Multiple References to an Endnote

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated December 12, 2020)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


2

Richard sometimes writes academic documents that include references in endnotes. There are times he wishes to refer to a particular reference several times, for example in the introduction to the paper and then in the discussion. Richard wonders if he can refer to a single endnote multiple times in a document. More importantly, he wonders if he can do so in a way that if the endnotes are renumbered, the endnote reference numbers in the text will still be correct.

Yes, there is a way to do this. Before explaining how to do it, however, you may want to check to see if doing so is consistent with whatever style guide you are following. For instance, if you follow The Chicago Manual of Style, you should not have multiple references to a single endnote (or footnote). Instead, you create a full citation at your first note location and then, in the subsequent location, you insert a second note that is a shortened citation to the same source material. Most other popular style guides suggest the same (or similar) treatment for citations.

Now to how you can actually create multiple references to an endnote: You do this using cross-references. Assuming you've already created your endnotes, you would follow these steps:

  1. Place the insertion point where you want your second reference.
  2. Display the References tab of the ribbon.
  3. Click the Cross-reference tool in the Captions group. Word displays the Cross-reference dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Cross-reference dialog box.

  5. In the Reference Type drop-down list, choose Endnote.
  6. In the list at the bottom of the Cross-reference dialog box, click once on the endnote you want to reference.
  7. Click Insert. The cross-reference is created.

The cross-reference will use the same endnote number as the endnote you chose in step 5. There is one important thing to realize here—if you insert more endnotes, it may seem to you that your cross-references are not automatically updating. This is because the cross-references are implemented through the use of fields, and fields don't automatically update unless you (1) save and open the document anew, (2) force the fields to update, or (3) make Word think you are going to print the document.

Accomplishing the first method is easy—just close and open the document. The second method is done by selecting your entire document (Ctrl+A) and then pressing F9. The third method is most often accomplished by simply pressing Ctrl+P and then pressing Esc to get back to your document. Regardless of the method you choose to use, your cross-references should all be updated to match the endnotes you want them to reference.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (13809) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Converting Many DOC Files to DOCX

Need to convert a bunch of old DOC files to the newer DOCX format? Word doesn't provide the capability to convert a bunch ...

Discover More

Cannot Set Heading Rows in a Table

Word allows you to specify which rows in a table should be considered headings. What if setting the headings doesn't work ...

Discover More

Signs Your Computer has a Virus

Think your system might be infected with a virus? How would you know if it was? Here are some quick indicators that your ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Jumping to an Endnote

Endnotes are often used in documents to document citations and sources. You can jump from endnote to endnote using the ...

Discover More

Controlling Endnote Placement

Endnotes are often used in technical and scholarly documents. You can control exactly where the endnotes appear in your ...

Discover More

Comments in Endnotes

Able to add comments everywhere, except in endnotes? This seems to be a limitation in Word, but here are some ways to ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is three more than 1?

2023-12-29 02:35:49

Tomek

@Mathew Munro
For me the problem you describe is slightly different. The cross-reference inserted this way is also a hyperlink, but not to the endnote at the end of the document, but to where the original endnote counter was inserted in the text. Also, it does not respond to double-click but you have to use Ctrl+click, which is tricky, as it can select the whole sentence instead. You may need to Ctrl+click several times to succeed. Or change the settings to not require Ctrl+click for activating hyperlinks.
To overcome this, you can go to end notes by pressing Ctrl+End (if all your endnotes are at the end of the document, not end of a section). Then you may be able to return to your reading by pressing Shift+F5 once or more times, depending what you did while searching for a particular endnote. This gets clumsy though.

Another problem I had, was that by default, the cross-reference takes the formatting of the text where you insert it. When I was writing scientific reports, all endnote references were supposed to be inserted as superscript, both in text and in the endnote section at the end. I struggled with it, even writing a macro do do the job, until recently I found that there is an option to insert a reference to the Endnote Number (formatted). I hope this may save someone from the struggle I had.


2023-12-23 08:05:21

Mathew Munro

Thanks for the tip. The only trouble is that double-clicking the footnote or endnote from the references section always takes you back to the first instance of its use in the body text, causing the reader to lose their place.

Some Wikipedia articles use a, b, c, etc for subsequent references to the same source, and they're all hyperlinked back to the relevant place in the document. Is there any way to do that in Word, or even better, have multiple references to the same source labelled #number#letter (like 1a, 1b, 1c, etc), again, with hyperlinks that take you to the reference and then back to the relevant place in the body text?


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Videos
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.