A Comprehensive Writing Guide of IEEE Format

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) is the world’s largest technical organization that aims to advance technology for humankind. EEE is the leading institution that all computer science students look up to for formatting their research papers since 1963. Up till now, IEEE has contributed over 4 million conference papers in the explore library.

Its standard format is mandatory to follow for students for quality research. Many students struggle in following the format guidelines, that’s why we have made this comprehensive guide to simplify the process and enhance the quality of your conference paper.

Who Uses The IEEE Format?

  • IEEE Format for citations is widely followed by students studying in most technical fields like computer sciences, electronic engineering, telecommunication, programming, and computer engineering.
  • Professional researchers, teachers, and professors also use IEEE format.
  • It is popular for publishing technical research papers in journals, magazines, and conference proceedings.

Why is the IEEE Format Important?

It’s a commonly acceptable formatting style that evaluates the quality of the research. IEEE format judges the conciseness, consistency, and accuracy of the content. It makes the research presentable and acceptable by the professionals of the tech field. It enhances the credibility of the researchers and demonstrates professionalism of writers. Following the IEEE textbook citation helps in avoiding confusions and duplication.

The author shared “When I first wrote a research paper, the citations and IEEE format left me confused. I struggled with following the guidelines and that caused my research paper to get rejected and flawed. I learned the format details the hard way but that paid off when my paper got published in IEEE journal. It’s important to get a grip on IEEE style because it really uplifts the research papers to a new level.”


Quick Facts Of IEEE

460,000Members in more than 90 countries.
60%Members belong to The United States
344 Section In ten geographical regions worldwide.
2,709Chapters that unite local members with similar technical interests.
3,635Students branch at colleges and universities worldwide.
4,194Student branch chapters of IEEE technical societies.
639Affinity groups such as young professional, women in engineering, and life members of IEEE
Over 6 millionDocuments in the IEEE xplore digital library. 
1,081Projects underdevelopment 
Over 200Published transactions, journals, and magazines. 
2000Sponsored conferences and events.
4 millionConference papers contributed to IEEE Xplore since 1936
200,000New papers are added to the library annually. 

What is IEEE Format?

IEEE is a professional technical organization dedicated to advancing technology for the betterment of humankind. IEEE format is the widely famous referencing format that is followed by computer science and other tech students all over the world. This format helps students style their research papers and assignments to bring out a professional look. 

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Many students find this format quite challenging. In this manual below, we have detailed the IEEE format guide to make it easy for you to follow. 

Title Page 

Having an impressive title page is a challenge that many students face. The title page of your assignment or essay will introduce the readers to the main discussion title. It has all the essential information a reader might desire before reading the paper. 

  • You are required to put the topic title on the first page, centered at the top, and the font size should be 24pt. 
  • After the line break, the author’s name, author’s affiliation, city and country location, and the author’s emails are added to the title page. 

IEEE Abstract Format

Writing catchy abstracts is tough due to its brief nature. The IEEE format for abstract starts from the new page, and the word ‘Abstract’ should be bold and centered on the page.

  • In this section, you need to summarize the main topic, potential findings, and research results. 
  • The length of the abstract should be 250 words, and it needs to be covered in one paragraph.
  • The IEEE format for abstract helps the reader understand your research method, research participants, data analysis approach and the primary key findings. 

Index Terms

You are required to index all the technical terms and acronyms that you’ve used in your research paper. You also have to list down the terminologies and most used acronyms from the supporting research that you’ve added in your paper as evidence. 

The primary purpose of indexing the terms is to give the reader an idea of what certain words or terms mean so that they can understand your research paper better. 


This section lists all the symbols or names you have given to the professional terms. You are required to provide proper definitions for all of those symbols and names so that the reader can understand what those terminologies mean in the context of the paper. 


Writing a compelling introduction is a big challenge in IEEE format. Many students fail to write a compelling introduction. Introduction refers to the detailed description of the topic and what is the main point of discussion. 

The author needs to add background information and the history of research on the subject. You can briefly explain the key findings of the previous study to give an idea of the topic’s significance in the field. In this section, you also need to reveal your thesis statement and what your analysis will be. 


