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IEEE Citation Formats- Basic Formatting Rules & Examples

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IEEE Citation Formats
 John Luther   Published On Oct 12, 2020 | Updated on Jul 7, 2023  Assignment  0

No academic assignment is ever complete without appropriate citations. And citing sources is quite a complicated task among high school and college students. It can take weeks to cite each source in the right format. Anyway, out of all the other formats, the IEEE citation format is the most popular one, irrespective of the type of assignment you are working on. Most of you may end up losing sleep in an attempt to follow this format for citations. So, here is a simple guide you can take a look at to understand the basic rules of IEEE format citation. Let’s begin.

What Is the IEEE Citation Format?

IEEE has got its name from the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, which is a professional organization supporting multiple branches of computer science, engineering and information technology. Besides publishing magazines, journals and conference proceedings, this organization also makes standards for a wide variety of industries out there.

As far as the citations are concerned, it includes in-text citations that are numbered in square brackets. These in-text citations refer to the full citation as listed in the reference list at the end of your document. You have to organize the reference list numerically rather than alphabetically. There are several online IEEE citation format generators available. You can use these to get the format right hassle-free in your academic document.

How To Cite in IEEE Format Without Citation Generator Tool?

Speaking of citations, there are two parts to it. First are the in-text citation, and the second one is the reference list. Here are the rules for writing both the parts of IEEE citations with the utmost precision.

IEEE Format In Text Citation Rules

Unlike other citation formats, IEEE doesn’t ask you to mention an author’s name, the number of pages used, or publication date in the in-text citation. It refers to the source through a number placed in a square bracket. This number corresponds to the entire citation in your reference list. You can use an IEEE format citation generator or machine if you find it complex to implement the following rules initially. The rules of writing in-text citations according to IEEE style are:

  • Use brackets for the in-text citations within the line of text. Also, put a space before the first bracket.
  • Number each source as you cite them in your paper. Use that number whenever you have to cite that particular source throughout the document.
  • List each number separately if you have to cite multiple sources at once. Use a comma or a hyphen to separate each number within their respective brackets.

IEEE In-Text Citation Format Example

  • …as shown by Brown [4], [5]; as mentioned earlier [2], [4]–[7], [9]; Smith [4] and Brown and Jones [5]; Wood et al.[7]

Additional Tip: You must et al. in case of three or more names that you intend to use in the citations.

  • …end of my research findings [13].
  • Williams [2] has argued that…
  • Multiple recent studies [3], [4], [18] have suggested that…

IEEE Format Reference List Rules

The reference list is usually at the end of your document. It consists of all the citations for all the sources that you have used throughout the document. You need to list all the references numerically and in the order that you have arranged the citations in the rest of your document. The rules for writing the reference list are:

  • Adjust the title of your Reference List in either center or left alignment at the top of the page.
  • Include a hanging intent for each reference in the list
  • The format for writing the author's name is the first initial, last name.
  • List the title of your work within quotation marks.
  • List the title of a journal or article in italics.

IEEE Reference List Format Example

How to Cite Different Sources In IEEE Style?

You may have to use different types of sources while writing your I.T. or engineering assignment. The examples below will help you cite each source in the IEEE format appropriately. Remember, you can always opt for an IEEE format citation maker if you don’t have enough time to invest in this task. Now let’s take a look at how to cite the most common sources in the IEEE format.

IEEE citation format for websites

First Name Initial(s) Last Name. “Page Title.” Website Title. Web Address (retrieved Date Accessed).


  1. Jones. “Global Warming is real.” (accessed Oct. 5, 2019).

IEEE citation format for books

  1. K. Author, "Title of a chapter in the book," in Title of His Published Book, xth ed. the City of Publisher, (only U.S. State), Country: Abbrev. of Publisher, year, ch. x, sec. x, pp. xxx–xxx.


  1. Horn and B. Klaus, Machine Learning. Cambridge, MA, U.K.: MIT Press, 1983.

IEEE citation format for a conference paper

  1. K. Author, “Title of paper,” presented at the Abbreviated Name of Conf., City of Conf., Abbrev. State, Country, Month and day(s), year, Paper number.


  1. Jones, M.C. Williams and P. McGuire, “Analytical placement methods for sparse arrays,” presented at the 22ndESA Antenna Workshop, the Netherlands, Oct. 15-18, 2015.

Wrapping Up,

You can always consult with your professors to know more about how to add a citation from IEEE in the endnote format. Check out other online examples for a better idea. Implement the rules as discussed above and complete the citations within your deadlines. If required, you can get help, but don't skip citations no matter what. Doing so may bring down the overall quality of your paper.

Need Help With The Citations Like APA, MLA, Harvard, & Oxford?

We’re here for you

Citing sources can be overwhelming, especially if you already have multiple tasks at hand. Thus, our citation specialists are here to help you out. We are well-versed with all the referencing formats included in the USA curriculum, such as APA, IEEE, Harvard, Oxford, etc. Tell us about the format you want us to follow while citing the sources and we will do it the right time. The benefits of availing our services are:

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What are you waiting for? Place an order now and get your referencing done easily. Our support team is active round the clock for you. Give us a call or chat with us if you have any queries regarding our services.

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