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Citing, referencing and reference management: Reference management

Why use reference management software?

Reference management software (also called bibliographic management or citation management) can save you a great deal of time and effort when you are writing a paper, dissertation or thesis.

It enables you to store the references you collect while searching the literature, and will automatically format the citations in a word processor document, and produce a list of references at the end of that document formatted in the style of your choice (e.g. Harvard, Vancouver).

There are lots of reference management software packages to choose from: some require a subscription and some are free - see below for more information.

Which reference management software should I use?

Queen's University has recently taken out a subscription to EndNote which now replaces RefWorks as the university's standard reference management software for students and staff.

Students and staff of Queen's University can download EndNote and install it on up to three devices

The EndNote installation files and guidance on how to install the software are available here: 

You can find more information about EndNote on the next tab of this guide ("EndNote").

 

What about RefWorks?

The university's subscription to RefWorks runs until December 2020. If you have already signed up to RefWorks, you can continue to use it until the university's subscription ends. However, it is no longer possible to sign up for a new RefWorks account. Please consider using EndNote or one of the alternative products which are available.

You can easily transfer your references from RefWorks to EndNote. Detailed information is available on the RefWorks tab of this guide.

What are the alternatives to EndNote?

If you do not like working with EndNote, there are a number of other tools available. Popular alternatives include free services like Mendeley, Zotero and Qiqqa. You are welcome to use any alternative packages, but Queen's only supports EndNote and RefWorks (until the subscription to RefWorks ends). So, if you experience problems using other reference management software, your subject librarian probably won't be able to advise.

Not sure which reference management software is right for you?

You can find detailed comparisons on a number of websites, including: