Footnotes and endnotes are other common referencing styles, both of which provide information on the sources either at the footer of the page (footnotes) or at the end of the essay (endnotes). Follow this simple guide to master the basics.

Practice Using Footnotes/ Endnotes in Microsoft Word

When using footnotes or endnotes, a number is appended at the end of every quote after the full stop, like this.[1] In Microsoft Word, this is as simple as clicking on ‘References’ and selecting either ‘Insert footnote’ or ‘Insert endnote’. When you do this, you will be taken to the bottom of the page or the essay where you can insert the reference. For example,

[1] Peter Bodkins, How to Reference Correctly, (London: Fictitious Publishing, 2012), 123.

Note that the title may either be italicised or underlined, but not both. This information is again repeated in the bibliography without the page number.

For more information on using footnotes and endnotes for a range of sources, see this guide:

Using ibid and op cit

If you repeat the same source twice in a row, instead of repeating it, simply insert a footnote or endnote and type ibid (with a lower-case i). If it’s the same source but with a different page number, type ibid followed by a comma and the page number.

2 ibid, p. 125.

If you are referencing a work which has been previously cited, but wasn’t the last one you cited, insert op cit, again in lower-case, followed by the author’s name and page number (and year if you are using more than one of their works).

3 op cit Bodkins, pp. 124-125.

Again also note that when more than one page is cited, the ‘p’. becomes ‘pp.’ to show this.

Also note that you don’t have to use the latin terminology if you don’t want to. You might instead simply repeat the author’s name (and page number if necessary) instead of using ibid or op cit – just be consistent.

Tucking in Additional Information

One perceived benefit of the footnotes and endnotes system is that you can tuck in additional information into your essay without adding to the word count by simply inserting a footnote or endnote and expanding on the point you’re making in the body of the essay. Don’t do this too much because it will seem like you’ve not structured your essay properly, however they are handy if you’ve forgotten to include important information or want to include an aside which may not belong within the main text.

Most endnotes or footnotes can be copied and pasted directly into your bibliography, removing specific page numbers as appropriate. Again, your bibliography is listed in alphabetical order. Some guides suggest changing the formatting of the surname so that it is followed by the initial (unlike earlier where the surname is followed by the first initial) but it’s unlikely you will be penalised either way so long as you adopt the same formatting throughout.

And Don’t Forget the Bibliography

Even though you have provided extensive information in the footnotes, this information is still required in the bibliography which you must always include unless otherwise instructed. This can be copied and pasted from the footnotes but don’t forget to remove the page numbers (for books but not for journal arti