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Chicago Manual of Style 17th Edition
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This section contains information on The Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS) method of document formatting and citation. These resources follow the seventeenth edition of The Chicago Manual of Style (17t h e dition), which was issued in 2017.
Please note that although these resources reflect the most recent updates in the The Chicago Manual of Style (17 th edition) concerning documentation practices, you can review a full list of updates concerning usage, technology, professional practice, etc. at The Chicago Manual of Style Online .
The Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS) covers a variety of topics from manuscript preparation and publication to grammar, usage, and documentation, and as such, it has been lovingly dubbed the “editor's bible.”
The material on this page focuses primarily on one of the two CMOS documentation styles: the Notes-Bibliography System (NB) , which is used by those working in literature, history, and the arts. The other documentation style, the Author-Date System, is nearly identical in content but slightly different in form and is preferred by those working in the social sciences.
Though the two systems both convey all of the important information about each source, they differ not only in terms of the way they direct readers to these sources, but also in terms of their formatting (e.g., the position of dates in citation entries). For examples of how these citation styles work in research papers, consult our sample papers:
Author-Date Sample Paper
NB Sample Paper
In addition to consulting The Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition) for more information, students may also find it useful to consult Kate L. Turabian's Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations (8th edition). This manual, which presents what is commonly known as the "Turabian" citation style, follows the two CMOS patterns of documentation but offers slight modifications suited to student texts.
Notes and Bibliography (NB) in Chicago style
The Chicago Notes and Bibliography (NB) system is often used in the humanities to provide writers with a system for referencing their sources through the use of footnotes, endnotes, and through the use of a bibliography. This offers writers a flexible option for citation and provides an outlet for commenting on those sources, if needed. Proper use of the Notes and Bibliography system builds a writer’s credibility by demonstrating their accountability to source material. In addition, it can protect writers from accusations of plagiarism, which is the intentional or accidental uncredited use of source material created by others.
Introduction to Notes
In the Notes and Bibliography system, you should include a note (endnote or footnote) each time you use a source, whether through a direct quote, paraphrase, or summary. Footnotes are added at the end of the page on which the source is referenced, while endnotes are compiled at the end of each chapter or at the end of the entire document.
In either case, a superscript number corresponding to a note, along with the bibliographic information for that source, should be placed in the text following the end of the sentence or clause in which the source is referenced.
If a work includes a bibliography, which is typically preferred, then it is not necessary to provide full publication details in notes. However, if a bibliography is not included with a work, the first note for each source should include all relevant information about the source: author’s full name, source title, and facts of publication. If you cite the same source again, or if a bibliography is included in the work, the note only needs to include the surname of the author, a shortened form of the title (if more than four words), and the page number(s). However, in a work that does not include a bibliography, it is recommended that the full citation be repeated when it is first used in a new chapter.
In contrast to earlier editions of CMOS, if you cite the same source two or more times consecutively, CMOS recommends using shortened citations. In a work with a bibliography, the first reference should use a shortened citation which includes the author’s name, the source title, and the page number(s), and consecutive references to the same work may omit the source title and simply include the author and page number. Although discouraged by CMOS, if you cite the same source and page number(s) from a single source two or more times consecutively, it is also possible to utilize the word “Ibid.,” ( from the Latin ibidem, which means “in the same place,”) as the corresponding note. If you use the same source but a draw from different new page, the corresponding note should use “Ibid.” followed by a comma and the new page number(s).
In the NB system, the footnote or endnote itself begins with the appropriate full-sized number, followed by a period and then a space.
Introduction to Bibliographies
In the NB system, the bibliography provides an alphabetical list of all sources used in a given work. This page, most often titled Bibliography, is usually placed at the end of the work preceding the index. It should include all sources cited within the work and may sometimes include other relevant sources that were not cited but provide further reading.
Although bibliographic entries for various sources may be formatted differently, all included sources (books, articles, websites, etc.) are arranged alphabetically by author’s last name. If no author or editor is listed, the title or, as a last resort, a descriptive phrase may be used.
Though useful, a bibliography is not required in works that provide full bibliographic information in the notes.
All entries in the bibliography will include the author (or editor, compiler, translator), title, and publication information.
The author’s name is inverted in the bibliography, placing the last name first and separating the last name and first name with a comma; for example, John Smith becomes Smith, John.
Titles of books and journals are italicized. Titles of articles, chapters, poems, etc. are placed in quotation marks .
The year of publication is listed after the publisher or journal name .
In a bibliography, all major elements are separated by periods.
For more information and specific examples, see the sections on Books and Periodicals .
Please note that this OWL resource provides basic information regarding the formatting of entries used in the bibliography. For more information about Selected Bibliographies, Annotated Bibliographies, and Bibliographic Essays, please consult Chapter 14.61 of The Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition).
Go to Index
Chicago-Style Citation Quick Guide
Chicago-style source citations come in two varieties: (1) notes and bibliography and (2) author-date. If you already know which system to use, follow one of the links above to see sample citations for a variety of common sources. If you are unsure about which system to use, read on.
Notes and Bibliography or Author-Date?
The notes and bibliography system is preferred by many working in the humanities—including literature, history, and the arts. In this system, sources are cited in numbered footnotes or endnotes. Each note corresponds to a raised (superscript) number in the text. Sources are also usually listed in a separate bibliography. The notes and bibliography system can accommodate a wide variety of sources, including unusual ones that don’t fit neatly into the author-date system.
The author-date system is more common in the sciences and social sciences. In this system, sources are briefly cited in the text, usually in parentheses, by author’s last name and year of publication. Each in-text citation matches up with an entry in a reference list, where full bibliographic information is provided.
Aside from the use of numbered notes versus parenthetical references in the text, the two systems share a similar style. Follow the links at the top of this page to see examples of some of the more common source types cited in both systems.
Most authors choose the system used by others in their field or required by their publisher. Students who are unsure of which system to use will find more information here .
For a more comprehensive look at Chicago’s two systems of source citation and many more examples, see chapters 14 and 15 of The Chicago Manual of Style.
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What is the Chicago Referencing Style?
Chicago style referencing is used by students, writers and researchers worldwide to acknowledge the use of other people’s words and ideas in their written work, thereby lending credibility to their statements and conclusions without committing plagiarism.
The Chicago Manual of Style (Sixteenth Edition) outlines two basic documentation systems:
- Notes-Bibliography System (NB) is made up of footnotes or endnotes (or both), and a bibliography
- Author-Date System consists of parenthetical author-date references and a corresponding reference list including full publication information
The style offers academic writers the choice between these two formats; choosing which system you are going to apply to your work will depend on your discipline and the type of sources you are referencing. If you are unsure which system you should be using, make sure you consult your tutor before you begin.
The notes and bibliography system is primarily used in the humanities – including literature, history, and the arts – because it is a flexible style that accommodates unusual source types and opens up space for commentary on the sources cited. A superscript number at the end of the sentence signals to the reader that a source has been used, and summary details of the source can be found using the numbered footnote at the bottom of the page. Full details of the source information can be located in the bibliography, which is presented at the end of the essay in alphabetical order by author. Read more about creating footnotes here.
Chicago style referencing also has an author-date variant, which is commonly used by those in the physical, natural, and social sciences. Sources are briefly cited in the text and enclosed within parentheses. Each parenthetical reference includes the author’s last name and date of publication, and is keyed to a corresponding reference in a complete list of references, where full bibliographic information is provided.
Whether you are using the notes and bibliography system or the author-date style in your work, Cite This For Me’s referencing tool will generate your citations in seconds. Simply log in to your account, or create one for free, and select ‘Chicago Manual of Style 16th edition (full-note bibliography)’ or ‘Chicago Manual of Style 16th edition (author-date)’.
Popular Chicago Citation Examples
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Cite This For Me’s Chicago Citation Generator
Our mission at Cite This For Me is to educate students in the benefits of utilising multiple sources in their written work and the importance of accurately referencing all source material. This guide has been written to support students, writers and researchers by offering clear, well-considered advice on the usage of Chicago style referencing.
We understand that it is easy to inadvertently plagiarise your work under the mounting pressure of expectation and deadlines. That’s why we’ve created this open-access generator to automate the referencing process, allowing you to save valuable time transcribing and organising your references. So, rather than starting from scratch when your essay, article, or research is due, save yourself the legwork with the world’s most accurate reference generator . It’s the quickest and easiest way to reference any source.
There are thousands of other referencing styles out there – the use of which one varies according to scholarly discipline, university requirements, your professor’s preference or the publication you are writing for. Sign up to Cite This For Me to select from over 1,000+ styles, including university variations of each.
So, if you are looking to reference your work using Harvard referencing , or your discipline prefers that you use APA referencing , we’ve got you covered. Check out the wide range of styles available on Cite This For Me’s website, as well as the Chicago citation generator above you’ll find open-generators for styles such as MLA , OSCOLA and Vancouver . Search for your university-specific style by logging into your Cite This For Me account and setting your institution in ‘My Profile’. Once you know which style you are using, it is essential that you stick to their style guidelines when referencing your work.
Keep reading our comprehensive guide for practical advice and examples that will help you create your references with ease. If you need further information or examples, consult the official style manual (16th edition).
How do I Create and Format My Citations?
Whilst Cite This For Me’s Chicago style citation generator ensures ultimate accuracy whether you are writing a university assignment or preparing a research project, you are encouraged to review your references manually for consistency, accuracy and completeness according to this guide.
I. Notes-Bibliography System
- Formatting a footnote
If you are adopting the Chicago style referencing NB system, you should insert a footnote to acknowledge your source material, rather than a parenthetical reference. Whenever you reference a source, whether it is using a direct quote, paraphrasing another author’s words, or simply referring to an idea or theory, you should:
- Insert a superscript number (raised slightly above the line) at the end of the sentence containing the source – begin with number 1 and continue numerically throughout the paper
- The superscript number should follow any punctuation mark (full stops, parentheses and commas etc.). Do not put any punctuation after the number
- Each number must correspond to a matching number at the foot of the page – whilst note numbers in-text are set as superscript numbers, the notes themselves are full size
- Footnote generally lists the author (first name first), title, and facts of publication (enclosed in parentheses), in that order – each should be separated by commas. Titles are capitalised, titles of books and journals are italicised, titles of smaller works (e.g. chapters or articles) are presented in roman and enclosed in double quotation marks
- Footnotes should always end with a period in Chicago style referencing (except when an URL or DOI has been added)
- Notes should be separated from the main body of text with a typed line 1 ½ inches long
- Notes are single-spaced, and the first line of each footnote is indented two spaces from the page margin. Double-space between each note
- Abbreviations include editor/edited by/ edition (ed/eds.), translator/translated by (trans.), volume (vol.), chapter (chap.), no date (n.d), part (pt.), and others (et al.) and revised/revised by/revision/review (rev.)
Read more about formatting your footnotes on Monash University ’s website.
- Formatting a shortened note
Whilst the first reference for each source should include all relevant bibliographic information, if you reference the same source again Chicago style referencing guidelines permit you to use a shortened form of the note.
