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Referencing using the Note System

In the Note system, place superscript numbers after each source of borrowing, and give complete details about your source in a footnote that carries the same superscript number at the foot of the page. Full publication details must be given in a bibliography at the end of the text. Footnotes are not included in the required word length of essays in the School of Humanities.

Endnotes contain the same information as footnotes, but instead of being placed at the foot of the page on which the reference occurs, they are gathered together on a page headed “Notes” that follows the main text of your essay, but precedes your bibliography. Most word-processing software will give you the choice of using footnotes or endnotes, and they are equally acceptable, though many readers prefer footnotes for immediacy and ease of accessibility to the reference.

Note that:

  • the first footnoted or endnoted reference to a work must provide your readers with all the bibliographic information they would need to find the work;
  • article titles are given minimal capitalisation but book and journal titles are capitalised;
  • book and journal titles are italicised or underlined. Article and chapter titles are not;
  • article and chapter titles appear in quotation marks;
  • titles of poems and short stories appear in quotation marks;
  • all notes, whether or not they form full sentences, must end with a full stop.

Numbering footnotes/endnotes in your text

Number footnotes consecutively throughout your assignment or essay. The superscript footnote number goes after an item to be acknowledged or annotated, and after any punctuation following that item. Generally, place these numbers at natural breaks in your text – usually at the ends of sentences – in order to keep them unobtrusive.

If you refer to the same source, say, seven times, there will be seven separate note identifiers within the text which relate to that source. You must also provide seven endnotes or footnotes. This practice should be simplified by providing full bibliographic details only in the first footnote; details in the subsequent references to a source do not need to be as comprehensive as the first – often the author’s surname and the page number to which you are referring are sufficient – but they should leave your reader in no doubt as to the precise identity of the reference. For example, if there are two books by the same author, you will need to provide an abbreviated title as well as the author’s name, so that there is sufficient detail for the reader to establish to which text you are referring. Never underline or italicise the author’s name.

Examples

Notes follow a who-what-where-when pattern. Begin with the author’s name, and work your way from the most specific information to the most general. If your note is adequate, it should be possible for other researchers to go directly to the document you cite, no matter how obscure the source. Below are some basic examples of different types of footnote reference; more detail for each kind of reference is available in the MHRA Style Guide; see Section 10.2.

A BOOK

Author’s name, Title in Italics (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), p. (page number of quote).

Use “p.” if the quotation or information comes from a single page, and “pp.” if it runs across two or more pages.

If your source has more complex publication details – for example an editor, translator, a specific edition and so on – this information must be included, and is incorporated into the note as appropriate, in the following order:
- Author’s name
- Title in Italics
- Name of editor/translator/reviser: these should be preceded by the appropriate phrase – “ed. by”; “trans. by”; “rev. by”
- Series Title, if any
- Detail of which edition has been used, using the abbreviation “edn” without a full stop: for example, 3rd edn, or rev. edn
- Number of volumes if more than one, using the format “vols” without a full stop: for example, 4 vols
- Details of publication, i.e. name of publisher and location of publisher
- Volume number, if necessary, using small capital roman numerals
- Page number(s): use “p.” if the quotation or information comes from a single page, and “pp.” if it runs across two or more pages.

CHAPTERS OR ARTICLES IN A BOOK OR EDITED COLLECTION

Author’s name, ‘Title of Chapter or Article in single quotation marks’, in Title of Book in Italics, ed. by Editor’s name (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), pp. inclusive page numbers (p. page number of the particular reference or quotation).

It is essential that you give the name of the author of the chapter or article first, as it is their work you are citing, not the work of the editor. Put the title of the essay in quotation marks, and follow this with the full bibliographic details of the book, following the format given above. In subsequent footnotes, be sure to cite the name of the author and not the editor.

ARTICLES IN SCHOLARLY JOURNALS

Author’s name, ‘Title of Article in single quotation marks’, Title of Journal in Italics, Volume Number (Year of Publication in parentheses), inclusive page numbers – not preceded by pp. (p. page number of the particular reference or quotation).

Note that in references to journal articles the inclusive page numbers are not preceded by “pp.”, but “p.” or “pp.” does appear before the parenthesised page number(s) of the particular reference or quotation.

AN ARTICLE IN A NEWSPAPER OR MAGAZINE

Author’s name, ‘Title of article in single quotation marks’, Title of Newspaper/Magazine in Italics, date of issue, section title if necessary, p. page number of the particular reference or quotation.

Note that references to articles in newspapers or magazines do not require the volume or part number: the date of issue is sufficient. For the correct format of dates, see dates and numbers in this guide.

AN UNPUBLISHED THESIS OR DISSERTATION

Author’s name, ‘Title of Thesis or Dissertation in single quotation marks’ (details of degree level – e.g. unpublished masters thesis, University, date), p. page number of the particular reference or quotation.

Be aware that in universities in the United States of America, the term “thesis” usually refers to a masters degree, and the term “dissertation” indicates a doctoral degree.

A PLAY OR LONG POEM

Use the same format for footnotes for books if they are published as a single text, or for chapters or articles in books, if they are included in an anthology.

A FILM OR BROADCAST

Title in Italics. Dir. Name of Director. Film’s distributor. Year of release.

Note that for films (as for recordings of music or speech) each of these elements should be separated by full stops.

