STL Quick Bluebook Guide

The purpose of this guide is to help students write and organize their citations while writing academic papers and essays, including their graduate thesis. The citations in this guide follow the standard for U.S.-style academic legal writing.

The citation rules referenced here are the citation rules followed by The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation, published by the law reviews of several U.S. law school journals, and the Guide to Legal Citation, written by the Association of Legal Writing Directors. You are expected to follow these rules for the following:

  • Citations in the English version of your thesis, including citations to Chinese sources; and
  • Citations to U.S. sources in the Chinese version of your thesis.

Copies of the Bluebook and the Guide to Legal Citation can be found in the STL Law Library. In addition, an online citation manual, the Indigo Book, is freely available at

The part of the Bluebook on citations to sources from the PRC is freely available at

For citations in Chinese papers and for the Chinese version of your thesis, consult the 法学引注手册 published by the Peking University Press. Follow the citation rules here for citations to U.S. sources even in the Chinese version of a thesis.

This guide is not meant to be used for memo writing. Citations for memos and/or briefs follow slightly different rules.