- The short form need only include enough information to remind your reader of the full title, or to direct them to the appropriate entry in the bibliography
- Include the surname of the author, a shortened form of the title of the work cited (if more than four words), and page number(s) in the reference
- If a work has two or three authors, reference in full the first time and subsequently give the last name of each; for more than three, the surname of the first author followed by et al.
- If you reference the same source (and same page number(s)) from a single source two or more times consecutively, the footnote should use the word “ Ibid., ”. If you use the same source but different page number, use “ Ibid., (page number)” – e.g. Farmwinkle, Humor of the Midwest , 241 can be cited as ‘ Ibid., 258-59.’
- Are you using Chicago style referencing to cite one source multiple times in the same paragraph? You can reference it either parenthetically in-text or in subsequent notes by means of an abbreviation – e.g. Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway (Ware: Wordsworth Editions, 1996), 52 (hereafter cited in text as Dalloway )
Formatting an endnote
If you are drawing on multiple sources, a page cluttered with footnotes can overwhelm your reader. Whilst readers of scholarly works generally prefer footnotes for ease of reference, endnotes are less intrusive and will not interrupt the flow of your work. You should judge for yourself whether footnotes or endnotes would best compliment your assignment, and then Cite This For Me’s Chicago citation generator will create them for you.
- Whilst footnotes are added at the end of the page on which the source is cited, endnotes will be compiled at the end of each chapter or at the end of the entire work (this usually depends on the length of your work)
- Notes should be numbered consecutively (beginning with number 1) throughout each chapter or article
- You must include all of the bibliographic information within each entry
- At the end of the chapter or assignment, list the full references under the heading ‘Notes’
II. Author-Date System
If you are using the author-date system in Chicago style referencing, you must indicate each source with a brief parenthetical reference:
- Include the last name of author and the year of publication in parentheses, with each element separated by a comma. Include a page number if you are quoting a particular section of a source
- Position the in-text reference ( click here to read more about formatting in-text references) at the end of the sentence referring to the source, and place just inside a mark of punctuation – unless it is a block quotation , in which case it is placed outside the punctuation
- Where the author’s name appears in the text, you don’t need to repeat it in the reference
- When you are using Chicago style referencing to cite works with more than three authors, only the name of the first author is used, followed by et al. – e.g. (Schonen et al. 2009)
- Compile a list of all source material in a reference list at the end of your assignment
Recent revisions to the format have allowed for a certain degree of flexibility. For instance, you may prefer to use a combination of footnotes and parenthetical author-date references (especially if you have an excess of notes) – you could use author-date references to indicate sources within the text, and numbered footnotes or endnotes to add comments.
Why not give the Cite This For Me app or Chicago style citation generator a try? Save yourself the bother of formatting your references and have the whole thing done in moments using our state-of-the-art automated technology. Simply search for the author or title of the book you want to reference and leave the rest to us.
Creating My Bibliography and Reference List
Each reference in the body of your written work should be directly keyed to a bibliography or reference list entry. Compiling a full list of all the source material that has contributed to your research and writing process is the perfect opportunity to show your reader the effort you have gone to in researching your chosen topic, ensuring that you get the result you deserve. Remember that Cite This For Me’s Chicago citation generator will help you assemble your bibliography…
Have you been wondering how to organise all of your fully-formatted references in a comprehensive list? Well look no further, because here’s the lowdown on how to structure your bibliography:
- Arrange sources alphabetically by author’s last name (if no author or editor is listed then by the title or keyword that readers are most likely to seek)
- Usually titled ‘Bibliography’, and placed at the end of your work but preceding the index
- A full bibliography will include all relevant sources that provided further reading, even if they were not directly referenced in your work – check with your tutor whether or not this is necessary
- Each bibliographic entry should include: author name (last name first, separating last and first name with a comma), title of work (italicised, titles of articles and chapters etc. enclosed in quotation marks instead), publication information (publisher name, location, year of publication – not enclosed in parentheses)
- All the main elements in the reference are separated by periods rather than commas
- Terms such as editor, edition, translator, volume can be abbreviated within in-text Chicago style referencing, but edited by, translated by must be spelled out in the bibliography
- Do not include specific page numbers, but for easier location of chapters or journal articles, include the beginning and ending page numbers of the whole chapter or article
- Go here to find more information on accurately compiling a bibliography
If you are adopting the author-date variant of the style, read the above list for a guide on how to compile your reference list. There are just two differences from the notes-bibliography system:
- Instead of a bibliography your list should be titled ‘References’ or ‘Works Cited’
- The year of publication comes directly after the author’s name – this facilitates the easy lookup of reference list entries because it copies the format of the in-text reference
Are you spending too much time on completing your bibliography? Cite This For Me’s Chicago citation generator is here to take a weight off your mind.
Chicago Style Referencing Examples (16th Edition)
Carefully follow these examples when compiling and formatting both your in-text references and bibliography in order to avoid losing marks for referencing incorrectly.
Each example in this section includes a numbered footnote, a shortened form of the note, and a corresponding bibliography entry for you to follow when using Chicago style referencing.
Book with single author or editor:
- Full reference in a footnote:
5. Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals (New York: Penguin, 2006), 99-100.
- Shortened reference in a footnote:
5. Pollan, Omnivore’s Dilemma, 3.
- Bibliography entry:
Pollan, Michael, The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. New York: Penguin, 2006.
Book with multiple authors:
Are you using Chicago style referencing to cite a book with two or more authors?Note that only the first-listed name is inverted in the bibliography entry.
