J. Gary,., S. G. WhiteField, Agriculture Processes and Information Technology. San Francisco, United States, Morgan Kaufmann Publishers, 2018.

How to cite a Scientific/Technical Report in my Reference Section?

  •  IEEE Style : Scientific / Technical report

[15] K. E. Bose and C.M. Chan, “A new machine learning methodology for plant pathology”  Agriculture National Laboratory, , San Francisco, United States, Tech. Rep. 516-578-BB, 2018.

How to cite a Patent in my Reference Section?

  • IEEE Style: Patent 

[16] K. Bennet and A. Rodrigues, “Machine learning based object identification method ” U. S. Patent  99,860,040,20 January 14, 2018.

How to cite Conference Papers in my Reference Section?

  •  IEEE Style: Conference Papers

a. Conference Paper in Print Proceedings:

[#] A. Author of  Paper and B. Author of Paper, “Title of paper,” in Title of Published Proceedings: Proceedings of the Title of Conf.: Subtitle of the conference, Month Date, Year, Location, A. Editor and B. Editor, Eds. Place of publication: Publisher, Year. pp. inclusive page numbers.


[1] M. Vijay and K. San, “Machine Learning approach to Liver Cancer Treatment” in Machine Learning Methods in Medicine: Proc. of the 5th Int. Conf. on  Machine Learning Methods in Medicine, ICMLM 2017, Seattle, WA, USA, November 8-12, 2017, J. Hanos, W. Bremen, M. Donald, Eds. Berlin: Springer, 2017. pp. 105-17.

b. Conference Paper from the Internet:

[#] A. Author of  Paper and B. Author of Paper,  “Title of paper,” in Proceedings of the Title of Conf.: Subtitle of the conference, Month Date, Year, Location[Format]. Place of publication: Publisher, Year. Available: Database Name (if appropriate), internet address. [Accessed: date of access].


[3] J. John, “Machine learning approach to Fruit Quality analysis” in Proc. of the 2017 1st Int. Conf. on Advances in Information Technology, AIT 2017, 19-21 April 2017, Kathmandu, Nepal [Online]. Available: IEEE Xplore, [Accessed: 10 Jan. 2018].

c. Conference Proceedings:

[#] A. Editor and B. Editor, Eds., Title of Conf.: Subtitle of the conference, Month Date, Year, Location (optional). Place of publication: Name of  Publisher, Year.


[5] K. M. Folley and M. S. Adams, Eds., Machine learning in Medical Science Technology: Conf. on Medical science and Information Technology, Jan 20-22, 2017, New  Delhi, India: NewAge Academic, 2017.

How to Cite Internet Documents in my Reference Section?

  • IEEE Style: Internet Documents

Standard format for citation
[#] A. Author, “Document title,” Webpage name, Source/production information, Date of internet publication. [Format]. Available: internet address. [Accessed: Date of access].


[1] “Impact of FATCA on client on boarding”, 2017. [Online]. Available:  [Accessed: Mar. 24, 2018].
[2] Vijay S Rajpurohit, “How to write Results Section of your Research Paper”,  March 23, 2018. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: March 25, 2018].

How to cite Journal Articles in my Reference Section?

  • IEEE Style: Journal Articles

Standard format for citation

[#] A. A. Author of the article. “Title of article,” Title of Journal, vol. #, no. #, pp. page number/s, Month year.

Journal articles

[2] K.S. Edwin, ” Pomegranate Image Analytics: An analyst Perspective ” IEEE Trans. Data Analytics, vol. 11, pp. 31-43, Feb. 2018.

  •  IEEE Style: E-journals

Standard format for citation

[#] A. Author, “Title of Article,” Title of Journal, vol., no., p. page numbers, month year. [Format]. Available: Database Name (if appropriate), internet address. [Accessed: date of access].


[1] H. Avardo and A. Narian, ” Pomegranate Fruit Image  Segmentation Using  Bayesian Computation,” IEEE Transactions on Image Processing, vol. 11, no. 8, pp. 265-77, 2018. [Online]. Available: IEEE Xplore, [Accessed Jan. 10, 2018].

Tools for managing IEEE Style Citations

Citation management softwares:

Citation management software simplifies the process of organizing and formatting citations according to the IEEE style. These tools enable researchers, academics, and writers to seamlessly manage their references and generate accurate IEEE citations effortlessly.

Examples of popular citation management software for IEEE style:

  1. Zotero: Zotero is a free, open-source citation management software that allows users to collect, organize, and cite sources in the IEEE style. Example: Zotero can automatically generate IEEE-style citations for journal articles, conference papers, patents, and more.
  2. Mendeley: Mendeley is a reference manager with a vast research database that facilitates seamless citation management in the IEEE style. Example: Mendeley offers citation plugins for popular word processors, making it easy to insert and format IEEE-style citations within documents.