The main body of your research paper is going to discuss all the relevant information and logical evidence that you’ve gathered to support your thesis statement. This section will all be written in 10pt font size, and the text should appear in two columns. 

The body of the paper should be divided into sections and subsections, and all the body paragraphs need to have a topic sentence. 

The headings are going to be properly formatted according to the rules of IEEE format. This section will include all the relevant figures, equations, and tables, and all of them need to be numbered in consecutive order and centered in a column. 

Go through some interesting topic sentences for paragraph examples to have a clear idea of how to write this section engagingly.


In this section, you need to summarize all your key findings and a closing statement that will state the final judgment based on your findings. It also includes further research opportunities and implications of your research topic. 

It should be a short paragraph that touches on each aspect of the study discussed in the paper to give the reader an idea of what the paper is about. The conclusion shouldn’t have a new thought or idea that hasn’t been discussed in the relevance of the main body. 


The appendix is a section that comes after the closing statement, it includes all the relevant information that is too long to add to the body of the research paper. 

It mainly contains the raw data, interview transcripts, and other relevant sources of information for someone who wants to find out more about your topic. 

Appendixes are essential because they help establish your credibility as the writer and uplift your professionalism in the papers.

According to IEEE format, the appendix should be formatted using either letters or Roman numerals. If you have multiple appendices, they will be named with the help of roman numerals, but if you only have one appendix, they will remain unnamed and unnumbered. 

The appendices should have a proper heading and need to be formatted in the standard style of font and size. 


This is a crucial section for every research paper that shows gratitude to all the people and sources that helped you throughout your research paper. 

You need to include the title and the name of the individual or any other data sources you used with a one-line description of their contributions to your research. 

For example, we thank Dr. John Williams for providing us with valuable information regarding the technologies being implemented in the surgical studies mentioned in section 2.5 of this research paper. Acknowledgement is also written in paragraph form with a bold heading. 


This is one of the most critical sections in every research paper, and its formatting is quite challenging for students. References refer to citing all the sources you extracted information from or used the results of in order to support your thesis statement. 

According to the standard IEEE format, all references should be numbered, and every source entry should be separate. It’s prohibited to use the same reference number of a group of IEEE citations. You need to cite only those references that are directly employed in your work. 


Footnotes are an optional section that might not be a part of every research paper in IEEE format. What is a footnote? A footnote containing additional information, an explanation, a description, or a personal comment related to the main text of the body? Footnotes are added at the bottom of the page, and they give readers an idea of what some complex terms or acronyms used in the text actually mean. 

In this format, all the footnotes are numbered and followed in consecutive order within the research paper body. Footnotes can be added for background information on an event that has a direct relation to an event or an individual in the main body of the paper. 

Difficult words or phrases from other languages are explained in footnotes. According to the IEEE format, footnotes must be numbered, and those numbers should always be placed after punctuation marks, including parenthesis, commas, colons, and periods. 

What is the IEEE Citations Format?

Now that you have a clear idea of what an IEEE paper, let’s move on to the format. Just like how every academic writing requires strict formatting, this format guidelines should also be followed. It had a different citation format than other formatting styles. 

The primary difference students found in these styles is that in IEEE, they need to give numbers to each citation that will be written inside brackets. While citing sources, you need to keep the following elements in mind:

  • A number of the in-text citations
  • author’s surname and initials. 
  • The full title of the research work. 
  • Place of publication 
  • Date of the publication 
  • Volume and edition
  • Page numbers

These elements will be followed in every type of citation. Let’s look at them one by one to learn more about how to cite different sources.

Citing A Book by a Single Author

If you are citing a book that was written by a single author, the following IEEE format will be applicable.


[Corresponding number] Author. Book title. Location: Publishing company, year, page numbers you extracted information from. 

IEEE paper format example

[2] D.Wilson. Aeronautical Engineering and Management. Manhattan, New York, USA: Warner Publishing House, 1998, pp. 167-170.

Citing Book by Two or More Authors

If two authors wrote the book you have taken information from, the following IEEE format will be applied.


[Corresponding number] Author 1, Author 2, and Author 2. Book title. Location: Publishing company, year, page numbers you used in your work.

