Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Using Multiple References to the Same Footnote.

Using Multiple References to the Same Footnote

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 26, 2016)

Word includes a feature that allows you to add footnotes and endnotes to your documents. This can come in real handy for some type of scholarly or scientific documents. In some instances, however, you may have a need for a single footnote to have multiple references within a document. For example, some scientific journals require that footnotes not be repeated, but that the same footnote reference be repeated within the main text, and that the references go to a single footnote. Thus, the document may have many occurrences of the same footnote reference.

Normally, Word allows only a one-to-one relationship between footnote references and footnotes. If you have a need for multiple references to the same footnote, this doesn't help you. Instead, you should follow these steps:

  1. Insert your first (primary) footnote as normal.
  2. Position the insertion point in the document where you want the secondary reference to the footnote.
  3. Choose Cross-reference from the Insert menu. Word displays the Cross-reference dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Cross-reference dialog box.

  5. Using the Reference Type drop-down list, choose Footnote. Word displays a list of footnotes in the dialog box.
  6. Select the footnote you want used for this reference.
  7. Click Insert. The cross-reference is inserted, but it is still not formatted as a footnote reference.
  8. Click on Close to dismiss the Cross-reference dialog box. The insertion point should be just to the right of the cross-reference you just inserted.
  9. Hold down the Shift key as you press the Left Arrow. The cross-reference should be selected.
  10. Press Shift+F9. The contents of the field used for the cross-reference are displayed. It should look similar to the following.
  11. { NOTEREF _Ref477318004 \h }
    
  12. Position the insertion point between the last space and the closing brace in the field.
  13. Type \f. This field switch causes the field to use the same formatting as your other footnote references. The field should now appear similar to the following:
  14. { NOTEREF _Ref477318004 \h \f}
    
  15. Press Shift+F9 to collapse the field.
  16. Press F9 to update the field.

One other thing you might want to keep in mind: If you add new footnotes after following the above steps, the footnote references are automatically updated, but the cross-reference fields are not. To update those you'll need to update the cross-reference fields. The easiest way to do this is to press Ctrl+A (which selects the entire document) and then press F9 (which updates all the fields in the document).

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (70) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Using Multiple References to the Same Footnote.

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. ...

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