While formatting papers may not sound exciting, formats serve to help writers have a pleasant experience. Turabian formatting has become less popular than Modern Language Association (MLA) and American Psychological Association (APA), but it also holds some unique benefits.
Turabian is applicable to the social sciences, including social studies, psychology, sociology, global studies, religious studies, and art. MLA is usually the first format that students learn in grade school and is promoted in English classes in university. APA is concerned mostly with the areas of education, math, and science. While APA covers multiple fields, Turabian’s net is spread out even farther than APA’s.
APA format requires the date to appear in a prominent place because it is used for areas like medical practice which would be hindered by outdated sources. Turabian includes disciplines like history which prefer that researchers use sources from antiquity.
Footnotes eliminate the need for in-text citations. Instead of having the author’s last name, page number, or year in parentheses at the end of the sentence, you only need a superscript number, which is easy to do on Microsoft Word. Instead of flipping to the back of the paper to view references, you can see the sources on the same page.
Even though you have to deal with footnotes as well as bibliographies, you are just using the same information in a different order, and you are separating the pieces of information with commas rather than periods. Since most students learn how to cite according to MLA, Turabian is not that far a leap to make.