3. Geoffrey C. Ward and Ken Burns, The War: An Intimate History, 1941–1945 (New York: Knopf, 2007), 52.
3. Ward and Burns, War, 52.
Ward, Geoffrey C., and Ken Burns. The War: An Intimate History, 1941–1945. New York: Knopf, 2007.
Print journal article:
89. Walter Blair, “Americanized Comic Braggarts,” Critical Inquiry 4, no. 2 (1977): 331-32.
89. Blair, “Americanized Comic Braggarts,” 335.
Blair, Walter. “Americanized Comic Braggarts.” Critical Inquiry 4, no. 2 (1977): 331-49.
Online journal article:
When referencing electronic sources researched online, the Chicago style referencing manual recommends including an electronic resource identifier, where possible, to lead your reader directly to the source.
A URL is a uniform resource locator, which directs the reader straight to the online source. When using a URL, copy the address from your browser’s address bar when viewing the article. You must include the source’s full publication information as well. Or simply paste the URL into Cite This For Me’s Chicago citation generator to auto-generate your reference.
12. Wilfried Karmaus and John F. Riebow, “Storage of Serum in Plastic and Glass Containers May Alter the Serum Concentration of Polychlorinated Biphenyls,” Environmental Health Perspectives 112 (May 2004): 645, http://www.jstor.org/stable/3435987.
12. Karmaus and Riebow, “Storage of Serum,” 645.
Karmaus, Wilfried, and John F. Riebow. “Storage of Serum in Plastic and Glass Containers May Alter the Serum Concentration of Polychlorinated Biphenyls.” Environmental Health Perspectives 112 (May 2004): 643-647. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3435987.
A DOI is a digital object identifier; a unique and permanent name assigned to a piece of intellectual property, such as a journal article, in any medium in which it is published. If it is available, Chicago style referencing guidlines prefer that you include the DOI rather than the ISBN.
3. William J. Novak, “The Myth of the ‘Weak’ American State,” American Historical Review 113 (June 2008): 758, doi:10.1086/ahr.113.3.752.
3. Novak, “Myth,” 770.
Novak, William J. “The Myth of the ‘Weak’ American State,” American Historical Review 113 (June 2008): 752-72. doi:10.1086/ahr.113.3.752.
II. Author-Date System:
Each example in this section includes an in-text reference and a corresponding reference list entry for you to follow when using Chicago style referencing.
Article with single author or editor, author mentioned in text:
- In-text reference:
Here we empirically demonstrate that workers’ and regulatory agents’ understandings of discrimination and legality emerge not only in the shadow of the law but also, as Albiston (2005) suggests…
- Reference list entry:
Albiston, Catherine R. 2005. “Bargaining in the Shadow of Social Institutions: Competing Discourses and Social Change in the Workplace Mobilization of Civil Rights.” Law and Society Review 39 (1): 11-47.
Article with multiple authors, author not mentioned in text:
As legal observers point out, much dispute resolution transpires outside the courtroom but in the “shadow of the law” (Mnookin and Kornhauser 1979)…
Mnookin, Robert, and Lewis Kornhauser. 1979. “Bargaining in the Shadow of the Law: The Case of Divorce.” Yale Law Journal 88 (5): 950-97.
*For a work with four or more authors, include all the authors in the reference list entry. However, in the in-text reference you need only cite the last name of the first-listed author, followed by et al. (e.g. Barnes et al. 2008, 118-19)
For more examples, see chapters 14 and 15 of the official style manual (sixteenth edition), or find more information available here .
A Brief History of the Style
Chicago style referencing dates back to 1891 when the University of Chicago Press opened. The Press housed typesetters and compositors who were working on setting and deciphering complicated scientific material in fonts such as Hebrew and Ethiopic. A style sheet was devised with the aim of maintaining consistency throughout the typesetting process; from the typesetter, to the compositor, to the proofreader.
Over the years the ‘University Press stylebook and style sheet’ developed into a pamphlet used by the entire university community, before becoming a 200-page book in 1906: Manual of Style: Being a compilation of the typographical rules in force at the University of Chicago Press, to which are appended specimens of type in use – also known as the first edition of the Manual. Today’s thousand-page 16th edition provides authors, editors, publishers, copywriters and proofreaders across the globe with the authoritative text on the style.
The Chicago style is continually evolving, with each edition undergoing revisions that reflect technological developments. For instance, the publication of the 13th edition in 1982 addressed the use of personal computers and word processors for the first time. When the World Wide Web became a global phenomenon in the 1990s, the very nature of research and communication shifted dramatically. The style’s editorial staff tackled this development by releasing a comprehensive 15th edition (2003) that incorporated the role of computer technology in the publishing industry by providing guidance on referencing electronic sources.
The 16th – and latest – edition of the Chicago style referencing manual (2010) was the first edition to be published both in hardcover and online. The manual reflects the changes undergone by the publishing industry in response to the digital age, and the subsequent evolution in the way in which authors and publishers work. It addresses a diverse range of source types that define academic publishing today; from URLs and DOIs to ebooks, Instagram and foreign languages, and provides comprehensive examples that illustrate how to reference online and digital sources.
The 16th edition also revamped the referencing style in order to move towards a more uniform style that closes the gap between the Notes-Bibliography and Author-Date systems. By recommending a single approach to each stylistic matter, rather than a myriad of puzzling options and exceptions to the rule, the style offers efficient and logical solutions to the sometimes-complex referencing process. Still confused? Use our powerful Chicago citation generator to create your references with ease.
Why is Referencing Important?
