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Citing a YouTube Video with Chicago Manual of Style

Citing a YouTube Video with Chicago Manual of Style


youtube-citationWith the prevalence of YouTube on the Internet, historians can find clips of just about everything on the website. Useful videos include but are not limited to academic lectures, documentaries, and historical footage.

Here is how you cite YouTube videos using Chicago Manual of Style.

First, it is important to note that for online videos, you must include more information than other URLs. The basic components of a citation include the following:

  • The URL
  • The date of the video or that date you accessed the video
  • If the video is of a recorded performance such as a speech, lecture, or lecture, then you must include information about that as well
  • State clearly that it is a video
  • The length of the video

With that in mind, let us walk through an example. The following video is a good one, featuring a lecture by Jeffrey Brenzel, philosopher and Dean of Undergraduate Admissions at Yale University.

We have already analyzed and celebrated this video on OnlineLearningTips.com. This was easy enough by simply embedding the video. However, in a history paper, we would need to provide more details.

The note citation would look like the following:

1. “Jeffrey Brenzel: The Essential Value of a Classic Education,” YouTube video, 56:42, a special lecture on December 11, 2012, posted by “Big Think,” January 15, 2013, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVLpdzhcU0g.

There is plenty to dissect, but the key thing to recognize is that we included all of the components above including when it was posted and when we watched it. Here is a break down each component.

1. “[Video Title],” [YouTube Video], [Length in HH:MM:SS], [Description of video and date], [posted by “username”], [Date watched], [URL].

It is that simple.

By Scott Manning
Online Learning Tips, Student Contributor