Online citation generators:

Online citation generators are valuable tools that assist users in generating properly formatted IEEE-style citations for various sources. These web-based tools save time and effort, ensuring accuracy and consistency in citations.

Examples of popular online citation generators for IEEE style:

  1. Citation Machine: Citation Machine offers citation generation for various source types, including books, journal articles, conference papers, and websites, all adhering to the IEEE style. Example: Users can input the required details of a conference paper, and Citation Machine will generate an accurate IEEE-style citation.
  2. EasyBib: EasyBib provides a user-friendly platform for creating IEEE-style citations for a wide range of sources, from academic journals to technical reports. Example: Users can input the relevant information of an online article, and EasyBib will produce the correct IEEE-style citation.

Library databases with citation features:

Many academic libraries offer online databases with citation features that facilitate citation export in the IEEE style. These databases provide access to a wealth of academic sources, making the citation process more convenient.

Examples of library databases with citation features for IEEE style:

  1. IEEE Xplore Digital Library: The IEEE Xplore Digital Library is a comprehensive database of scientific and technical content. It offers citation export options in the IEEE style. Example: Users can download IEEE-style citations for conference papers, journal articles, and technical reports directly from IEEE Xplore.
  2. ACM Digital Library: The ACM Digital Library provides access to computing-related research and offers citation export functionalities in the IEEE style. Example: Users can easily export IEEE-style citations for conference papers and journal articles accessed through the ACM Digital Library.

By utilizing citation management software, online citation generators, and library databases with IEEE-style citation features, writers and researchers can streamline their citation process, ensuring the accuracy and adherence to the specific guidelines of the IEEE style. These tools empower users to focus on their research and writing, confident that their citations align with the rigorous standards of the IEEE citation format.

IEEE Manuscript Templates for Conference Proceedings

Within the IEEE conference templates, there is instructional content provided to assist with composing and formatting conference papers. Before submitting your conference paper, it is essential to remove all the instructional content to ensure compliance with submission requirements.

Click Here for IEEE Manuscript Templates.


Mastering the art of writing references in the IEEE format is a valuable skill that every researcher and student should possess. This article has provided a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the intricacies of IEEE referencing with ease and confidence.

By understanding the essential elements of IEEE citations, such as author names, titles, publication dates, and source details, you can now ensure that your research paper adheres to the highest academic standards. Remember to organize your reference list alphabetically and use consistent formatting throughout your document to maintain clarity and professionalism.

Furthermore, the article highlighted the advantages of using citation management tools, which significantly streamline the process of generating accurate references. Whether you choose a reference manager, citation generator, or online database, these tools can save you time and effort, allowing you to focus more on your research and analysis.

As you embark on your academic journey, adopting a meticulous approach to referencing not only showcases your commitment to academic integrity but also enables readers to trace your sources and delve deeper into the subject matter. Accurate and well-formatted references strengthen the credibility of your research and underscore your dedication to producing high-quality scholarly work.

By following the guidelines presented in this article and utilizing the available tools, you can write references for your research paper in IEEE format easily and quickly. Embrace the power of accurate citation and elevate the impact of your academic endeavors. Let your ideas and findings shine through with proper referencing, and contribute to the growing body of knowledge in your field. Happy writing and researching!

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you can use weblink as a reference in your research paper. While writing reference please add on which date you accessed last. This will be useful as web content keeps on updating by the owner of the website.

What is the best reference software to use when writing a research paper?

Following are the top reference writing software tools when writing a research paper
Article Galaxy Enterprise.
ReadCube Papers.

What is a cross-reference in a research paper?

A cross-reference is a reference to data that is present at another location within the same document.

Is it acceptable to have a research paper with no references?

No, it is not acceptable to have a research paper with no references. You may not have any previous work-related domain yet you need to refer to the works which are similar to your work.

How many references should I include in a research paper?

There is no limitation or restriction on the number of papers to be referenced in a research paper. It may range from at least 10 to a maximum of 20 in a research paper of 20 pages. However, the above numbers are not absolute values and can vary depending upon the judgement of the author.

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Dr. Vijay Rajpurohit
Author: Dr. Vijay Rajpurohit
Dr. Vijay Rajpurohit is a researcher in Computer Science. He loves to educate researchers and research scholars on Research Paper Writing, Thesis Writing, Research Grants, Patenting Research Work and the latest Research-related issues. You can reach him @ [email protected]