Plagiarism occurs when a writer does not properly credit their source material; stealing the ideas or words of another and passing them off as one’s own is literary theft. Failure to acknowledge the sources upon which you’ve built your work is a breach of academic integrity, and this can result in a failed module, expulsion from university or even legal action from the original author. The proper use of a referencing system protects writers from committing plagiarism and being accused of plagiarising their work.
Both courtesy and copyright laws require you to identify the following in your work:
- Where you directly quote another author’s words
- Where you paraphrase or summarise another author’s words or ideas
- Where you include information, facts or ideas that are not generally known or easily checked
As a general rule, you must highlight any borrowed source material that might appear to be your own if it is not referenced correctly. When in doubt, remember that it is much better to over-cite your work than under-cite.
The importance of attributing your research goes beyond avoiding plagiarism, and whilst it may seem like a tedious process, attributing and documenting your sources is an essential practice for all academic writers. Accurate Chicago style referencing will validate your work by demonstrating that you have thoroughly researched your chosen subject and found a variety of scholarly opinions and ideas to support, or challenge, your thesis. As an academic writer, your written work is a chance to engage in conversation with the scholars that you are referencing by placing your own ideas in the context of the larger intellectual conversation about your topic. In correctly using references, you also lead your reader directly to the sources you have consulted, thereby enabling them to form their own views on your opinions and appreciate your contribution to the topic.
Here at Cite This For Me we know that referencing can be an arduous and time-consuming process. Luckily for you, you can work more efficiently – and avoid being marked down for plagiarism – by using Cite This For Me’s Chicago style citation generator.
How do I Accurately Reference My Sources with Cite This For Me?
Are you battling to get your bibliography finished on time? Feeling the pressure of imminent deadlines? Remove all the pain of referencing with Cite This For Me’s intuitive and accurate referencing generator.
Cite This For Me is committed to educating academic writers across the globe in the art of accurate referencing. We believe it is essential that you equip yourself with the knowledge of why you need to use a referencing system, how best to insert references in the main body of your assignment, and how to accurately compile a bibliography. At first, referencing may seem like a waste of time when you would much rather be focusing on the actual content of your work, but after reading this extensive Chicago style referencing guide we hope that you will see referencing as a valuable, lifelong skill that is worth honing.
Our multi-platform tool is designed to fulfill all of your referencing needs – whether you’re working at home, in the library, or on-the-go… With features such as Photo Quotes, which translates printed text into digital text for you to save as a quote, and organisational functions. Cite This For Me will transform the way that you carry out your research.
Sign up for free now and use our Chicago style citation generator to add and edit references on the spot, import and export full projects or individual entries, make use of our add-ons and save your work in the cloud. Or step it up a notch with our browser extension Cite This For Me for Chrome – work smarter by referencing web pages, articles, books and videos directly from your browser whilst you research online.
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Home / Guides / Citation Guides / Chicago Style
Chicago/Turabian Style Guide
Need Chicago or Turabian style for a paper you are writing? This guide has everything you need to know about Chicago style according to the latest standards.
This page follows the 17th edition of The Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS) and the 9th edition of the Turabian guide ( A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations ), though this guide is not officially connected with either.
Here’s a run-through of everything this page includes:
Here’s what you’ll find on this page:
What is chicago style what is turabian, paper formatting guidelines, citing your sources, notes and bibliography style, author-date style, formatting your bibliography or reference list, other chicago guides.
- Introduction to the Chicago and Turabian styles
- Paper formatting guidelines
- When and what you need to cite when writing a paper
- Notes and bibliography style
- Author-date style
- Bibliography and reference list formatting tips
You may have heard the terms “Chicago” and “Turabian” used interchangeably and wondered what the difference is. Simply put, they are just about the same.
Turabian is a simpler version of Chicago style meant for students who are writing materials that will not be published. Since the CMOS is meant for material that is intended for publication, it’s often used by scholars, publishers, and other professional academics. The Turabian guide is shorter and includes information on formatting rules, the basics of researching and writing academic papers, and citation style. Despite these differences, these two books work in tandem; both are considered to be official Chicago style.
Since Chicago style is typically used for manuscripts that will be published, The Chicago Manual of Style does not offer many guidelines for paper formatting. This is because publishers each have their own house styles and authors must follow these exactly. There are a few areas where guidance is offered.
- Manuscripts : Generally, manuscripts should be double-spaced (CMOS 2.8). Exceptions are block quotations, table titles, and lists in appendixes, which should be single-spaced, and certain front matter (e.g., table of contents), footnotes or endnotes, and bibliographies and reference lists, which should be single-spaced internally but have a blank line between each separate item (Turabian A.1.3).
- Spaces at the end of sentences and after colons : Chicago recommends one space (CMOS 2.9; Turabian A.1.3).
- Margins : Margins should be at least one inch on all four sides (CMOS 2.10). Certain forms of writing like dissertations or theses may require a larger margin on the left side to allow room for binding, but each institution will have different requirements (Turabian A.1.1).
- Justification : Text should be justified to the left (CMOS 2.10).
- Font : Turabian recommends using a font that is both readable and readily available to most people such as Times New Roman or Arial. Times New Roman font size should be no smaller than 12-point and Arial no smaller than 10-point. Footnotes and endnotes may require different sizing and you should refer to your instructor’s guidelines (Turabian A.1.2).
- Pagination : Pagination of the body of the paper and back matter should use arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, etc.). Front matter like the title page and table of contents should use lowercase roman numerals (i, ii, iii, etc.). For the placement of page numbers, the general rule is to adhere to local guidelines and be consistent. (Turabian A.1.4)
For more specific formatting guidelines, you can take a look at the appendix “Paper Format and Submission” in the Turabian manual.
