Search This Blog

Monday, 18 January 2016

Citation Management: Tools & Alternatives


Citation Management: Tools & Alternatives: Getting Started with a Reference Manager

What are my options for managing references? How do I choose?

There are many tools available to assist you with managing the
references that you collect in the course of your research. Features may

  • formatting citations and reference lists according to different styles
  • allowing you to add your own annotations, tags, links.
  • integration with word processing applications
  • managing references for different projects in folders 
  • accounts or groups that allow you to collaborate with other researchers
  • uploading files and associating them with references in your database
  • exporting references for use in other tools
This guide is meant to assist in selecting a tool that serves your needs, and to offer links to help resources.

Reference Management Tools Comparison | UBC

UBC Library made this useful diagram:

UBC Reference Comparisons

Contact Us!

  contact info

email appointments

Call us
Powell River:

Research assistance
 in person
Nanaimo: M - F
 9am - 4pm
...also available at Cowichan & Powell River campus libraries

Follow VIULibrary on Twitter

Library Contacts


Librarian Picks

There are lots of citation management tools available. Which ones do VIU librarians use for themselves?

Kathleen Reed, Assessment & Data Librarian: Mendeley

I like Mendeley because I can use it across multiple devices
(desktop, MacBook, iPhone) and it syncs quickly and easily, so I've
always got the most recent version of my references.  It's easy to use -
drag a PDF in and it will go out and get the citation data for it
automatically, in most cases.  There's the ability to read, highlight,
and annotate PDFs within the Mendeley desktop which is nice for keeping
notes and citations together.  I also like Mendeley for its social
features: metrics around how many people have saved particular
resources, the ability to follow particular researchers for updates on
new work, and the option to join interest groups to which people are
always uploading new references.  The program works well on a Mac, is
free, and has MS Word integration for easily inserting citations and
bibliographies into papers.  Mendeley is part citation manager,
note-taker, publication notifier, and publication impact resource.  I
switched from RefWorks and wouldn't go back.  The downside to Mendeley
is that a big corporation is getting access to my personal data, but
that's a price I'm willing to pay for the service.

Dana McFarland, eResources Librarian: Various

I've used many different reference management tools for different
purposes. They are all a big improvement on manual entry, imho.

If the requirement is simple and fleeting, I might just use
LibrarySearch or Google Scholar to format the citation, and then copy
and paste it, or use the Microsoft Word References tool. If I'm working
on a longer term project, I might collect and organize my references in
RefWorks. For collaborative projects, I have used Mendeley because it
facilitates sharing with colleagues in an easy way, but I have found the
limitations on the Mendeley free account constraining. I'm looking
forward to trying Flow to manage references for projects and
collaborations. Once set up, it seems to have an intuitive and fairly
accurate import tool. Because I like to change it up, it's important to
me that whatever tool I use is web-accessible and open, or at least
interoperable, so that I can import and export references selectively or
in bulk without a lot of hassle.

Getting Started with a Reference Manager - Citation Management: Tools & Alternatives - Library Guides @ VIU at Vancouver Island University Library

No comments:

Post a comment