Chicago Notes & Bibliography (17th ed.)
The Chicago Manual of Style leaves a great deal unspecified and up to interpretation. The NPS Citation Guide streamlines and simplifies Chicago’s guidance; your professors, coaches, and processors may interpret or explain Chicago’s guidelines slightly differently. Ultimately, the responsibility for clear attribution of source material lies with you, the author.
If you do not see the rule you need, consult the manual or website for your style.
Warning: Do not replace author names with 3-em dashes until List of References is properly alphabetized.
For successive entries by the same author, editor, translator, or compiler, a 3-em dash (followed by a period or comma, depending on the presence of an abbreviation such as ed.) replaces the name after the first appearance (but see 14.67). Alphabetization is by title of work (abbreviations such as ed. or trans., which must always be included, do not influence the order of entries). See also 14.71.
Do not include honorifics (Dr., Col., Professor, etc.) when citing author names. Including these titles in the body of your document is acceptable.
For the National Security Strategy, cite the president as the author.
For other official documents, the author is the organization immediately responsible for creating the document. In the example below, the author is the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and the publisher is the Department of the Navy.
In the example above, the author is NOT an umbrella organization, signatory, or any of the following:
Do not include acronyms for organizations listed as authors in the List of References or footnotes:
The NPS Thesis Processing Office prefers a List of References for the following:
|Title Case||Sentence case|
|Love among the Ruins: A Memoir of Life and Love in Hamburg, 1945||Love among the ruins: A memoir of life and love in Hamburg, 1945|
Capitalize everything except:
Note: Always format the information in your citations (titles, author names, etc.) according to the requirements of the citation style you are using, regardless of how it appears in the original source.
A citation is required if you did not wholly create the figure—i.e., if you used someone else's image or data. A citation is not needed when all elements of the figure are your own creation.
Figure 1. A Figure with a Citation in Chicago Notes and Bibliography Style1
1 Source: Ged Griffin, “Managing Peacekeeping Communications,” Journal of Business Continuity & Emergency Planning 3, no. 4 (2009): 325.
1 Adapted from Ged Griffin, “Managing Peacekeeping Communications,” Journal of Business Continuity & Emergency Planning 3, no. 4 (2009): 325.
When citing more than one source in a single sentence, there are two options:
Never place more than one footnote at the end of a sentence. CMS 14.28.
In the paragraph below, the reference numbers are highlighted in yellow and the signal phrases are highlighted in blue. Note that the second sentence is common knowledge, whereas the final sentence does not need a citation because it is the opinion of the author. (See "How often do I cite?")
* Note: no page number is necessary in footnote 1 because the sentence describes the source’s general argument rather than data or analysis from a specific location in the source.
1 Shawna Jackson, “Color’s Effect on Restaurant Patrons,” Journal of Restaurant Marketing 13, no. 4 (April 1999).
2 Roberta Chen and David Lopez, Color Me Hungry: How to Decorate Your Restaurant to Increase Profit and Patronage (New York: Routledge, 2009), 3.
3 Chen and Lopez, 29.
4 Jackson, “Color’s Effect on Restaurant Patrons,” 18; and Chen and Lopez, Color Me Hungry, 74–76.
The Chicago Manual of Style advises that “footnotes should be placed where you need them. . . . Whenever you can imagine the reader asking ‘Says who’ you should add a note.” Clarity is your goal as a writer, and what constitutes clear attribution in any given context will depend to some extent on the particulars of your text. Nevertheless, the following are some reliable rules of thumb:
Chicago prefers shorter citations, but ibid. is still allowed when the footnote is identical to the one right before it. See CMS 14.34. Be consistent. Use either ibid. or shorter citations.
|11 Toni Morrison, Beloved (New York: Vintage, 2004), 3.||full citation on first appearance|
|12 Morrison, 18.||shorter citation indicating continued use of Beloved|
|13 Morrison, 18.||shorter citation indicating continued use of Beloved|
|14 Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon (New York: Vintage, 2004), 45.||full citation on first appearance|
|15 Morrison, 47.||shorter citation indicating continued use of Song of Solomon|
|16 Morrison, Beloved, 52.||short citation reintroducing Beloved, a source already cited in full|
|17 Morrison, 55.||shorter citation indicating continued use of Beloved|
|18 Morrison, Song of Solomon, 324–25.||short citation reintroducing Song of Solomon, a source already cited in full|
|19 Morrison, 238.||shorter citation indicating continued use of Song of Solomon|
|20 Morrison, 239.||shorter citation indicating continued use of Song of Solomon|
|21 Morrison, Song of Solomon, 240; Beloved, 32.||short citation indicating that the information comes from two sources already cited in full (a shorter citation, which leaves out the title(s), would be ambiguous and therefore insufficient)|
|22 Morrison, Beloved, 33.||short citation indicating which of the two Morrison sources the information is from|
|23 Morrison, 34.||shorter citation continuing to refer only to Beloved|
|24 FBI, “Stolen Memories.”||short citation reintroducing an online source already cited in full (not shown here)|
|25 FBI.||shorter citation indicating continued use of the FBI source|
|26 Hawthorne and Nekeip, "A Shortening of Citations," 23.||short citation reintroducing a source already cited in full (not shown here)|
|27 Hawthorne and Nekeip, 564.||shorter citation indicating continued use of Hawthorne and Nekeip|
If any information is missing from a source (a journal with no volume number, for example), simply omit that information. For sources consulted in hardcopy, omit the URL and any additional verbiage that introduces it. Anything retrieved online, however, MUST have a link. The only exception is journals retrieved from a subscription database such as ProQuest.