Chicago style has two citation styles to let readers know that you used information from somewhere else and to show them where to find it.
- notes and bibliography style
- author-date style.
Though different, each style allows you to tell your readers how you found your information. If you’re wondering how these two styles differ from parenthetical citations, this guide on footnotes, end notes, and parentheticals contains more details on each method.
The 2 styles
The first style is the notes and bibliography style . This style uses footnotes or endnotes to point readers to the original source of the information. This style also often provides a bibliography at the end that readers consult, but this is not always necessary if sources are cited in full in your text.
The second style is called author-date style . This style uses parenthetical in-text citation to let readers know to look at the reference list at the end to find the full citation for the information you have used.
Here’s a chart to compare these two citation styles:
You must cite your source in any of the following situations:
- If you quote a source exactly
- If you reword ideas from a source
- If you use any material (e.g., statistics, data, methodology) from a source you read while writing
When citing your sources, you usually need a few key pieces of information:
- Who created the source? This might be an author, editor, translator, or corporate body.
- How can you identify the source? This information will likely include a title, page numbers, volume or issue numbers, and edition.
- What is the publication information? This might include the name of the publishing company, the year of publication, and the name of the journal or book the information is in.
- Where can others find the source? This is important for online sources and singular material like that found in rare book collections or archives. For online material, you’ll want to record a URL or database name if possible. For rare book or archival material, you’ll need the name of the place you found it and the collection name.
Why citing your sources is important Telling your readers where you found your information is a very important part of the writing process. It gives credit to the hard work others have done . It also lets readers know that your information is reliable—they don’t just have to take it from you; they can go see what other researchers have written about the topic.
Citing your sources also helps readers to understand the context of your project . You can show that you understand the work that has already been done and where your own research fits in.
Finally, your readers might want to build on your research. Citing helps them to know where you found your information when readers do their own research. They might even cite you if you formally published your work. You can read more about how to integrate the research of others into your paper in Chapter 7 of the Turabian manual or Chapter 13 in the CMOS.
This style uses superscript numbers at the ends of sentences. These numbers alert readers that the sentence contains information from another source. Each superscript number refers to a note.
The notes are located at the bottom of the page (footnotes) or at the end of the paper, chapter, or book (endnotes).
- Footnotes make it very easy for readers to find your source, but they can interrupt the document flow.
- Endnotes tend to reduce distraction on the page, but then the reader must flip pages to find the source you cite.
Unless your instructor has told you otherwise, the choice between footnotes and endnotes is up to you. You just need to be consistent and stick to one style or the other.
Updates to “Ibid” It’s important to note that previous editions of the CMOS encouraged the use of “ibid” when the same source was cited multiple times in a row. “Ibid” is a Latin word meaning “in the same place.”
The 17th edition of the CMOS, however, overturns this recommendation because the use of “ibid” can be confusing for readers and authors can easily cite to the wrong source if they are not careful.
The current recommendation of the CMOS is to always use the shortened form of the citation. If you refer to the same work multiple times in a row, you may leave out the shortened title and just list the author’s last name and the page number to which you are citing (See CMOS 14.34 for more information.).
Full Bibliography If you are including a full bibliography, you might choose only to use shortened citation forms in your footnotes or endnotes. You may also use the shortened structure that omits the title for sources that you cite several times in a row.
Keep in mind that if you cite a different source, you need to use the full shortened structure the next time you cite from a source you have used before. Here’s an example:
- Robisheaux, Langenburg , 58
- Robisheaux, 59.
- Robisheaux, 70.
- Cyrus, Scribes , 80.
- Robisheaux, Langenburg , 95.
Citation Examples Here are a few examples of citation structures in the notes and bibliography style. For more examples and information on this style, check out the EasyBib Chicago footnotes guide.
Newspaper or magazine article:
This style uses parenthetical in-text citations and a reference list to guide readers to the sources you cite. The in-text citation generally includes the:
- Author’s last name
- Year of publication
- Page numbers referenced
Using the parenthetical citation, the reader can then look at the reference list and find full information for the source.The reference list for this style is usually titled “References” or “Works Cited” and is organized in alphabetical order by the author’s last name. The parenthetical in-text citation always comes at the end of a sentence, and is placed before the final punctuation.
In-text citation example Nicholson’s study reveals a great deal about the general practices of ARL institutions in regard to the technical processing of these personal libraries. About half of the institutions kept the personal libraries shelved together and half used a Library of Congress classification scheme (Nicholson 2010, 114-115).
In the reference list, the citation would appear as follows:
Nicholson, Joseph R. 2010. “Making Personal Libraries More Public: A Study of the Technical Processing of Personal Libraries in ARL Institutions.” RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage 11, no. 2 (Fall): 106-133.
Additional Examples Here are more examples of parenthetical in-text citations and their full citations as they would appear in the reference list. There are even more guides linked at the bottom of this page.
In-text citation examples
When building in-text citations, you might come across more complicated citations. This chart shows some of the most common citation types you will come across and how to build in-text citations for them.
Bibliographies and reference lists are located at the end of your paper. You should include every source you cite in your bibliography or reference list.
Here are a few guidelines to follow:
- Center your title (either “Bibliography” or “Reference List”) at the top of the page.
- Organize entries alphabetically by the last name of the author (or title if no author is known).
- Each entry should be single-spaced with a blank line between entries.
- Each entry should also have a half-inch hanging indent.
