Citing A Doctoral Thesis In The Chicago Style: Useful Tips

The Chicago style has been edited up to the 16th edition with few amendments being made. It has two citation techniques. Choosing the two techniques depends on the sourcess used and the main subject.

Notes and bibliography

Notes and bibliography style is also termed as Chicago A. It makes use of either endnotes or footnotes or both followed by a bibliography. This format is mostly used by historians and humanitarians as it is very flexible. The footnote or endnote contains:

  • The author's name. The first name, followed by an abbreviation of the others. Example, Craig L. or Joanne R.
  • Title. It should be capitalised. Title of books and journals should be also be italicised. For chapters, articles or unpublished thesis, the title should be in roman and under quotation marks.
  • publication.

The above elements follow each other consecutively and are separated by a comma. Note: footnote numbers are written at the end of a sentence or clause to which it refers to. The numbers should also be after the last punctuation mark of a sentence or a clause. They should be whole numbers and followed by a period.

Ibid is an abbreviation that is used in place of the author(s) names and the title. It's written before the note numbers. Example, Ibid., 2:15-17. The general format of Chicago A is: author's first and second names, title of thesis, (PhD dissertation, name of University and year), page number. Example; Gary Zeller, " If I ain't one, you wount find another one here" (PhD. diss., University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, 2003).


Author/Date(AD) is also termed as Chicago B. It use references such as parathetical or in-text. The reference used contains the author's last name, date of publication and concludes with a bibliographical detail. This format is mostly used in the science field. Text citation does not include punctuation in between the author's name and date of publication. However, the page number comes after a comma. Title should be capitalised. For books and journals, the title is italicised while for articles and other small pieces of work, they are enclosed.

Format for an unpublished and published dissertation

Last name, first name. Year. "Thesis title" Thesis type, University. Example: Choi, Mihwa. 2008. "Thesis title." PhD diss., University of Chicago.

In conclusion, use of abbreviations, quotations and capitalization are also used when writing your doctorate dissertation paper.

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