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Chicago Citation Style (17th Edition): General Guidelines

This guide will help you cite sources using the Chicago Citation Style 17th edition.

General Guidelines

The following guidelines are based on The Chicago Manual of Style (17th ed.).  Numbers in parentheses refer to the specific sections and pages referenced in the manual.

Remember that all sources of information and data, whether quoted directly or paraphrased, are cited with a note in the paper, as well as an entry in the bibliography at the end of the paper. (p. 655).

For more examples and information, consult the WSA Library copy of The Chicago Manual of Style (17th ed.), located at the librarian's desk. 


Note numbers in the text are set as superscript numbers.  At the bottom of the page, the note numbers are normally full-size and followed by a period. Notes should be numbered consecutively, beginning with 1.  In most word processing programs, you can use the "footnote" feature to accomplish this formatting. (p. 665).

  • The first note referring to a work should always be a full note.  Subsequent citations for that work can be shortened.  The concise form should include just enough information to remind readers of the full title or lead them to the bibliography, usually the last name of the author(s), the key words of the main title, and the page number.  Check with your instructor to determine whether this concise form is acceptable. (p. 667-669)


1. Salman Rushdie, The Ground Beneath Her Feet (New York: Henry Holt, 1999), 25.
2. RushdieThe Ground Beneath, 25.

  • The abbreviation ibid. (from ibidem, “in the same place”) usually refers to a single work cited in the note immediately preceding. In a departure from previous editions, Chicago discourages the use of ibid. in favor of shortened citations as described above; to avoid repetition, the title of a work just cited may be omitted. Note that the abbreviated form (author only) is appropriate only when it refers to the last item cited; where this is not the case, or where the previous note cites more than one source, the fuller form of the shortened citation must be repeated.


1. Rushdie, The Ground Beneath, 25.
2. Rushdie., 28.

  • When the note entry includes a URL that must be divided between two lines, break it after a colon or a double slash or before a tilde (~), period, single slash, comma or hyphen. (p.659)


List Bibliography entries with a hanging indent. (example on p. 686).

  • Bibliography entries are in one alphabetical sequence arranged by the surname of the first author or by title if there is no author.  They are not classified by type of source. (p. 690)
  • Use the author's given names and surname as listed on the title page, not the cover. If there is more than one author, list them in the order used on the title page. (p. 793)
  • If the Bibliography includes two or more entries by the same author(s), list them alphabetically by title. A  3-em dash (---.) replaces the author's name after the first entry. ( pp. 691-693)


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.

  • When the note entry includes a URL that must be divided between two lines, break it after a colon or a double slash or before a tilde (~), period, single slash, comma or hyphen. (p. 659)

Learn More

Formatting of papers in Chicago Style:

Citations and bibliographies in Chicago Style:

The Chicago Manual of Style Online:
Online guides from university libraries:


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