Skip to Main Content


Journal Names Abbreviation

What are journal abbreviations?

Some disciplines require researchers to use abbreviated forms of journal titles in their publications. EndNote handles this problem by allowing you to import term lists that store both the full titles of journals and the corresponding abbreviations. Journal term lists provide the full title of a journal and up to 3 different abbreviations.

e.g. American Journal of Law and Medicine has the abbreviations Am. J. Law Med or Am J Law Med or American Journal of Law & Medicine.

EndNote provides lists for several disciplines including Bioscience, Economics, Humanities, Law, Medicine, and Philosophy.

Import term list

To Import a term list into EndNote:

  1. Select Library menu > Open Term Lists > Journals Term Lists
  2. On the Terms tab, select all the journal names by highlighting the first journal then pressing [Ctrl]+A on the keyboard (or [Command]+A on a Macintosh)
    Note: If the Journal Terms List is empty, skip to step 4
  3. Click on Delete Term to empty the list of old terms

  4. Click on the Lists tab
  5. Click on Import List

  6. You will then need to navigate to the Term Lists folder
    Term list folder for EndNote program is located at:
    • Windows - C:\Program Files(x86)\EndNote21\Term Lists
    • Mac - Macintosh HD > Applications > EndNote21 > Terms
  7. Select a Term List - e.g. Medical, click Open

The terms will be automatically added to your EndNote library.

Note: If a journal is not listed in the term list you should add it manually.

Add a term manually

If a journal is not listed in the term list you should add it manually. If you are not sure of the appropriate journal abbreviation, use the following tools to find out the correct abbreviation:

To manually add a term to the list:

  1. Select Library menu > Open Term Lists > Journals Term List
  2. From the Term Lists window select New Term

  3. Enter your term
  4. Click Save Journal if entering more than one term
  5. Click OK after entering your term or when all terms have been entered

Modify the referencing style to use journal abbreviations

Steps to modify the output Style so the abbreviated journal name is used:

  1. From the Tools menu select Output Styles then select Open Style Manager
  2. In the EndNote Style window, select the style you want to edit
  3. Click Edit and the style will open in a new window
  4. In the left pane select Journal names
  5. Under Journal Name Format select the field you want, usually this will be Abbreviation 1
  6. Save the output style with a new name.


You may need to close EndNote and reopen your Library to activate the term lists.

What if it doesn't work?
It may be because you now have 2 entries for a journal title.

  1. Go back to the term list
  2. click on Library > Open Term Lists > Journals Term Lists and scroll through the list to the journal title.

If the journal title appears twice delete the entry that has no abbreviations. If there is only one journal entry without any abbreviations you can add them manually

For medicine-related journal abbreviations go to Index Medicus - abbreviations of journals or for other subject areas you can try the Web of Science Journal Title Abbreviations

Endnote20 in action