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Quick Tips On How To Organize The Footnotes In A Chicago Style Essay

If you are given an essay in the humanities, you are likely to use the Chicago style format. It provides you with guidelines on how to reference your sources using the footnoted and endnotes. You can find the full description of the style’s nuances in the manual in your school’s library or writing lab. The following quick tips are designed to help you get started.

How to Use Footnotes in the Chicago Style: Basic Tips

Each time you use a source, you should include a note. Usually, students use footnotes that are added at the end of the page on which they mentioned a particular source. If you are working on an extended essay, you may also consider using endnotes. A list of endnotes should be compiled at the end of your paper.

The general rule is that you should place a superscript number that corresponds to a note with the bibliographic description for that source right in the text of your paper at the end of the sentence where you refer to it. Make sure that you include all necessary information about the source in the first note, such as the author’s name, title, and publication details.

The second note for the same source should only include the author’s last name, a shortened form of the title, and a page number. If you reference to the same source two or more times in a row, use the “Ibid.” abbreviation. It means “in the same place.” In case you use a different page number, you should use “Ibid.”, then put a comma, and provide the new page number.

How to Format Footnotes: Details to Remember

The following details are important to remember when you are formatting footnotes in your Chicago style essay:

  • Begin the note numbers with “1” and continue consequently throughout your paper.
  • Remember to superscript all the numbers.
  • Place the note numbers after all punctuation marks.
  • Consider using full-sized numbers in the notes themselves.
  • Place a period after the number in the note.
  • Use a half-inch indent from the left margin in the first line of a footnote.
  • Format subsequent lines within a footnote flush left.
  • Insert an extra line space between your notes.

It is recommended that you find and use a sample essay formatted in the Chicago style. You can ask your instructor for a paper’s sample or search online. Use the materials provided on the websites of educational institutions so that you will get edited and proofread documents created for students.