While sometimes 3-em dashes are used in bibliographies and reference lists in repeated list entries under the same author, the 17th edition of CMOS actually recommends that authors not do this in citation lists (CMOS 14.67 and 15.17).
Using 3-em dashes can cause a number of problems and it is best to just use the author’s name each time, especially if submitting your work for formal publication.
If your editor or publisher wants to use the 3-em dash, they will insert them where necessary. You can also check with your teacher and see what they want you to do.
For more guidelines for formatting bibliographies and reference lists, see CMOS 14 and 15 and Chapters 16 and 18 in the Turabian guide.
- Fundamentals of Chicago Citation
- How to Cite a Book
- How to Cite a Chapter
- How to Cite an E-book
- How to Cite the Bible
- How to Cite a Journal
- How to Cite a Newspaper
- How to Cite a Magazine
- How to Cite a Blog
- How to Cite a Website
- How to Cite a Tweet
- How to Cite a Video on YouTube
Audio / Video / Photo / Art
- How to Cite a Film
- How to Cite a Musical Recording
- How to Cite a Painting
- How to Cite a Podcast
- How to Cite a Photo
- How to Cite Sheet Music
- How to Cite a TV/Radio Broadcast
- How to Cite a Thesis or Dissertation
- How to Cite a Conference Paper
- How to Cite a Lecture
Other Source Types
- How to Cite a Report
- How to Cite Interview
- How to Cite a Mobile App
- How to Cite an Encyclopedia
- How to Cite a Dictionary
The Chicago Manual of Style , 17th ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2017. https://doi.org/10.7208/cmos17.
Turabian, Kate L. A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations , 9th ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2018.
Published October 31, 2011. Updated April 9, 2020.
Written by Janice Hansen . Janice has a doctorate in literature and a master’s degree in library science. She spends a lot of time with rare books and citations.
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Chicago Citation Examples
Other Citation Styles
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Chicago Style Citations – How We Can Help
The Chicago style of citing the sources you used for your research is by far the most complicated of the three citing styles.
Usually seen in universities, the Chicago style can sometimes also be seen being introduced in colleges.
There are a lot of rules and regulations to follow when using the Chicago citation system and if they aren’t followed to the letter, you may find yourself loosing valuable marks or even failing altogether.
Why Cite Sources?
Correctly citing your work is important for several reasons.
As stated above, if you don’t cite your work properly and in the requested style, following all of the rules, then you may find you fail your assignment. This can lead to a lower grade average and effect your overall grade.
Correctly citing your work shows your professors that you have out the time and effort into researching your theories and aren’t just spouting nonsense. It shows that you are committed to producing the best work you can.
It also eliminates the possibility of accidental plagiarism. Of course you’ve written your paper in your own words, but if you use a quote from someone for example, and don’t correctly credit the original writer, that will flag up as plagiarism.
When you have been instructed to cite your sources, the fact that plagiarism is unintentional is almost irrelevant – it still shows that you haven’t completed the assignment as instructed.
Why Use the Chicago Citation Generator?
Cite It In’s Chicago style reference generator gives you everything you need for citation, ensuring it meets the standards set out in the Chicago manual of style. Citation generator means you don’t have to spend hours reading and deciphering the manual.
In fact, using citeitin.com Chicago manual style citation generator is a better option that the manual, as out software constantly updates to stay ahead of any changes made to the citation style.
How The Chicago Style Citation Generator Can Work for You
CiteItIn uses a really simple process for our Chicago reference generator.
Select the format of your source, for example, it could be an eBook, a journal, a newspaper or a video to name a few.
Add the particular source you have chosen. You can add such as the title, the author name, the version etc. and allow us to search it out for you. Alternatively, if it is an inline source, simply enter the link and out system will auto fill the details for you.
Carry on adding sources to generate your bibliography. Make sure you have at least the minimum number of sources that your professor required. And make sure to add every source you used. Give the credit where it’s due!
Choose which system you are using – choose from citation generator Chicago, citation generator MLA or citation generator APA.
Your bibliography is now ready to download and use. Easy right? Much easier than learning the entire rules and workings of the Chicago citation system that’s for sure!
And to make Cite It In even more appealing, the great news is that all of our citation systems generators are completely free. So whether you need help with Chicago style citation or MLA or APA citations, you have come to the right place.
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Chicago Author-Date Style | A Complete Guide to Citing Sources
Published on March 21, 2022 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on December 5, 2022.
The Chicago Manual of Style provides guidelines for two styles of source citation: notes and bibliography and author-date. Author-date style is the preferred option in the sciences and social sciences.
In author-date style, an in-text citation consists of the author’s name, the publication year, and (if relevant) a page number. Each citation must correspond to an entry in the reference list at the end of your paper, where you give full details of the source.
Chicago Reference Generator
Table of contents
Using author-date in-text citations, creating a reference list, format of reference list entries, variations on the format of chicago author-date citations, frequently asked questions about chicago author-date style.
In Chicago author-date style, you cite sources in parentheses in the text. The citation includes the author’s last name followed by the year of publication, with no punctuation in between:
If you refer to a specific part of the text (particularly when quoting or paraphrasing ), you should also add a page number or page range to direct the reader to the relevant passage. The page number appears after a comma and the first and last page are separated by an en dash .
(Smith 2012, 21–22)
Placement of in-text citations
A citation usually appears at the end of the relevant clause, sentence or quotation, before any concluding punctuation. If multiple citations are needed at the same point, they should appear in the same set of parentheses separated by a semicolon :
Previous researchers have argued that the evidence is insufficient to confirm a correlation (Smith 2012; Johnson 2015) , but new evidence suggests this consensus may be mistaken (McDonald 2018).