In footnotes, the page number(s) is needed when
N: Michael Pollan and Daisy Potatohead, The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals (New York: Penguin, 2006), 99–100.
S: Pollan and Potatohead, The Omnivore’s Dilemma, 100.
If the source does not contain page numbers, often with electronic formats, include as much information as needed for the reader to locate the material. In citations especially of shorter electronic works presented as a single, searchable document, such locators may be unnecessary.
|chapter number||chap. 2|
|paragraph number||para. 3|
|descriptive phrase||under "The Battleground"|
|location numbers||loc. 444 of 3023, Kindle|
|page numbers||check against—and cite to—the printed version if possible|
|table, figure, or slide number||table 1.4
In the list of references/bibliography
For portions of larger documents, such as journal articles and book chapters, include the page range.
B: Haynes, Peter. “Al-Qaeda, Oil Dependence, and U.S. Foreign Policy.” In Energy Security and Global Politics: The Militarization of Resource Management, edited by Daniel Moran and James A. Russell, 62–74. New York: Routledge, 2009.
When citing a source retrieved online, use the "online" format even when you or someone else printed out the material. For example, if you print out a thesis or your advisor provides you with a printed thesis, it is still categorized as an online document.
Only cite as a print source when the material has been produced by a publisher in hard copy. For example, if you obtain a print journal or book from the library stacks, it is categorized as a printed source.
An indirect source is a source that cites some other work that you discuss in your text.
Whenever possible, consult primary sources and your sources’ sources yourself. Upon investigation of the primary source, you may find you disagree with the indirect source author’s analysis or methods.
The following passage incorporates a properly credited indirect source. The indirect source information is highlighted in yellow; the primary source information is highlighted in blue.
Walker describes Miguel Roig’s 1999 experiment, which correlates inadequate paraphrasing in student writing with poor reading comprehension.1 Citing Roig’s data, Walker explains that “students do in fact possess skills necessary for paraphrasing but … may be impeded from applying those skills when dealing with rigorous text.”2
Note: Footnotes for indirect sources must cite both the primary and the indirect source; in the references list, include only the indirect source (the source you consulted—see example).
See the TPO's "Citing Your Sources’ Sources" handout.
A citation is required if you did not wholly create the table—i.e., if you used someone else's data. A citation is not needed when all elements of the table are your own creation.
Table 1. A Table with a Citation in Chicago Notes and Bibliography Style1
1 Source: Roberto Suro, “Changing Channels and Crisscrossing Culture: A Survey of Latinos on News Media,” Pew Research Center, April 19, 2004, https://www.pewhispanic.org/2004/04/19/changing-channels-and-crisscrossing-cultures/.
1 Adapted from Roberto Suro, “Changing Channels and Crisscrossing Culture: A Survey of Latinos on News Media,” Pew Research Center, April 19, 2004, https://www.pewhispanic.org/2004/04/19/changing-channels-and-crisscrossing-cultures/.
For works with a translator, follow the format for edited books but substitute "trans." for "ed." in the notes and "translated" for "edited" in the references:
N: Maxence Manqué, Old and Rejected Poems, trans. Pemily Hickinson (Scituate, MA: Narrow Fellow Press, 1989), 472.
S: Manqué, Old and Rejected Poems, 889.
B: Manqué, Maxence. Old and Rejected Poems. Translated by Pemily Hickinson. Scituate, MA: Narrow Fellow Press, 1989.
If you provide the translation to a non-English work, format the original title in sentence case, then give your translated title, also in sentence case, in square brackets immediately following. Note that the other formatting rules for titles—italics and quotation marks—remain the same:
N: Maxence Manqué, "L'esthétique de l'échec" [The aesthetics of failure], in Éviter les clichés et des autres clichés [Avoiding clichés and other clichés], ed. Hamish Sweeney (New Brunswick: Stew & Offspring, 1992), 5.
S: Manqué, "L'esthétique de l'échec," 11.
B: Manqué, Maxence. "L'esthétique de l'échec" [The aesthetics of failure]. In Éviter les clichés et des autres clichés [Avoiding clichés and other clichés], edited by Hamish Sweeney, 3–44. New Brunswick: Stew & Offspring, 1992.