How to Do a Footnote Using the Associated Press Style

Updated March 17, 2017

Do not use footnotes to reference information. Associated Press style does not allow for bibliographies or works cited pages, or for citations via footnotes. An information report employing Associated Press style needs to communicate solid information to its readers and information must be clearly referenced within the article.

Use an in-text citation such as, "According to the Mayo Clinic's citation guidelines, writers must ask permission to reprint entire articles from the website." Attribute your information directly to its source in the body of your article.

Do not use footnotes to add anecdotes or extra information to your article. Associated Press style does not include footnotes in this case, either.

Use the same method of citation regardless of your source. Books and journal articles, for example, should both be cited in this method.

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  • Since the Associated Press is mainly concerned with news articles and short reports, sources must be cited in the text in order to lend it newsworthy and credible. Other styles are designed for prose or academic writing and thus often rely heavily on books, journal, newspaper or magazine articles for their information.


  • Check with the person who has given you the assignment; if writing a news article or an informational article, Associated Press style may be required. In this case, use in-text citations. However, if you are writing an academic paper, Associated Press style is generally not used; teachers often ask for MLA style or Chicago Style. Do not confuse AP style -- Associated Press style -- with APA style, which is the American Psychological Association style. The two are very different and ask for very different methods of citing information referenced from another source.

Things Needed

  • AP Style Manual

About the Author

Based in Washington, D.C., Lena Freund began writing professionally in 2007, while living in Tel Aviv. She holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in Middle Eastern studies and Hispanic studies from the College of William & Mary and a Master of Arts in Middle Eastern history from Tel Aviv University. Freund's articles about travel, languages and cultures have been published on various websites.