Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
USC logo
Library Guides

Equity and Trusts

LAW302 This course builds on doctrines encountered in contracts, property and corporate and partnership law.

Australian Guide to Legal citation - Quick tips

At USC all law students are required to use The Australian Guide to Legal Citation (AGLC4) published by Melbourne University.

AGLC4 has been revised and reprinted with a summary of changes below.

AGLC4 - summary of changes (6 pages in PDF format)



  • An online copy of AGLC4 (337 pages in PDF) is available freely from the University of Melbourne web site.
  • Please note the AGLC4 Erratum published 29 July 2019 concerning pages 9, 12, 21, 30, 45, 50, 52-53, 60, 79, 93, 120, 124, 139, 159, 201, 239, 257.
  • Download the AGLC4 quick guide (PDF 156KB)
  • printed copy of AGLC3 is still available in the Library at KU48.A87 2012.
  • Short guide to citing the law (La Trobe University)
  • Citing FAQS - Monash University Library Guide
  • AGLC quick reference app - A quick reference app developed by the University of Western Sydney. For use on Ipad, Iphone and Ipod devices from the Apple App store. You need to be running iOS version 4.3 or higher. It is also available for Android devices 4.0 and up from the Google Play store.


Using Footnotes

Footnotes are used to provide extra information that is not appropriate to include in the body of your writing.  They are also used to back up an argument as well as to acknowledge your source. Footnotes provide information that enables the reader to retrieve the relevant source that is referred to in the text.

Sources such as legislation, cases, books, journals, reports, newspapers, interviews, radio, television and information from the Internet must be acknowledged in text and detailed in the footnotes.Superscript numbers should be placed at the end of the portion of text in your writing. The footnotes need to be numbered consecutively.

Using Repeat Citations

When a particular source is cited more than once in the body of writing the full bibliographic details should not be provided each time in the footnote.  The terms "Ibid" and "above n" can be used. Please note that repeat citations of legislation or cases the term "above n" cannot be used.


'Ibid' is an abbreviation of the Latin term 'ibidem', meaning 'in the same place'. 'Ibid' should be used to refer a source in the immediately preceding footnote.  However 'Ibid' should NOT be used where there are multiple sources in the preceding footnote.

The term 'Ibid' must be capitalised at the start of a footnote.  If there is a pinpoint reference, (a reference to a specific place in the cited text) and the next footnote is to the same work and same place use 'Ibid'. 

If you refer to the same source as the preceding footnote but to a different pinpoint reference you must use 'Ibid' followed by the pinpoint reference number.

Above n

Use 'above n' to refer to a source that has been cited in a previous footnote but NOT the immediately preceding one.  However, you  can use 'above n' to refer to an immediately preceding footnote, IF that footnote lists more than one source. 

Do NOT use 'above n' for case citations or legislation.

Footnote Example

  1. Victoria Park Racing and Recreation Grounds Co Ltd ​v Taylor (1937) 58 CLR 479, 480
  2. Joycey Tooher and Bryan Dwyer, Introduction to Property Law (LexisNexis Butterworths, 5th ed, 2008), 27.
  3. Ibid 52-3.
  4. ​Victoria Park Racing and Recreation Grounds Co Ltd v Taylor (1937) 58 CLR 479, 483.
  5. Ibid 480.
  6. Banking Act 1959 (Cth)​
  7. Ibid.
  8. Tooher and Dwyer (n 2) 15.
  9. Ibid 20.
  10. Banking Act (1959) (Cth) 2 5.
  11. ​Encyclopaedic Australian legal Dictionary (online at 10 September 2013) 'comity' (Legal Dictionary).
  12. Ibid 'Jurisdiction'.
  13. Simon Young and Sarah Murray, 'An Elegant Convergence? The Constitutional Entrenchment of Jurisdictional error Review in Australia, (2011) 11(2) Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal 117, 118.
  14. Legal Dictionary,  (n 11) 'plaintiff'.

© University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia | ABN 28 441 859 157 | CRICOS Provider No. 01595D