How to cite a journal article in Chicago style

Note: This article mainly covers notes and bibliography style. For author-date style, click here.

To cite an online journal article in Chicago notes and bibliography style, list the author’s name, the title of the article, the journal name, volume, issue, and publication date, the page range on which the article appears, and a DOI or URL.

For an article accessed in print, follow the same format and simply omit the DOI or URL.

Chicago journal article citation
Bibliography Author last name, First name. “Article Title.” Journal Name Volume, no. Issue (Month or Season Year): Page range. DOI or URL.

Pickard, Hanna. “What Is Personality Disorder?” Philosophy, Psychiatry, & Psychology 18, no. 3 (September 2011): 181–84. https://doi.org/10.1353/ppp.2011.0040.

Full note Author first name Last name, “Article Title,” Journal Name Volume, no. Issue (Month or Season Year): Page number(s). DOI or URL.

1. Hanna Pickard, “What Is Personality Disorder?” Philosophy, Psychiatry, & Psychology 18, no. 3 (September 2011): 182. https://doi.org/10.1353/ppp.2011.0040.

Short note Author last name, “Shortened Title,” Page number(s).

2. Pickard, “What Is Personality Disorder?” 182.

Citing an article from a database

Online articles, including those accessed through databases (e.g. Project MUSE or JSTOR), should generally be cited with a DOI, a link designed to permanently and reliably link to the article. In this case, there’s no need to include the database name.

If no DOI is available, you may include a stable URL or permalink. However, don’t use the URL from your browser’s address bar, as this is usually specific to your login session.

If no DOI or stable URL is available, list the name of the database at the end of your citation instead.

Bibliography Author last name, First name. “Article Title.” Journal Name Volume, no. Issue (Month or Season Year): Page range. Database Name.

Goldstone, Jack A. “Climate Lessons from History.” Historically Speaking 14, no. 5 (November 2013): 35–37. Project MUSE.

Full note Author first name Last name, “Article Title,” Journal Name Volume, no. Issue (Month or Season Year): Page number(s). Database Name.

1. Jack A. Goldstone, “Climate Lessons from History,” Historically Speaking 14, no. 5 (November 2013): 35. Project MUSE.

Short note Author last name, “Shortened Title,” Page number(s).

2. Goldstone, “Climate Lessons,” 35.

Journal articles with multiple authors

Journal articles often have multiple authors. Author names should be listed in the order they appear at the head of the article (not in alphabetical order).

In your notes, list up to three authors in full. When there are four or more authors, list only the first, followed by “et al.” (Latin for “and others”).

Multiple authors in Chicago notes
Number of authors Full note example Short note example
2 authors John Smith and Paul J. Jones Smith and Jones
3 authors John Smith, Paul J. Jones, and Sheila McDonnell Smith, Jones, and McDonnell
4+ authors John Smith et al. Smith et al.

In your bibliography, list up to 10 authors in full.

Multiple authors in a Chicago bibliography entry
Arieff, Zainunisha, Mandeep Kaur, Hajirah Gameeldien, Lize van der Merwe, and Vladimir B. Bajic. “5-HTTLPR Polymorphism: Analysis in South African Autistic Individuals.” Human Biology 82, no. 3 (2010): 291–300. https://www.muse.jhu.edu/article/389562.

If there are 11 or more authors, list the first seven in the bibliography, followed by “et al.”

What can proofreading do for your paper?

Scribbr editors not only correct grammar and spelling mistakes, but also strengthen your writing by making sure your paper is free of vague language, redundant words and awkward phrasing.

See editing example

Citing journal articles in Chicago author-date style

In Chicago author-date style, an in-text citation consists of the author’s last name, the year of publication, and a page number.

Each in-text citation must correspond to an entry in your reference list. This is almost identical to a bibliography entry, except the year comes after the author’s name, and only the month appears in brackets.

Author-date journal citation examples

Format Author last name, First name. Year. “Article Title.” Journal Name Volume, no. Issue (Month or Season): Page range. DOI or URL.
Reference list Pickard, Hanna. 2011. “What Is Personality Disorder?” Philosophy, Psychiatry, & Psychology 18, no. 3 (September): 181–84. https://doi.org/10.1353/ppp.2011.0040.
In-text citation (Pickard 2011, 182)
Format Author last name, First name. Year. “Article Title.” Journal Name Volume, no. Issue (Month or Season): Page range. Database Name.
Reference list Goldstone, Jack A. 2013. “Climate Lessons from History.” Historically Speaking 14, no. 5 (November): 35–37. Project MUSE.
In-text citation (Goldstone 2013, 36)
Format Author last name, First name. Year. “Article Title.” Journal Name Volume, no. Issue (Month or Season): Page range.
Reference list Barker, Joseph. 2015. “Against ‘Vital Materialism’: The Passive Creation of Life in Deleuze.” Mosaic 48, no. 4 (December): 49–62.
In-text citation (Barker 2015, 60)

Finding source information for a journal article

The information you need for your citations is usually listed above the article in the database where you found it. The image below shows where to find the relevant information on Project MUSE, for example.

Where to find information for an APA journal citation

With this information, we can construct our bibliography entry.

Mounier-Kuhn, Pierre. “Computer Science in French Universities: Early Entrants and Latecomers.” Information & Culture: A Journal of History 47, no. 4 (2012): 414–56. https://doi.org/10.7560/IC47402.

Frequently asked questions about Chicago style citations

How do I find the DOI of an article?

The DOI is usually clearly visible when you open a journal article on an academic database. It is often listed near the publication date, and includes “doi.org” or “DOI:”. If the database has a “cite this article” button, this should also produce a citation with the DOI included.

If you can’t find the DOI, you can search on Crossref using information like the author, the article title, and the journal name.

Should I use short notes or full notes for my Chicago citations?

In Chicago notes and bibliography style, the usual standard is to use a full note for the first citation of each source, and short notes for any subsequent citations of the same source.

However, your institution’s guidelines may differ from the standard rule. In some fields, you’re required to use a full note every time, whereas in some other fields you can use short notes every time, as long as all sources are listed in your bibliography. If you’re not sure, check with your instructor.

When should I include page numbers in Chicago style citations?

Page numbers should be included in your Chicago in-text citations when:

  • You’re quoting from the text.
  • You’re paraphrasing a particular passage.
  • You’re referring to information from a specific section.

When you’re referring to the overall argument or general content of a source, it’s unnecessary to include page numbers.

When should I use “et al.” in Chicago style citations?

When a source has four or more authors, your in-text citation or footnote should give only the first author’s name followed by “et al.” (Latin for “and others”). This makes your citations more concise.

In your bibliography or reference list, when a source has more than 10 authors, list the first seven followed by “et al.” Otherwise, list every author.

Is this article helpful?
Jack Caulfield

Jack is a Brit based in Amsterdam, with an MA in comparative literature. He writes and edits for Scribbr, and reads a lot of books in his spare time.

1 comment

Jack Caulfield
Jack Caulfield (Scribbr Team)
May 3, 2021 at 1:36 PM

Thanks for reading! Hope you found this article helpful. If anything is still unclear, or if you didn’t find what you were looking for here, leave a comment and we’ll see if we can help.

Still have questions?

Please click the checkbox on the left to verify that you are a not a bot.