I'm use the TeX ACM Style in my thesis:


And cite references using \cite{}, but it's different of the new ACM style:

[Number] instead [Author Year]

How can I use [Author Year] like ACM Style?


Obs.: In ACM examples, the cite and reference styles are:


A paginated journal article [Abril and Plant 2007], an enumerated journal article [Cohen et al. 2007], a reference to an entire issue [Cohen 1996], a monograph (whole book) [Kosiur 2001], a monograph/whole book in a series (see 2a in spec. document) [Harel 1979], a divisible-book such as an anthology or...


Rafal Ablamowicz and Bertfried Fauser. 2007. CLIFFORD: a Maple 11 Package for Clifford Algebra Computations, version 11. (2007). Retrieved February 28, 2008 from http://math.tntech.edu/rafal/cliff11/index.html

Patricia S. Abril and Robert Plant. 2007. The patent holder’s dilemma: Buy, sell, or troll? Commun. ACM 50, 1 (Jan. 2007), 36–44. DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/1188913.1188915

  • Which document class do you use? And, is using the natbib citation-managent package an option for you?
    – Mico
    Commented Aug 21, 2013 at 4:30
  • \documentclass[12pt, a4paper]{article}, and I'm not using natbib.
    – Anderson
    Commented Aug 21, 2013 at 4:55

3 Answers 3


I believe you need to load the ACM-Reference-Format-Journals style to get citations and references in the form described in the excerpts you've posted. I.e., issue the command


instead of \bibliographystyle{acm}. If you don't already have this style file, go to the ACM LaTeX Style Guide webpage and download and unpack any one of the three zip files for authors (v2-acmsmall.zip, v2-acmlarge.zip, v2-acmtog.zip), and then copy the .bst file to the directory that contains your TeX file(s).

To get authoryear-style citations, you should also load the natbib package.

Addendum Feb. 2017: The ACM LaTeX style guide webpage appear to have migrated to https://www.acm.org/publications/acm-latex-style-guide-3jan2017.

Addendum Apr. 2021: The ACM LaTeX style guide webpage has migrated yet again. It is currently available at ACM Primary Article Templates AND Publication Workflow. Note that there are separate templates, depending on whether your computer uses MacOS or Windows. (I have no idea what users of Linux, etc, might want to do.) The ACM's template files are now also available in an Overleaf depository.

  • Thanks. I had used this style, however I need use acm.cls. and I get some errors :-(
    – Anderson
    Commented Aug 21, 2013 at 20:12
  • Thanks for providing this clarification. Are you also experiencing problems if you use one of the .cls class files provided in the three .zip files I mention in my answer?
    – Mico
    Commented Aug 22, 2013 at 4:54
  • Yes. I used acmlarge.cls.
    – Anderson
    Commented Aug 22, 2013 at 13:34
  • 1
    I would just like to format the citations and references, and not whole document.
    – Anderson
    Commented Aug 22, 2013 at 13:46
  • 1
    @imallett - Thanks for bringing this issue to my attention. I've edited my answer to provide a second addendum, to provide links to two locations. Hopefully, these locations will be valid for a while.
    – Mico
    Commented Apr 30, 2021 at 6:59

Try using apalike instead of acm.


This will give you citations of the form

[author, year]

  • Thanks. But, in APALike references are: [Ablamowicz, 2007] Ablamowicz R. 2007. CLIFFORD: a Maple ... [Abril and Plant, 2007] Abril P. S. and Plant R. 2007. The patent ... And ACM are: Rafal Ablamowicz and Bertfried Fauser. 2007. CLIFFORD: a Maple ... Patricia S. Abril and Robert Plant. 2007. The patent ...
    – Anderson
    Commented Aug 21, 2013 at 4:31

You can use \citestyle{authoryear} before \begin{document} in the current ACM Template.

It is written in the preamble:

%% The majority of ACM publications use numbered citations and
%% references.  The command \citestyle{authoryear} switches to the
%% "author year" style.
%% If you are preparing content for an event
%% sponsored by ACM SIGGRAPH, you must use the "author year" style of
%% citations and references.
%% Uncommenting
%% the next command will enable that style.
%% \citestyle{acmauthoryear}

It is easy to overlook. I asked the chairs about this.

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