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Chemistry: ACS Citations

Tips and resources for research related to chemistry.

Why Cite?

Citation Needed When you use information (data, images, ideas, quotations, etc.) in your papers, presentations, videos, etc., you need to reference the original source. In other words, provide details about where the information came from:

+ To give credit where it's due.

+ To help your audience find the same sources (which could help their research). 

+ To show there is support to back up the ideas you present. 

+ To establish your authority and credibility. Citing makes you look smart and trustworthy because you show your audience that you did your research and that got information from reliable sources.

+To avoid plagiarism.

Image courtesy of xkcd

ACS Style

Use the American Chemical Society (ACS) style for your chemistry citations.

Citations Have Two Parts.

  1. In-Text Citation: Always refer to your source at the point at which you use an idea, fact, or wording that isn’t your own. ACS allows three styles of in-text citation. 
  • Superscript numbers. ¹ 
  • Italic numbers (2). 
  • Parenthetical with author name and year (Severns, 2022).
  1. Bibliographic Citation: This is the complete citation with all the details about the source. It goes into a list at the back of your paper, with the citations in order by number or (if using parenthetical in-text citations), authorʻs name. 

Sample Citations


Field, S. Culinary Reactions: The Everyday Chemistry of Cooking; Chicago Review Press: Chicago, IL, 2012.

In-Text citation: (Field, 2012)

Book Chapter

Company, M.; Karsa, D. R. Vehicle Cleaning. In Handbook for Cleaning/Decontamination of Surfaces; Elsevier, 2007, pp. 439-458. DOI: 10.1016/B978-044451664-0/50013-9.

Parenthetical In-Text Citation: (Company and Karsa, 2007)

Journal Article

Oyedele, A. O.; Gbolade, A. A.; Sosan, M. B.; Adewoyin, F. B.; Soyelu, O. L.; Orafidiya, O. O. Formulation of an Effective Mosquito-Repellent Topical Product from Lemongrass Oil. Phytomedicine 20029 (3), 259–262.

Parenthetical In-Text Citation: (Oyedele et al., 2007)


Mundy, B. A New Simple Process Extracts Valuable Compounds From Seawater. SciTechDaily, December 14, 2022. (accessed 2020-02-21).

Parenthetical In-Text Citation: (Mundy, 2022)

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