AMA Formatting Rules

Table of contents

What is AMA Citation Format?

One of the ways any student appears organized and credible in the presentation of academic paper is through proper citation. Different disciplines and institutions have settled on certain styles of citation for their papers. If you are a medical student, then the recommended style for your medical research paper is the AMA format of citation. A proper application of its general format is an excellent impression of an outstanding medical paper writing performance. 

AMA General Paper Format

AMA format is simple. Your paper should be double spaced, 1” margin around a page, 1/2” indentations, and numbering starts at the title page and placed at top right corner. 

Your supervisor will pay attention to the citations within your body as well as the reference at the end of your paper. Below is an AMA citation guide you could use. 

Citation in Body of Your Paper

Each source you use within your paper should be in proper numerical order with superscripts in Arabic numerals also 1, 2, 3… The digits need to be outside periods and commas and inside colons and semicolons (FAO.43). Do not use space whenever there is comma for multiple citations (3,4). For a closed series, join series with a hyphen (As reported previously, 12-15,27).

Citations in Your Reference Lists

Always remember that at the end of every academic paper, there is a reference list. For AMA, your citations need to be in the order with which you cited them within your essay. Use single spaces within your citations and double spaces between the citations.

Sample AMA Citation Format

By: Writer144311


Writer144311 has a background in marketing, technology, and business intelligence. S/he enjoys writing about data science, BI, new marketing trends and branding strategies. On TrustMyPaper s/he shares her practical experience through academic writing.

Request this writer

Citation of AMA Works

Whereas you might understand how to do your body and references list, you might find it essential to cite multiple academic sources, namely books, journals, online journals, and websites. 

Citing books

When citing books in AMA pay attention to whether you are citing one author, multiple authors up to six and seven authors onwards. Also, whether the book has an editor who needs citing within your copy.

Citing books with one author

Here, start with the last name, followed by an abbreviation other name or names (first and middle). No comma or period is separating the names. The book title and subtitle follows. Here, use a full colon in the case there is a subtitle. Capitalize the major words of both title, subtitle, italicize the title, and conclude this part with a period.  Add the volume number if applicable as Vol.4 (Use the word “Vol” followed with a period, no space and the number of the volume. Add an edition number where applicable in ordinal form as 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and so on. An “ed” follows this. It should appear as 2nd ed. What follows is town or state of publication separated by a comma as New York, USA. Move on to publisher name use it succinctly followed by a semicolon just before the year of publication. 

The reference should appear as below: 

Reference: American Medical Association. AMA Manual of Style. 10th ed. Oxford, England: Oxford Universtiy Press; 2007.

Citing book with multiple authors (up to six)

This is subject to change when there are more authors. Instead, separate the authors with names in the same format (last and abbreviation of the rest) and separate author names with a comma. Reference should appear as below:

Kolt GS, Andersen MB, eds. Psychology in the Physical and Manual Therapies
Edinburgh, Scotland: Churchill Livingstone; 2004.

For a book with multiple authors, use the first three authors’ names followed by “et al.” in the agreed format above followed by the rest as there as supposed to be. 

Citing book with an editor

When the person that takes credit is an editor but not an author. How do you do it? Write the name, as usual, the last name followed by an abbreviation of the other name or names, a comma, an "ed." The title in all-major words capital, the city of publication, a full colon, the publisher, a semicolon, the year of publication and a period. The reference should appear as follows:

Galanter M, ed. Services Research in the Era of Managed Care. New York, NY: Kluwer Academic/Plenum; 2001. 

Citation of a book by Institution

The book, when done by an organization, replace one of the above references with the name of the organization. Leave the rest as is. Reference should appear as follows:

World Health Organization. Injury: A Leading Cause of the Global Burden of Disease, 2000. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2002.

AMA citation for second or more edition

If the book is a new edition of a previous copy, maybe a second, third, or later version, reference should be as below.

Adkinson N, Yunginger J, Busse W, Bochner B, Holgate S, Middleton E, eds.  Middleton’s Allergy:  Principles and Practice.  6th ed.  St. Louis, MO:  Mosby; 2003.

Book Chapter AMA Citation

When specifying chapter, add an "In", a full colon, names of authors in usual formats, the title and subtitle of the chapter and edition number after the book title and subtitle and before the town and state of publication. AMA Reference format should be as below: 

Riegelman RK, Kirkwood B. Public health 101 :Healthy people--healthy populations. 2nd ed. Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning; 2015.73:95

Citing journals in AMA

You could come across journals when working on your medical research paper. Citing print and online journal AMA should be easy. For print, start with last name, no comma, and initial of first and middle, do not use "and" between the names. These are followed by the title and subtitle of article and title and subtitle of the journal. Title of the journal is italicized, and a full colon separates the title and subtitle of the article. Year of publication with semi-colon follows, then a volume number and issue number in brackets, and page number in the end. The reference on your AMA style paper should be as below:

Foley M, Prax B, Crowell R, Boone T. Effects of assistive devices on cardiorespiratory demands in older adults. Phys Ther. 1996;76(12):1313-1319.

If you accessed it online, add a link of the source, followed by “Published month date comma year period accessed month date comma year period. Should be as below:

Ramchandani, P., Wiggs, L., & Stores, G. (2000). A systematic review of treatments for settling problems and night waking in young children. BMJ. 2000;320(7229):209-213. 
Published January 22, 2000. Accessed September 24, 2008.

Citing Websites 

Here, you use the author name; last followed by initial of the rest as usual followed by the title of item cited or name of organization owning the site, the website's URL, the date of publish, date of update and date of access.

Reference should appear as below: 

Rainie L. The rise of the e-patient. Pew Research Center Internet and the American Life Project website.
October 7, 2009. Accessed January 11, 2012.

For no author should appear as below:

Air Pollution and Respiratory Health. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website Updated January 9, 2012. Accessed March 2, 2012

AMA Bibliography

A bibliography is a list of all AMA works cited on your academic medical paper. A bibliography in AMA should have the following:

The last name follows by initials of first and middle stuck together as in Jones, GM or Smith AD. This is followed by the title of the journal in title case a period then the year of publication. Later, it is followed by a semicolon the volume and issue in bracket followed by a full colon and range of pages of reference separated by a hyphen.

Reference should appear as: 

O'Keefe M, Coat S. Consulting parents on childhood obesity and implications for medical student learning. J Paediatr Child Health. 2009;45(10),573-576.

AMA Format Example

With all the above together, the result is a well-cited medical research paper with a good source cited appropriately and concluded with an excellent bibliography. 

How ready is your essay? Choose the stage you are at right now
What’s next and what’s missing?

How ready is your essay?