Chicago Referencing – Journal Articles
  • 3-minute read
  • 4th March 2016

Chicago Referencing – Journal Articles

The Chicago Manual of Style is popular among academic publishers in the social sciences and humanities. If you’re studying in one of these areas, it’s therefore vital to understand Chicago referencing. This form of referencing actually permits two citation styles: author–date in-text citations and a “notes and bibliography” version.

In this post we cover how to cite a journal article using both approaches. But remember to check which one your university uses before starting your paper!

Author–Date Citations

Chicago’s in-text citation system uses parenthetical citations, which should include the surname of the author and year of publication for the article cited:

Promoting self-referencing in audiences makes advertising more effective (Burnkrant and Unnava 1995).

If you’re quoting a source, the citation should also include page numbers:

Research suggests that “an increase in self-referencing leads to an increase in recall” (Burnkrant and Unnava 1995, 17).

Each source cited should be added to a reference list at the end of your document, with full bibliographic details provided for each:

Author Name(s). Year of Publication. “Title of Article.” Journal Name Volume (Issue Number): Page Range.

The reference list should be sorted alphabetically by author surname, so the first author of any article will be listed surname first.

For online versions of a journal article, you should also include an access date and URL:

Burnkrant, Robert E. and H. Rao Unnava. 1995. Effects of Self-Referencing on Persuasion. Journal of Consumer Research 22 (1): 17–26. Accessed January 19, 2016.

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Notes and Bibliography

Rather than cite sources in the text, Chicago’s notes and bibliography system uses superscript numbers (e.g., 1, 2, 3) to point to footnotes. The basic format for citing a journal article in a footnote is:

n. Author Name(s), “Title of Article,” Journal Name Volume Number, Issue Number (Year of Publication): Page Number.

Page numbers are only necessary when quoting or paraphrasing a section of text. For online articles, you should also include a URL and, if required by your style guide, a date of access.

This full information is only provided in the first citation for each source. For Burnkrant and Unnava, this would appear as:

1. Robert E. Burnkrant and H. Rao Unnava, “Effects of Self-Referencing on Persuasion,” Journal of Consumer Research 22, no. 4 (1995): 25, accessed January 19, 2016,

Subsequent citations of the same source use a shortened format, focusing on the author, title and page numbers:

2. Burnkrant and Unnava, “Effects of Self-Referencing on Persuasion,” 22–3.

All cited sources should be listed in a bibliography at the end of your paper. The format here is similar to the first footnote for journal articles, but with the first listed author name reversed and the full page range included:

Burnkrant, Robert E. and H. Rao Unnava. “Effects of Self-Referencing on Persuasion.” Journal of Consumer Research 22, no. 4 (1995): 17–26. Accessed January 19, 2016.

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