AN ELECTRONIC SOURCE

Follow as far as possible the formats for printed sources. Give information as appropriate in the following order:
- Author’s name
- Title of item in single quotation marks
- Title of complete resource/work/website in italics
- Publication details such as volume, issue number, date
- Full address/URL, in angle brackets < >
- Date on which the resource was accessed, in square brackets – e.g. [accessed 21 January 2005]
- Location of passage cited within entire article/cite in parentheses – this information is often given in paragraph or line numbers because of lack of “page numbers”.

OTHER KINDS OF REFERENCES:

AN UNPUBLISHED ARCHIVAL DOCUMENT

Give as much information as you possibly can, beginning with the specific and moving out to general information. For example:

Author’s name, description of document – e.g. letter, date, title of archive/collection, location in archive – e.g. box or folder number, location of archive – e.g. name of library or government department, name of city.

A SOURCE QUOTED AT SECOND HAND

A quotation is assumed to come at first hand from the source cited. If it is actually at second hand — that is, if you have found the quotation not directly, but within another text — acknowledge that fact by referring to both the original and intermediate sources. Give the name of the author and the title of the work from which the quotation originally comes, followed by a comma and the phrase “as cited in”; then give the reference, in the appropriate format, of the text in which you found the quotation.

A TEXT INCLUDED WITHIN A COURSE HANDBOOK OR TEXT BOOKLET

Your source might be a copy of an article or text which has been included within a handbook for your course. If this is the source you are using, you should acknowledge this. The format for a footnote regarding a text included within a course booklet is as follows:

Author’s name, ‘Title of Text in single quotation marks’, in Name of Course Booklet in Italics (Adelaide: Name of Department, Flinders University, date), p. page number of source.

The publication details are located within the parentheses.

Bibliography (Note System)

In the note referencing system, a page entitled “Bibliography” must be included at the end of an assignment or essay. On this page, you must list all the works from which you have quoted, to which you have referred, or upon which you have drawn on as a critical source. You should, in principle, include a reference to anything you have read in relation to the topic, unless you are certain that it has had no influence at all on your essay. Students’ essays, like all academic writing, must include a bibliography, even if it only cites one text.

A bibliography contains essentially the same information as is provided in footnotes/endnotes, but it is presented in a slightly different format.

• Works are listed alphabetically according to the surname name of the author.
• The author’s name is reversed, so that the surname appears before the last name. Surnames are given first, because it is the surname that determines the item’s position in the alphabetical list. If a work is by more than one author, only the first author’s name need be reversed.
• Inclusive page numbers must be provided for journal articles and essays in edited collections.
• Full stops are not required at the end of each entry.

Examples

A BOOK

A basic bibliography entry for a book takes the following format:

Surname, First name, Title in Italics (Place of publication: Publisher, Year)

For a bibliographic entry for a more complex reference – for example, references that must include editors, translators, specific editions and so on – give details of these additional elements as appropriate in the same order suggested for footnotes above. For more detail on these more complex types of reference, see the MHRA Style Guide, Section 10.6.

CHAPTERS OR ARTICLES IN A BOOK OR EDITED COLLECTION

Surname, First name, ‘Title of Chapter or Article in single quotation marks’, in Title of Book in Italics, ed. by Editor’s Name (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), pp. inclusive page numbers

ARTICLES IN SCHOLARLY JOURNALS

Surname, First name, ‘Title of Article in single quotation marks’, Title of Journal in Italics, Volume number (Year of publication in parentheses), inclusive page numbers – not preceded by pp.

AN ARTICLE IN A NEWSPAPER OR MAGAZINE

Surname, First name, ‘Title of Article in single quotation marks’, Title of Newspaper/Magazine in Italics, date of issue, section title if necessary, pp. inclusive page numbers

Note that references to articles in newspapers or magazines do not require the volume or part number: the date of issue is sufficient. For the correct format of dates, see dates and numbers in this guide.

AN UNPUBLISHED THESIS OR DISSERTATION

Surname, First Name, ‘Title of Thesis or Dissertation in single quotation marks’ (details of degree level – e.g. unpublished masters thesis, University, date).

Be aware that in universities in the United States of America, the term “thesis” usually refers to a masters degree, and the term “dissertation” indicates a doctoral degree.

A PLAY OR LONG POEM

Use the same format for bibliographic entries for books if they are published as a single text, or for chapters or articles in books, if they are included in an anthology.

A FILM OR BROADCAST

Surname of Director, First name of Director, dir. Title in Italics. Film’s distributor. Year of release

Note that for films (as for recordings of music or speech) each of these elements should be separated by full stops.

AN ELECTRONIC SOURCE

Surname, First name, ‘Title of item in single quotation marks’, Title of complete resource/website in italics, Publication details as appropriate <URL in angle brackets> [date accessed in square brackets]

OTHER KINDS OF REFERENCES:

AN UNPUBLISHED ARCHIVAL DOCUMENT

Give as much information as you possibly can, beginning with the specific and moving out to general information. For example:

Surname, First name, description of document (e.g. letter, date, title of archive/collection), location in archive (e.g. box or folder number), location of archive (e.g. name of library or government department, name of city).


A TEXT INCLUDED WITHIN A COURSE HANDBOOK OR TEXT BOOKLET

Surname, First name, ‘Title of Text in single quotation marks’, in Name of Course Booklet in Italics (Adelaide: Name of Department, Flinders University, date), pp. inclusive page numbers


 

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Professor Graham Tulloch of the English Department has written a booklet entitled English Grammar: A Short Guide. This text covers fundamental aspects of English grammar, such as parts of a word, parts of a sentence, and parts of speech


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