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  • David Glenn Hunt Memorial Library
  • Getting Started with Chicago/Turabian

    What is Chicago/Turabian?

    For students, using “Chicago style” usually means putting notes and bibliographies into the formats laid out in The Chicago Manual of Style or in Kate Turabian’s Manual for Writers. For advanced students and professional writers, it can also mean following Chicago’s rules for capitalizing and punctuation, for setting up tables and writing figure captions or lists, and for managing almost any other aspect of writing almost any kind of document.

    Turabian has been the gold standard for generations of college and graduate students in virtually all academic disciplines. Smaller and easier to use than the Chicago Manual of Style, it focuses on the entire process of writing a paper, guiding the reader through finding and researching a topic, planning, writing, citing sources, and every other step on the way to successful completion of a class paper, thesis, or dissertation.

    The citation styles in both books are nearly identical; small differences reflect the fact that most student papers are not intended for publication.

    (Source: CMOS Shop Talk from The Chicago Manual of Style)

    Turabian is the student version of The Chicago Manual of Style, aimed at high school and college students who are writing papers, theses, and dissertations that are not intended for publication. The Chicago Manual of Style is aimed at professional scholars and publishers. The two books are compatible; both are official Chicago style.

    Turabian is written in Chicago style, but it’s much shorter than CMOS. There are many websites that show examples of citations in Turabian style. 

    For the most part, the citation styles are the same in both books. But Turabian gives paper formatting rules and covers the research and writing process in detail, whereas CMOS omits such advice and focuses on the publication process.

    (Source: CMOS Shop Talk from The Chicago Manual of Style)


    This is a video tutorial created by the Librarians at Lone Star College-North Harris to teach library users how to cite their sources in The Chicago Style of documentation. 

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