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Chicago Citation & Style Guide

Guidance for citing sources in Chicago style.

Examples - Footnotes

Chicago Style can use one of two methods for in-text footnotes. Here at Concordia University, most of your classes that use Chicago will use the notes-bibliography method.

Notes-Bibliography means that when you cite a source, you provide a superscript note, such as a footnote, and an entry in your bibliography at the end of the paper.

There are two ways you'll use other people's words in your work.

  • Quotations: using the author's exact words
  • Paraphrases & Summaries: using the author's ideas in your own words

Here are the rules for providing in-text footnotes in both of these situations.


Rule: Introduce the quotation with a signal phrase, and place the superscript note at the end, after the closing quotation marks. (Signal phrases may or may not include the author's name.)


As Davis reported, "If the existence of a signing ape was unsettling for linguists, it was also startling news for animal behaviorists." 1

Rule: When the quotation is 5 lines or more (about 100 words), do not use quotation marks, but indent the quote .5" into its own block of text. The blocked quotation should be single-spaced.


Students having a hard time finding databases isn't a new phenomenon. At the University of Washington, they have problems too.

With the addition of so many new databases to the campus online system, many students were having difficulty locating the database they needed. At the same time, the role of Session Manager had evolved. The increased importance of the Session Manager as a selection tool made it a part of the navigation process itself.2

Footnote Example:

2. Karen Eliasen, Jill McKinstry, Beth Mabel Fraser, and Elizabeth P. Babbitt, "Navigating Online Menus: A Quantitative Experiment," College & Research Libraries 58, no. 6 (November 1997): 510.


Rule: No quotation marks required; may or may not include author's name in the text.

Example 1:

According to Davis, when they learned of an ape's ability to use sign language, both linguists and animal behaviorists were taken by surprise.3

Example 2:

When they learned of an ape's ability to use sign language, both linguists and animal behaviorists were taken by surprise.4

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