The Chicago notes-biblio style uses endnotes and footnotes. An endnote and a footnote serve the same purpose. The difference is placement: a footnote is at the bottom of the page, whereas an endnote belongs at the end of a paper, book or chapter. These notes are short additions, clarifications or copyright information. By placing them outside of the text, you can provide the reader with a better experience.
One way for students to use notes 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.
Other styles, such as MLA, may use endnotes. However, you will probably not use this method too much in your school paper, particularly in high school.
The preferred APA style is not to include notes. If you must include them, 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.
Designate the notes within the text with a superscript number, such as 1. Use the same number in the corresponding notes entry.
In some cases, authors will simply include notes with enough information so 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.
Endnote (Footnote) Example
Corresponding Bibliography Entry Example
A Noteworthy Inclusion
Typically, sources in endnotes are cited in a bibliography as well. Some material, though, simply 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.