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Endnotes vs Footnotes Referencing: Key Difference

Endnotes vs Footnotes Referencing: Key Difference

You must understand the difference between footnotes and endnotes if you are writing a school paper using Chicago style citations utilising the notes-Biblio style or if your teacher requests you to incorporate notes in your work. Notes are typically included in Chicago 17 notes-biblio style, but if your instructor needs them, you may use them in an MLA or APA citation style school assignment.

Footnotes are found at the bottom of each page. Endnotes are listed after the reference list or bibliography at the end of the text. Don’t combine footnotes and endnotes; instead, pick one and stick to it. 

You can use either footnotes or endnotes in Chicago notes and bibliography style, and citations follow the same format in both cases. 

Footnotes and endnotes are not used for citations in APA and MLA style, but they can be used to convey supplementary information.

Difference Between Endnotes and Footnotes.png

Which Format To Be Used?

When determining which format to employ, keep the following aspects in mind: 


  • Because the author and other info may already be contained in the text, footnotes are shorter. 
  • Your paper's formatting may be affected by footnotes.
  • Extensive footnotes take the reader's attention away from the text. 


  • Endnotes can be bothersome if the reader has to flip to the back of the book every time. 
  • When the notes are placed towards the end of the paper, it is simpler to read the pages.
  • Endnotes should be placed after the bibliography but before the finish of your research paper.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Footnotes vs Endnotes 

Advantages of employing endnotes:

  • Endnotes are less distracting to the reader and aid in the flow of the storey. 
  • It takes up very little room on the page. 
  • Endnotes are a section of a research paper that allows readers to read and think about all of the notes at once.

Disadvantages of employing endnotes: 

  • You'll have to move to the end of the study report to find the text of a specific endnote if you wish to read it. 
  • Endnotes, like the conventional "fine print" or hidden disclaimers in advertisements, might be perceived as unfavourable. A reader might believe you're trying to hide something by burying something in a hard-to-find endnote. 
  • Based on how they will be made, which is a continual number or numbers that start again for each chapter. You may need to memorise the chapter number as well as the endnote number to find the correct one.

Advantages of employing footnotes:

  • Readers who want to identify the resource can swiftly scan the paper to locate it. 
  • When printing specific pages, footnotes are automatically added.
  • It enables the reader to directly connect the footnote to the topic of the text without searching for it at the back of the book. 

Disadvantages of using endnotes:

  • Footnotes can clog up a paper and have a detrimental influence on its overall appearance. 
  • If the footnotes are long, they may take up too much space on the page, albeit this is a problem that is acceptable in legal studies.
  • You must select where the footnotes should appear if there are numerous charts, graphs, or tables and only a small portion of text that includes a footnote.

Tips For Using Endnotes or Footnotes 

  • With an exception for those notes incorporating special information, all footnotes in a research article are numbered consecutively, for example, tables, figures, charts, etc. Footnotes are numbered in a "superscript" style, with Arabic numbers typed firmly above the line of text. Parentheses, periods, and slashes are not allowed. Except for dashes, all punctuation marks can be followed. The footnote numbers are usually put at the end of the sentence’s end, clause, or phrase, holding the cited or rephrased. Information to avoid disrupting the text's flow. 
  • Endnotes may replace a list of cited sources in your paper and even reflect non-bibliographic items like remarks or findings, accompanied by a completely different list of references to the source materials you cited, arranged in alphabetical order by the last name of the author, based on the writing style employed in your class. Contact your professor if you have any questions regarding how to utilise endnotes. 
  • In general, footnotes are now considered a bit archaic in most academic writing and have been superseded with endnotes, which are considerably easier to insert into your work, especially with the rise of word processing systems. Nonetheless, other fields, like history and law, continue to rely heavily on footnotes. Ask your professor about the format to use, and ensure to utilise it continuously across your paper, no matter which style you choose.

Endnotes vs Footnotes Examples

To include citations inside the text of a document, the Chicago style prefers footnotes or endnotes over in-text citations. Endnotes and footnotes do not replace the final bibliography page; rather, they increase a document's trustworthiness by supplying readers with precise source information. In Chicago style, footnotes typically include the author's name, the title of the work, the publisher information with the first citation, date of publication, and the page number.

Which is Better Endnotes Or Footnotes.png

The examples below explain how to make footnotes for material that appears in the body of your work (without or with the author named in a signal phrase).

Bibliography full citation: 

Book: Last Name, Firstname. Title. City of publication: Publisher, Year of publication.

Online journal: Last Name, Firstname. “Article Title.” Journal Title Volume number, Issue number (Year of publication): Page range. Database Name or DOI or URL.

When considering the use of force, keep in mind that "hockey faiths and antique weapons are no match for a decent blaster by your side.” 1


Solo's scepticism against blind faith and outmoded weapons was shown in his belief that having sophisticated firepower is the best way to resolve conflict 2. 


  • Firstname Lastname of the author, “Article Title,” Journal Title number of volume, Issue number (Year of publication): Page number, Database Name or DOI or URL.
  • Firstname Lastname of the author, Title (City of publication: Publisher, Year of publication), Page number.


  • Last Name, Title, Page Number.

When utilising endnotes, a superscript number is placed after the quoted or paraphrased sentence or summary content. 


  • First name and last name of the author, Title of Book (City of publication: Publishing company’s name, Date of Publication), Page Number of quoted, paraphrased, or summarised material.
  • Author of the text, "Document or essay title," in Editor of Collection, ed., Title of book (Place of Pub:  Publisher, Year of Publication), page number.

Common Styles

MLA: Notes can be used in some styles, such as MLA, but they are not widespread. You won't use this strategy very often in your school paper, especially if you're in high school.

APA: Notes are not recommended in the APA style. Follow these standards if you must mention them in MLA or APA: 

  • Content notes are used to provide additional information that does not fit in the text but is useful. 
  • Footnotes with copyright authorization provide information that we need to republish. Copyright authorization footnotes are also useful for excerpts longer than 400 words, especially from published works.

Chicago style: The Chicago and Turabian styles are two of the most prevalent methods for including notes in a document. The notes-bibliography style includes endnotes and a bibliography. The basic format of an endnotes page in Chicago Style is the same as in MLA or APA style; however the title is "Notes."

Citation rules 

  • For Chicago, Kent utilises the "Notes-Bibliography" style of formatting, which necessitates the inclusion of footnotes for in-text citations. 
  • Footnotes are found at the bottom of each page of your work and are numbered from the beginning to the finish; the footnotes on every page should match the references on that page. 
  • In the Notes-Bibliography format, there are two types of notes: footnotes and endnotes.
  • A brief note for future references must include the author's surname, allow for the abbreviation of book or article titles, and include page numbers.
  • When referencing a source for the first time, use a full footnote (notice that the author's first name is listed first in the footnotes, which would be the contrary of what has been completed in the Bibliography). 

Concluding Lines

You may not have been required to submit a Works Cited, References, or Bibliography page if your instructor thinks your Endnotes or footnotes to be sufficient documentation. Alternatively, a separate page labelled Works Cited, References, or Bibliography must be provided at the end of your paper to incorporate all of the citations previously listed on your Endnotes or Notes page.
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