If the researcher’s name is already mentioned in the text, the citation should appear straight after it and include only the date. If quoting, add a page number directly after the quote:
Smith (2012) argues that there is reason to believe this method has “great potential” (31) . However, Johnson’s (2015) experiment fails to bear out this assertion.
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The reference list appears at the end of your paper, and provides more detailed information about the sources you cited.
Each entry in the reference list also begins with the author’s last name and the publication date, so that your reader can easily find any source they encounter in the text:
Smith, James. 2012. Example Book . New York: Norton.
Your reference list is usually titled “References” or “Works Cited.” It is alphabetized by author last name. It is single-spaced, unlike the main text , but a blank line is left between entries.
Entries which extend onto more than one line have a “ hanging indent ,” which means the second and any subsequent lines are indented:
Garcia Márquez, Gabriel. 1988. Love in the Time of Cholera . Translated by Edith Grossman. London: Cape.
Below is an example of what a typical reference list looks like:
The format of the entry varies somewhat according to what type of source you’re citing. Examples for various source types are given below.
Book citations include the title in italics, the place of publication and the publisher. If the book gives an edition on the title page, include this. Add the names of any editors and translators, and add a URL, DOI or e-book format if you consulted a digital version.
Book chapter citation
To cite a chapter from an edited collection, include the chapter title in quotation marks , the page range where the chapter appears, and the editor(s) of the book.
Journal article citation
Journal article entries include the volume and issue number, as well as a more specific publication date and a page range showing where the article appears in the journal. If accessed online, add a digital object identifier (DOI) or a URL.
For web pages and online articles, put the page or article title in quotation marks, followed by the name of the website. If there is no publication date, replace the year with “n.d.” and give the date on which you accessed the page.
The format of in-text citations and reference list entries can vary to accommodate circumstances like multiple authors, multiple publications by the same author in one year, and missing information.
Citing a source with multiple authors
When there are multiple authors, list their names in the same order as they appear in the source.
When a source has two or three authors, include the names of all the authors in your in-text citation. For sources with four or more authors, use the name of the first author followed by “ et al. ”
In the reference list, up to ten authors are listed. Alphabetize based on the first author’s last name. The other names are not inverted:
Gmuca, Natalia V., Linnea E. Pearson, Jennifer M. Burns, and Heather E. M. Liwanag. 2015. “The Fat and the Furriest: Morphological Changes in Harp Seal Fur with Ontogeny.” Physiological and Biochemical Zoology 88, no. 2 (March/April): 158–66.
In the case of a source with eleven or more authors, list the first seven in the reference list, followed by “ et al. ”
Citing multiple sources with the same author and year
If you cite multiple sources by the same author that were published in the same year, it’s important to use another identifier to distinguish between them in the text.
In cases like this, list the sources in alphabetical order by title in your reference list, and add a letter after the year of each one: a, b, c, et cetera.
List the same letters after the in-text citations—which may appear in the text in a different order:
Citing sources with missing information
Sometimes not all the information required for a citation will be available.
If you need to cite a source with no publication date, write “n.d.” (“no date”) in place of the date in your in-text citation and in your reference list:
Smith, James. n.d. Example Book . New York: Norton.
If you need to cite a source with no author, there are a couple of scenarios. If you’re dealing with a source issued by an organization without a specific author listed (for example, a press release or pamphlet), you can list the organization as the author:
(University of Glasgow 2019)
University of Glasgow. 2019. “Colombian River Guardians Rally Support in Scotland.” October 14, 2019. https://www.gla.ac.uk/news/headline_678538_en.html.
If this doesn’t work for your source, begin your reference list entry with the title instead, alphabetized according to the first word of the title (ignoring articles ):
The Example Book: A Book of Examples . 2012. New York: Norton.
Here the entry would be alphabetized under “E”, not “T”, because the article is ignored for alphabetization.
For an in-text citation, use the title. If the title is longer than four words, use a shortened version of it starting with the first word (excluding articles):
( Example Book 2012)
Note that if a source is explicitly attributed to “Anonymous,” this word should simply be used as a name:
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Page numbers should be included in your Chicago in-text citations when:
- You’re quoting from the text.
- You’re paraphrasing a particular passage.
- You’re referring to information from a specific section.
When you’re referring to the overall argument or general content of a source, it’s unnecessary to include page numbers.
When a source has four or more authors , your in-text citation or Chicago footnote should give only the first author’s name followed by “ et al. ” (Latin for “and others”). This makes your citations more concise.
In your bibliography or reference list , when a source has more than 10 authors, list the first seven followed by “et al.” Otherwise, list every author.
- A reference list is used with Chicago author-date citations .
- A bibliography is used with Chicago footnote citations .
Both present the exact same information; the only difference is the placement of the year in source citations:
- In a reference list entry, the publication year appears directly after the author’s name.
- In a bibliography entry, the year appears near the end of the entry (the exact placement depends on the source type).
There are also other types of bibliography that work as stand-alone texts, such as a Chicago annotated bibliography .
In Chicago author-date style , your text must include a reference list . It appears at the end of your paper and gives full details of every source you cited.
In notes and bibliography style, you use Chicago style footnotes to cite sources; a bibliography is optional but recommended. If you don’t include one, be sure to use a full note for the first citation of each source.
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Caulfield, J. (2022, December 05). Chicago Author-Date Style | A Complete Guide to Citing Sources. Scribbr. Retrieved November 7, 2023, from https://www.scribbr.com/chicago-style/author-date/
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