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Chicago Manual of Style: General Guidelines

The purpose of this guide is to show you how to cite your resources using the Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition). It provides useful tips and examples for organizing your work and bibliography.

Layout & Formatting

General Guidelines:

  • Double-space the main text
  • Single-space figure captions and table titles
  • Single-space table of contents, footnotes/endnotes, and bibliography, but add a blank line before and after each item listed in them
  • Font: Times New Roman (12-point) or Arial (10 point)
  • Margins: 1 inch on all sides
  • Page number: top of the page - in the center or justified to the right margin
  • Number all pages, except pages of notes and works cited pages
  • One space between sentences (not two spaces)
  • New paragraphs: one-half inch (Tab button)

Direct Quotes

Short quotations

  • Less than 5 lines of text or 100 words
  • Use quotation marks

Note: single (' ') quotation marks in British English and double (" ") quotation marks in American English.

Long quotations (block quotations)

  • More than 5 lines of text or 100 words; 2 or more lines of poetry; 2 or more paragraphs;
  • Single space
  • Start the quotation on a new line
  • Indent it with one half inch on the left side (use indent/tab)
  • Do not use quotation marks (except if they appear in the original text)
  • Blank line before and after the block
  • One space between sentences

Changing a quotation:

  • Do not change any words if you are writing a direct quotation.
  • Use an ellipsis '...' to indicate words omitted from the quotation.
  • Use square brackets '[ ]' to indicate any additional words you have added to the quotation to clarify it.


Short Quotations:

According to Douglas¹, stealing another person's ideas is tantamount to stealing their soul".

Long Quotations:

It has been found that children in schools are often

     ...found to be lacking [those] skills of knowing how to put the ideas of others into their own words without using the source text verbatim. In the age where text messaging invites modifications of language that abbreviate whole words to a single letter or figure, it appears that this skill in brevity has not translated into adequate styles of paraphrasing abstract within academic contexts.²

Bibliography Structure / Example


Footnotes / Endnotes

  • Footnotes: at the bottom of the page where the the source is referenced
  • Endnotes: at the end of each chapter

Note: you can either use footnotes or endnotes, but not both in the same text.

Write a footnote/endnote every time you use another source (when you use a direct quote, paraphrase or summarize).

Citation numbers

  • In text: in superscript; consecutive numbers that correspond to a note with bibliographic information (consecutive for an article or book chapter, not for an entire book); placed to the right of commas, full stops and inverted commas and to the left of colons and semi-colons; usually put at the end of the sentence where the source has been cited;
  • In notes: begins with the appropriate full size number, than full stop and space, followed by the complete bibliographic information of the source (any following citation of the same work is shortened - subsequent note); the elements are separated with commas;

Note: the bibliographic information in the notes follows a specific structure (see the 'Citing Books' section for more detailed information)

The first time you mention a source you give the full citation details. Every subsequent note of the same source is in shortened form.

  • Full citation notes: Author's First name, Last name, Title, (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), Page
  • Shortened citation notes: Author's Last name, Shortened title, Page
Note: ibid. - an abbreviation indicating that you repeat the immediately preceding citation. The use of ibid. in the 17th edition of Chicago is rather discouraged in favor of the shortened citations.


In text:

According to Douglas¹ "stealing another person's ideas is tantamount to stealing their soul".

In notes:

1. Greg Douglas, Reasoning Critically: The Ethical Way (Richmond: Swaledale Press, 2010), 72

2. Douglas, Reasoning Critically, 85


  • Bibliography: a list with full bibliographic information about the sources you have cited in your work.
  • Stats on a separate page at the end of the paper/chapter and it is titled 'Bibliography'.
  • The sources are ordered alphabetically by first author's surname or by title, if no author appears.
  • First author's name is inverted and separated with a comma 'Surname, First name'. Additional authors of the same work are listed in 'First name Surname' format.
  • The bibliographic elements are separated by a period (not comma).
  • More than two entries by the same author are listed alphabetically by title and the author's name is replaced by a dash.
  • Bibliography is single-spaced with an extra space between each bibliographic entry.
  • Each bibliography entry starts at the left margin and every subsequent line of the same entry is indented about 5 spaces, the so called 'hanging indent'.
  • Titles of books and journals are italicized and titles of articles, book chapters and poems are in quotation marks.



Douglas, Greg. Reasoning Critically: The Ethical Way. Richmond: Swaledale Press, 2010

Squire, Larry R. “The Hippocampus and the Neuropsychology of Memory.” In Neurobiology of                         the Hippocampus, edited by W. Seifert, 491-511. New York: Oxford University Press, 1983.

———. Memory and Brain. New York: Oxford University Press, 1987.


Examples and information for this guide were retrieved from: