There are many free citation/document management systems available. The library provides support in the use of some of these tools, but feel free to try any others on your own.
Have questions? Want to learn more? Book an appointment via firstname.lastname@example.org
We support :
- EndNote (free version)
- All the full citation/reference management tools provide the same basic functions such as:
- ability to collect, save, organize your references and pdf documents
- ability to search your own collection and add notes
- ability to create bibliographies in different citation styles such as APA, MLA...
- ability to work with Word so you can write, include citations, and produce your final bibliography
- ability to share/collaborate
- However, each works a bit differently and each has other features the other tools may not have
- The "best" tool is the one that meets your own individual needs best, the one you find easiest to work with: no single tool is the best for everyone. This feature comparison chart prepared by University of Toronto Libraries compares Mendeley, Zotero, and EndNote amongst others and may be helpful in deciding which one might best serve your needs.
- You can also contact us at email@example.com if you have questions or would like a demonstration of any of the above.
- Mendeley: set up a free Mendeley account online.
NOTE: Carleton does not have an institutional account for Mendeley, just ignore the "sign in via your institution" button when setting up your account.
- Mendeley Desktop : This is the older version of Mendeley
- Mendeley Reference Manager: newer version, has an added notebook feature that allows you to gather highlighted text from multiple pdfs in one page + add your own notes. The notebook is synced automatically to the cloud along with your Mendeley library.
NOTE: there do seem to be some issues exporting items from your Mendeley library as an .ris file with this version.
- This thread comparing the 2 may be of interest
FAQ on Syncing of pdf files with Mendeley Reference Manager
Q: If Mendeley syncs the pdfs I add up to the cloud, does that mean I could delete my locally stored copies of these pdfs?
A: Yes, as long as you are working online, you can access your pdfs from within Mendeley, so local copies could be deleted.
Q: Is there any way to have pdfs in Mendeley NOT sync up to the cloud automatically?
A: No. If you have added pdfs in Mendeley the WILL be synced up to the cloud. The only way to not have the pdfs sync up to the cloud is to only have the reference info in Mendelry and NOT attach the pdf file itself.
Q: When I first used Mendeley Reference Manager I checked off the option to be able to work offline. What does this mean?
A: When you choose the offline option it means that Mendeley will download a copy of any pdfs and store them locally, even if you had previously deleted them from your local drive. This means that you will still be able to access them should you not have Internet access. These offline copies are stored in the following location on your computer:
Windows users: C:\Users\pcusername\AppData\Roaming\Mendeley Reference Manager\userfiles
Mac users: /Users/<username>/Library/Application Support/Mendeley Reference Manager/userfiles
- Zotero : download for Mac, Windows, Linux
- Zotero online account: optionally, you can also register for an online account which will allow you to sync your references library so you can access them from any computer
- MacOdrum Library Zotero Guide:
Document:zotero guide.pdf (720.54 KB)
- Mobile options: An official iOS app is in beta testing [as of summer 2021] but there are several third-party solutions listed here.
To use Zotero's Library Lookup that will allow you to find full-text documents licensed by Carleton University:
- In Zotero menu: click on Zotero --> Preferences --> Advanced tab
- In the Resolver line add: https://ocul-crl.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/discovery/openurl?institution=01OCUL_CRL&vid=01OCUL_CRL:CRL_DEFAULT&
A non-exhaustive list of other tools that may be used for quick bibliographies, managing references and/or managing documents.
- Zoterobib: free and no ads, from the makers of Zotero. Easy to use tool to generate on-the-fly bibliographies
Here's a quick video to show how it worksImage:
- BibMe: free, but you have to set up an account
- Citavi: not free; web and desktop versions
- Easy Bib: free version is only for MLA style. For APA, Chicago... you can get 3 day free trial, or pay for the full version.
- More complete list of available tools
- Omni: When you get search results in Omni, look for the quotation mark icon (in list view or full view) to get formatted citations in the most commonly used styles:
- Many of our databases also have a built in quick citation ability, just look for citing links from search results page.
We've received a few questions recently about how accessible citation managere are with tools such as screen readers and keyboard shortcuts. Here are some links you can use to find out more about accessibility features of each tool:
- EndNote: Says they are compliant with ADA, Section 508 (American with Disabilities Act). For details: ADA Compliance
- Zotero: No formal documentation. However, Zotero forums have discussed accessibility features, for example keyboard shortcuts. You can search the forum for "accessibility" or a particular accessibility tools, e.g. JAWS. Zotero has an active user and developer community, and developers do monitor the forums.
- Mendeley: Accessibility. Includes links to dedicated support channels for accessibility issues
- Microsoft Word - Using the References toolbar. While not a citation management tool like those above, Word does allow you to manually insert citation information that can then be inserted in your chosen citation style. Word itself is accessible with screen readers, see this page on how to insert and edit footnotes or endnotes in Word with a screen reader