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Using Chicago Style: Wesley Seminary Students: The Basics

What is the Notes/Bibliography System?

Requirements of the Notes and Bibliography style:

  • Insert a number in each place in your paper that references a source. This number is usually placed at the end of the sentence that discusses or quotes the source. Format this number as a superscript (above the line, like the number one that follows this¹).

  • For each numbered reference in your text, include a note. You may use footnotes (a numbered list of citations at the bottom of the page where the reference appears) or endnotes (a page after the body of the paper that lists all of the references in the entire paper).  

  • Include an alphabetized bibliography of full citations for each source. An example of a bibliography citation is shown at the bottom right of this page.  In alphabetizing bibliography entries, use the first element of the citation, usually the author's last name. For some, the first element is the title. When alphabetizing by title, ignore initial articles (A, An, The).
Full notes or shortened?  You might use shortened notes for two reasons:
  • When a bibliography is required, your professor might indicate that you may use shortened citations for all notes.

  • When a bibligoraphy is not required, your professor might indicate that you may use a full citation in a note when referring to a source for the first time. If you refer to a source more than once, you may use a shortened citation for the subsequent notes. The short form of a note should always include the author(s) last name(s), the title (shortened if it exceeds four words), and the page(s) to which you are referring.

Components of Notes and Bibliography Style

Insert a superscript number after a sentence including information from a source. Include a corresponding citation in a footnote or endnote and a full citation in the Bibliography. 
Chicago Style: Superscript reference number in text
Depending on the preference of your professor, you may include, on the Notes page, a full citation or a shortened citation.  The image below displays a full citation. 
Chicago Style: Full citation in footnote
Shortened citations may be used (1) in a work with no bibliography when citing a source covered earlier with a full citation or (2) in a work that requires a bibliography for all notes. 
Chicago Style: Shortened Citation in Footnote
All citations are included in a bibliography. Entries are alphabetized by the first word. Note that the publication information is formatted differently than in a full note citation.Chicago Style: Bibliography