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IEEE Style

About the IEEE style

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) style is a commonly used reference management style in the technical field. The IEEE style is a numeric system consisting of two parts, the in-text citation and a numerically arranged reference list.

  • The source is acknowledged within the body of the text with a citation number in square brackets.
  • Full details of the same source in a reference list at the end of the document. The reference list should only enlist sources explicitly cited in the main text.

The following pages of this guide will show examples of IEEE references. For more examples in addition to those listed in this guide, we recommend:

General guidelines

  • According to IEEE recommendations, you should avoid referring to unpublished sources when published documents on the same subject are available.
  • You should always cite "first-hand", i.e., referring to the original document rather than using excerpts from its text reported in a later publication. 
  • If no author or editor is given, move the title to the author position.
  • For sources published in the United States, provide the State abbreviation (e.g., CA for California) as well as the name of the country in the reference.

Why do you have to cite?

  • To show the reader what material your claims and arguments are based on 
  • To put your reader in the position to verify your work and be able to trust your sources
  • To provide the reader a broader understanding of the topic 
  • To put your work in a context
  • To give authors recognition for their ideas 
  • Avoid plagiarism

Reference management software

There are a number of reference management software to choose from, e.g., EndNote, Mendeley, and Zotero. In addition to getting help with the in-text citation and getting automatically generated reference lists, these can be used to import, save and organize your sources. Read more and get started with a reference management software here.

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