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Sample Footnotes in MLA Style

What Are Footnotes?

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You must provide information about author, title, and date of the document you are using, as follows:. The first time any book or article is mentioned in a footnote, all the information requested above must be provided. After that, however, there are shortcuts which should be used:.

The abbreviation to be used is "Ibid. University of Toronto Press, , Clark, Irwin and Company Limited, , The bibliography should be on a separate page. It should list the relevant sources used in the research for the paper.

This list should be arranged alphabetically by the surname of the author. Unlike the footnote reference, the surname is shown first, set off from the rest of the information. The information required is: The information is separated for the most part by periods rather than by commas, as in the footnotes and the parentheses enclosing the facts of publication are dropped.

Frontenac The Courtier Governor. Instead of including publishing information about the source in the footnote, often writers will footnote additional "asides" or tangentially related information in footnotes, often gleaned from other resources not directly cited. David Foster Wallace, in his long novel Infinite Jest made use of pages-long footnotes as a kind of in-joke. In academic writing, this should be used sparingly, but is common in memoir or other non-fiction styles of prose.

Science writing conventions will often footnote additional research studies that came to similar conclusions, but aren't being directly cited in the study at hand. If a paper quoted a source that talked about wikiHow articles and you wanted to clarify it, your footnote after the number might look like this: Use these types of footnotes sparingly.

Long explanatory footnotes are distracting to the reader. If you find yourself with lots of extra information you need to put into footnotes, consider finding a place for it in the text, or otherwise revising the article or essay to account for it. Editors will often recommend that any information included in parentheses in a piece of academic writing be footnoted instead. Consider the progression of the prose, the "flow" of the writing, and see if asides might be better off at the bottom of the page.

Double-check that a footnote is appropriate. Before using footnotes to reference sources, check with your editor or instructor to make sure you should cite the sources using a footnote. Typically, MLA or APA guidelines prefer you use a parenthetical in-text citation of a source, rather than a footnote, and reserve footnotes for supplementary information or alternative references to the same information.

Footnotes are to be used only when necessary. In Chicago style, footnotes are used in place of parenthetical citations and are more common. A bibliography is a list of your sources as well as a location in your paper for where the information from that source was used. A footnote is to help further explain or give a specific source at the end of a page. These sources that go in the footnotes also need to go in the bibliography, but sources in the bibliography are not required to be added as footnotes.

Not Helpful 5 Helpful If you have been asked to footnote and it's a quote, phrase or any piece of evidence then you definitely need to footnote it. Not Helpful 21 Helpful If I need to add three footnotes using the same citation information, how do I label the footnotes? Put all of the information in the first citation. For the others, use "ibid" and page number only as long as the information is from the same book. Not Helpful 34 Helpful While reading a book or article, have you ever noticed little numbers placed at the ends of some sentences?

These numbers usually appear as superscripts and correspond with numbers placed at the bottom of the page, next to which appears further information that is both necessary and supplementary. Sometimes this information will come in the form of citations, but sometimes it will simply present additional notes about the topic at hand. These citations and explanations are called footnotes because they appear in the footer of the page.

Take a look at the example below to see where footnotes appear on a page:. Long explanatory notes can be difficult for readers to trudge through when they occur in the middle of a paper. Providing this information is necessary, but doing so in the main text can disrupt the flow of the writing.

Imagine if every time an author wanted to provide a citation, the entire citation had to be written out at the end of the sentence, like this Anthony Grafton, The Footnote: Harvard University Press, ] Books would become much longer and reading much more tedious. That's why footnotes are so useful: Footnotes can include anything from a citation to parenthetical information, outside sources, copyright permissions, background information, and anything in between, though certain style guides restrict when footnotes can be used.

We'll get into that soon! Authors can also use endnotes to avoid disrupting their writing with extraneous information. As with footnotes, the presence of an endnote is identified in the main text with a small superscript number. However, instead of providing the correlating note at the bottom of the same page, endnotes are found collectively at the end of an article, chapter, or document.

When deciding whether to use footnotes or endnotes , authors must consider three main factors: However, footnotes are occasionally employed in other style guides as well. While MLA style discourages the use of long footnotes or endnotes, the style guide does permit their use for directing readers to other pertinent information on a relevant subject. The guide recommends that superscript numbers within the text are placed outside any punctuation that might be present i. The exception to this is that the superscript numbers should be placed before dashes.

Even then, the guide recommends that footnotes only be used to provide content notes such as providing brief, supplemental information about the text or directing readers to additional information and to denote copyright permissions. Of the three main style guides described here, CMS relies on footnotes the most. While CMS does allow the author—date system of in-text referencing i.

In both cases, bibliographies are also required. Whether an author should use the author—date system or footnotes is often decided by the author's professor, journal, or publisher.

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How to Use Footnotes. Footnotes must be listed numerically and consecutively, both in your essay and in your Footnote citation. Footnote numbers must be superscripted. In your text, add a superscripted number immediately after the quote or reference cited with no space.

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Location of footnotes/ notes Notes may be placed at the foot of the page ('footnotes') or at the end of an essay ('notes' or 'endnotes'). If you are writing a thesis of several chapters, place the notes at the end of the thesis, not at the end of a chapter (they can be difficult to find).

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Footnotes appear at the bottom of the page and endnotes come at the end of the document. A number or symbol on the footnote or endnote matches up with a reference mark in the document. Click where you want to reference to the footnote or endnote. To use footnotes in your own book, essay, or article, you must first decide on the most appropriate and logical placement of your footnotes in the text. Add numbers according to your chosen style guide, and be sure to add the numbers directly after the phrase, clause, or .

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22 Sample Paragraph with Footnotes and a Bibliography In the field of music, we usually use the Chicago Manual of Style (CMS) citation system (not MLA, APA, etc.); see the chart on the following pages for examples of how to format footnotes and bibliography entries for various kinds of items. Footnotes and Bibliography ( KB) The Use of Footnotes. Footnotes are the acceptable method of acknowledging material which is not your own when you use it in an essay. Basically, footnoted material is of three types: Direct quotations from another author's work. (These must .