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Using Endnotes in a Research Paper

The Chicago notes-biblio style uses research paper endnotes and footnotes. An endnote and a footnote serve the same purpose. These notes are short additions, clarifications, or copyright information. By placing an endnotes example outside of the text, you can provide the reader with a better experience. Learn how to write endnotes using an endnotes example in MLA, APA, and Chicago style.

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Using Research Paper Endnotes Example

Endnotes and footnotes are created the same way in a research paper. The difference between endnotes and footnotes is placement:

  • a footnote is at the bottom of the page
  • an endnote belongs at the end of a paper, book, or chapter

One way for students to use endnotes in their research process is to read through the text, then with a second reading, examine the notes for further information. This is a good way to find authoritative sources for your own research. You may copy any useful sources into a preliminary bibliography. Alternatively, you might write them down on your note cards. Check out an endnotes example in APA.

APA endnotes example

MLA Style

Styles, such as MLA, can use notes, but it is not common. You will probably not use this method too much in your school paper, particularly in high school.

APA Style

The preferred APA style is not to include notes. If you must include them in MLA or APA, follow these guidelines:

  • Content notes provide supplemental information that doesn’t fit in the text but is supplemental.
  • Copyright permission footnotes provide information that we need permission to reprint. Excerpts exceeding 400 words, especially from published works, benefit from copyright permission footnotes, too.

Chicago Style

One of the most common styles to include notes in a paper is in Chicago and Turabian style. Endnotes and a bibliography are included as part of the notes-biblio style. An endnotes page in Chicago Style follows the same basic format of an MLA or APA style but has the title “Notes.”

chicago endnotes example

Formatting for How to Write Endnotes

The way you write endnotes in a paper is pretty simple. Designate the notes within the text with a superscript number, such as 1. You then use the same number in the corresponding notes entry.

In some cases, authors will include notes with enough information that a bibliography is not needed. You’ll see this many times in historical books. These notes are called citation source notes. You may see texts with both footnotes and endnotes as well.

In-Text Example

Many students feel that learning about culture and diversity1 is an important part of their college education.

Endnote (Footnote) Example

     1. Mark Lessing, “Diversity in College Increases.” Education Today 5, no. 2 (Spring 2018): 12, https://doi.org/xx.xxxxx. Qualitative data show that 15 out of 20 students surveyed expressed a desire to learn more about cultural issues.

Corresponding Bibliography Entry Example

Lessing, Mark. “Diversity in College Increases,” Education Today (Spring 2018): 10-14. https://doi.org/xx.xxxxx.

Note: Remember to add https://doi.org to the DOI.


A Noteworthy Inclusion

Typically, sources in notes are cited in a bibliography as well. Some material, though, includes notes and no bibliography. As a student, you will probably be expected to provide both endnotes and a corresponding bibliographic entry. Make sure the in-text number matches the notes entry number so the reader can find the correct source.

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FAQ Using Endnotes in a Research Paper

How do you write an endnote?

How you write an endnote depends on the style you are using. In MLA and APA, endnotes are written for copyright information or to provide more content. Therefore, you'll provide the author, title, date, and additional content or copyright information. In Chicago style, an endnote is used for citations in the notes-biblio style. An endnote is on its own separate page after the body of the paper.

What are endnotes used for?

The purpose of endnotes depends on the style you are using. In Chicago, an endnote is used for in-text citations. It provides the author of the work, title, and additional location information called for in the Chicago Manual of Style. In APA and MLA, endnotes are used to provide copyright information or to clear up confusing content.

How do you cite endnotes?

To create an endnote citation in Chicago style, you include the author, title, date, and location information. However, the information you provide depends on the source. For example, a book endnote citation in Chicago looks like:
1. Garrett Mariner, Understanding Psychology (New York: Penguin Press, 2020), 120-15.

How do you do endnotes in APA format?

To create endnotes in APA style, you provide the additional content information or the copyright information. An example of an APA copyright and content endnote looks like:
Content: 1. See Mariner (2020), especially chapter 5, for...
Copyright: From the chapter “Thoughts of Others” G. Mariner, 2020, Understanding Psychology, 22, p. 125. Copyright 2020 by Copyright Holder. Reprinted by permission.

What do endnotes look like?

The look of an endnote depends on if you are using MLA, APA, or Chicago style. However, they are on a separate page at the back of the paper. It includes the title "Footnotes" or "Notes." It also has a page number in the right corner. Endnotes indent the first sentence of the citation.

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