Modern Humanities Research Association (MHRA)

 Whenever you refer to another’s words or ideas in your work, insert a superscript footnote number in your text at the end of the sentence after the full stop, like this.Alternatively, you may be asked to give a number with round brackets (1). Some lecturers prefer the former style, whilst others prefer the latter - always remember to check before beginning your work. Whichever method you use, always be consistent.

When referring to the publication for the first time you should give full details in the footnote or endnote. Subsequent entries to the same source should be abbreviated to the shortest possible form. This will usually be the author’s name, followed by the page number. If there is any ambiguity (for example, two authors with the same surname or multiple texts by the same author) then give the name, a shortened version of the text’s title, and the page number.  

As well as footnotes or endnotes, you should list all your sources, including those you have read but not cited in a bibliography at the end of you work. 

Useful websites

  • MHRA handbook online: The official website of this style. Download your own copy of the official guide for detailed instructions on how to cite correctly and create a full biography and reference list. (Note that this is the complete style guide. The chapters relevant to referencing are 9, 10 and 11).
  • Cite them right online: University of Birmingham staff and students have access to this excellent online publisher resource from Macmillan International on referencing, with extensive examples including MHRA.  Use the Login link (top right) if required and then enter ‘University of Birmingham’.  Search 'MHRA' in Cite them right online for a page outlining the style, including sample text, footnotes and bibliography.

If you require any further help with referencing, the Academic Skills Centre can assist you.

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