A Quick Guide to Turabian Citation Style

This citation style was introduced by Kate L. Turabian. The format is used in huge academic works which imply a lot of papers. It’s based on two main principles. The first one is an author-date style. The second one is a notes-bibliography format, which is also called a bibliographic format. As for the author-date style, it’s also called a reference list style. However, all these scary words mean a well-known type of formatting which you can find in the Chicago Manual Style. Turabian style was developed to improve such an approach and make it easier to use.

Key Features

You may have seen the bibliography format studying different works on history, arts or literature. Like Chicago, this type is related to various notes formats. As for the author-date style, it’s somewhat more common, and it’s mostly used by writers who work in such fields as social sciences and natural sciences, as well as physical sciences. In general, this approach requires you to just write the author’s name and date. The latter is written in parentheses. All sources used for quotes are listed as references.

These two types of Turabian format differ only by related information and notes. Generally, they are quite similar and imply the same requirements. We decided to help you with formatting electronically published books, and articles. These rules can also be applied for online journals.


If you check the Turabian manual, it says that, quoting a book which was published in different versions, your citation should reflect the version used in your work. Therefore, if you’re using the electronic version, you need to add the URL. It also would be good to add the name of the database where you found that book. Your citation will look like this: Author’s Name, Title of the Book (City: Publisher, Year), pages, Database.

Online Article

Articles should also meet certain requirements of Turabian style. You need to specify the online journal, URL or DOI. As with a previous example, you have to write a date and database where you found this article.

Author’s Name. “Title of the Article.” Journal Number (Date): Pages. Access date. URL


Talking about Turabian style, it’s almost impossible to not mention Chicago. These formats have a lot in common; maybe, even more than you expect. It’s easy to find such similarities by yourself, but we also decided to draw your attention to some particular features:

  • Any notes should be written on the same page as references and other additional data.
  • Don’t forget about page numbers. You have to write them on every page, except the cover page.
  • Use one-inch limitations; don’t use the other side of the paper.
  • In case your tutor doesn’t suggest single spacing, always use double spacing in your paper. Single spacing should be applied to notes and bibliography section.
  • Don’t forget to indent first sentence of each paragraph by pressing a Tab key.
  • Using paraphrasing or quotes, we suggest you to include footnotes.
A Quick Guide to Turabian Citation Style
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