IEEE Format Example

[13] B.W. Purson, F. Jungrier, and T. Kim. Challenges of Tourism in Asia. Seoul. South Korea: SNU Publications, 2014, pp. 285-304.

Citing an Article from a Journal

If you’ve taken information from an article or research paper, the following IEEE format will be followed. 


[Corresponding number] Author. “Article Title”. Journal title, vol., page number, date. 


[5]N.Mathai, and T.Phil. “The fundamentals of Biotechnology”. Vol.33, pp.78-90, Dec, 2009.

Citing A Newspaper Article

If you’ve used a column or an article from a newspaper as your source of information. The following format will be applicable. 


[Corresponding number] Author. “Article title”. Newspaper title. Pp, date.


[3]G. Hamilton. “The political changes over the past decade”. The USA Times, P. 3, Oct 8, 2019.

Citing an E-Book

If you’ve used an ebook as your source of information, it will be cited as follows in IEEE format. 


[Corresponding number]Author surname with first initials. (Year, month, and day of publication). Book title. (Edition). [Type of MediumMedium]. Vol. (Issue). Available: URL (Date of accessing the source).

IEEE Paper format example

[4] H.J Graham. (1999, June 1). Thermodynamics and Information Theory with Application. (3rd edition). [Online]. 27(5). Available: http://website URL [May 21, 2017]

Citing a Website

If you have gathered information from a website, you have to follow the below IEEE format.


[Corresponding number] Website. “Title.” Available: complete URL, date updated, [accessed date].

IEEE Format Example

[7]Phys.libretexts.org. “Fundamentals of Thermodynamics.” Available: Website URL, Dec.17, 2008. [April 11, 2020].

Citing a Podcast

If you took essential points of discussion from someone’s Podcast or online interview source, you will need to follow the below format.


[corresponding number] Author’s initials. Author’s Surname, “Title,” Publication Title, Year published. [MediumMedium]. Available: source URL. [Accessed date].

IEEE Citations Format Example

[9]R. Johnson. “Feminism in modernity is labeled as Toxic culture”, 2018. [Podcast]. Available: website URL. [Aug 10, 2022].

If you are a newbie in the tech field and struggling with the format of IEEE, you are in the right place. Feel free to get in touch with a reliable assessment writing service for this type of academic writing guidance.

The BIGGEST Challenge of IEEE Format That You Might Face

Writing research papers in this format comes with a big challenge that intimidates students. Before you get discouraged and frustrated over formatting style, the first thing you must know is that studying is tough in every field. It would help if you were courageous in order to make mistakes and learn from them so that you do not repeat them in the future.

The biggest challenge of the IEEE format is the In-Text citations used within the text. This feature is surprising for the students who were previously following the MLA, APA, or Chicago format paper style. Many students make mistakes while using the in-text citation and find it quite challenging.

In-text citations are done by putting a number inside brackets with information from another source. IEEE formats have two main components: In-text citations and the main reference list. In-text citations are mentioned within the text and then cited in the references section with the help of that corresponding number in brackets.

Example: According to J. Williams, the theoretical knowledge of computer science is as important as the practical approach to teaching computing[1].

How To Overcome This Challenge?

In the above-mentioned example, the number in brackets is the citation, and it will be cited in the reference section with the same number. To overcome the challenge of text citations, students must practice it often and start quoting the references within the text.

It would be helpful if students kept checking the number of citations and note all the numbers in a different Word document to keep a record. Students must know the author of the source, the publication date and the title of the research paper or source you are using. It will make it easy for you to add in-text citations.


Resources For Best Learning About It

If you are looking for more resources regarding IEEE format then make sure to check out the Xplore digital library. It provides access to more than 6 million research papers. You can access them in order to get an idea how IEEE style is used in published papers.

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End Note

IEEE format is a commonly used formatting style for students of computer sciences and other relevant tech fields. Students might encounter challenges while following such a specified format. We have answered all the students’ queries regarding IEEE abstract format and citations and guided them step by step. Using the solutions mentioned in the above sections, students will be able to overcome all the challenges that might be encountered during the process of formatting their work.

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