People use the Chicago documentation format or Turabian style in research reports in various disciplines. Basically, the style has unique characteristics that give it an edge over other citation styles. In turn, the Chicago style has two citation forms that provide full citations details within the text, but employing notes has an additional advantage of decluttering the text.
Citation Forms in the Chicago Style
Firstly, people use the notes-bibliography style in humanities and some social science disciplines. In particular, the notes-bibliography style is based on the use of either footnotes or endnotes in the Chicago manual of style citation. They contain the relevant bibliographical information for sources used in the text. Basically, the authors place a footnote or endnote immediately after a sentence. This feature symbolizes a superscript number. Also, people locate footnotes on a particular page at the bottom of the same page. They list endnotes at the end of a paper. In this case, notes are accompanied by a “Bibliography,” which is a list at the end of each paper that contains identical information as the corresponding footnote or endnote.
Secondly, people use the author-date style in most social, physical, and natural sciences. Basically, the author-date citation form meets the needs of other disciplines where footnotes and endnotes are considered to be less effective means of citation. Moreover, this citation form presents the author’s surname, publication year, and page number in parentheses. In this case, the parenthetical citations are accompanied by a “Reference List,” which documents bibliographical information for all in-text citations in the Chicago style. Therefore, two citation forms establish some freedom for authors to choose an ideal documentation style for their works.
The Superiority of the Chicago Style
The Modern Language Association (MLA) referencing style and the American Psychological Association (APA) documentation style appear to be inferior documentation systems. In particular, disciplines that use the MLA citation are focused on understanding the influence of one text on the interpretation of an earlier or later work. In this case, the author-page style prioritizes the author’s surname and original page numbers of a piece of information. Moreover, research in disciplines that use the APA citation assigns a high significance in the evolution of a particular research topic. Consequently, the author-date style allocates much meaning to the year of publication rather than the page number. Thus, the superiority of the Chicago style is evident because both citation forms provide the surname of the author, publication year, and page numbers, which makes it applicable in nearly all disciplines.
The use of discursive and content notes declutters the essay’s text. For instance, the notes-bibliography style eliminates the distractive parenthetical citations. It impairs the readability of heavily cited papers. Also, multiple citations for a single statement makes it problematic for a reader to follow an argument. It appears to be segmented by extensive parenthetical citations. In this case, discursive notes create an opportunity for an author to comment on a specific piece of evidence. Unfortunately, there are cases where it may lack a direct contribution to the paper. However, the Chicago style may provide critical contextual information for internalization of the main argument of the paper. Hence, this provision allows the author to develop a tightly neat argument that lacks any slight but necessary detours. In turn, it increases the probability of comprehension. Thus, the Chicago style notes have a significant impact on a manuscript.
Conclusion on the Chicago Style
Detailed documentation is a necessity in academic writing. Basically, the Chicago style or Turabian format demonstrates a certain edge due to the provision of all three bibliographical elements within the text. Moreover, the style allows for concise arguments when notes are used while people cite Chicago.