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Citation & Research Management: Best Practice: Compare

Use a personal content management system to download records, format bibliographies, track citations, enter footnotes or endnotes, add pdfs - to your research.

How to choose: review features

  • Cost: There is no cost to start using RefWorks, Mendeley or Zotero.
  • Working without internet access: You can use the references stored in EndNote, Mendeley or Zotero without being connected to the Internet.
  • Storing PDFs: Refworks, EndNote, Mendeley or Zotero allow you to integrate downloaded PDFs with your reference database. EndNote will search for available full-text when you are on campus or through the Proxy server. This is a quick way to download and organize the full-text of multiple references.
  • Working with a team: If you are joining a team that has already chosen a particular reference management tool, it is a good idea to learn to use that tool. If you are forming a team and all people are from UCB, create a separate RefWorks account for your group or use private group in Mendeley. For teams that cross institutions use Zotero Groups or a Mendeley private group.
  • Systematic Reviews: EndNote and RefWorks allow ingestion of large result files from multiple databases and provide various de-duplication options. Create a separate EndNote library or RefWorks account for a systematic review project.

Remember that you may move your references between programs, if you don't like one program you can always switch.

See the chart for a detailed comparison of EndNote, RefWorks, Mendeley and Zotero features.

Widely used citation managers:

  • Free to UC Berkeley users, create an account using RefWorks New User.
  • Works with Google Docs, use Tools.
  • Web-based: use at any computer with internet access
  • Format bibliographies in Word
  • Import citations from RSS feeds
  • Use UC-eLinks to find the full text of articles from within RefWorks
  • Share lists of references or create a group account for co-editing

EndNote Home

  • Desktop-based software plus EndNote Web
  • Format bibliographies in Word or Open Office
  • Capture citation data from PDFs
  • Annotate PDFs
  • Use UC-eLinks to find the full text of articles from within EndNote
  • Share lists of references with other EndNote users. See our EndNote page for tutorials and additional information.
  • See our EndNote Support page for tutorials and additional information.

  • Free software/web hybrid for PC, Mac, Linux
  • Use your berkeley.edu email address for 100GB storage and other upgrades
  • Format bibliographies in Word or LibreOffice
  • Sync PDFs to your web account for online access
  • Capture citation data from some PDFs
  • Search and annotate PDFs
  • Share and collaboratively edit lists of references with private groups.
  • Elsevier.

Zotero

  • Free (up to 300 MB web storage) browser extension
  • Sync Zotero to access your library from any computer with internet access
  • Format bibliographies in Word and OpenOffice
  • Capture citation data from PDFs and web pages
  • Share and collaboratively edit lists of references
  • Open source software from the Center for History and New Media, George Mason University

The TeX logo

  • a typesetting language used for scientific document preparation.
  • LaTeX is a program that converts a plain text file into TeX.
  • BibTeX is a tool that can be used with LaTeX to create documents and bibliographies. http://www.latex-project.org.
  • Tools are free to download.
  • The TeX Users Group (TUG) includes an FAQ, links to software.
  • EndNote and Mendeley have a BibTeX output style that will format your citations into TeX.

Papers

  • is low-cost software that allows you to search, retrieve, organize, and annotate article PDFs.
  • export references into citation management tools like EndNote to use the citation and bibliography formatting features.

Software for Science Reference Management

  • web-list of many bibliographic management programs for the PC or Mac, some are free.

compare

  EndNote
New features 6000+ bib styles, templates. New: MS Word Addin, Google Docs App.. New: premium upgrade for UCB users. New: Stand alone 5.0
Other Best for personal management & large collections. Good for links to UCB databases & downloads. Not as agile with EBSCO databases Works with Firefox, Safari & Chrome; open source
Storage space (reference & attachment) Unlimited w/ EndNote X8. Unlimited storage. 100GB for UCB Accounts, (2G for others). 300 MB. 700+ papers
(more space available)
Cost UC <$100, or use the Free Trial. Free through UCB UCB users get premium upgrades. Free, more storage w/ subscription.
Web or desktop Both Web Both Web & browser plug-in
How do you use it? Full - Your Computer
Basic - EndNote Web
Internet, iCloud. Full - Your computer
Basic - Mendeley Web
Full - Your computer
Basic - Zotero Web
Strengths Robust; good search & storage; direct export with UCB Library databases; works with PubMed Works well with UCB Library databases; share citations; good for organizing & formatting citations Find other researchers in your field. Receive new papers in your research area. Good at pulling metatdata from web resources, PDFs import automatically.
Word Processing Integrates with MS Word. CWYW; Format Paper with Pages, Nissus, WordPad, others Write-n-Cite plug-in works only with MS Word; One Line/Cite View works with all word processors Cite references in all major citation styles using plug-ins that work with MS Word and Libre Office. Export to BibTex or integrate with Overleaf. Plug-ins that work with MS Word, OpenOffice, LibreOffice
Annotation of PDFs Yes. Allows open PDFs to highlight, add comments, and tags while reading them. RefWorks allows a list of references rather than help you manage PDFs. Yes. Allows open PDFs highlight, add comments, and tags to PDFs while reading them. Use Zotfile to manage PDFs, add comments to stored citations and  attach PDFs to citations.
Use UC eLinks to get full text. Yes yes    
After UC Berkeley You own it Alumni accounts available Alumni get 1 year of premium access then revert to free version or subscribe individually. Free
Sharing options EndNote web. Share folders information Share documents within private groups. Groups use the creator's storage space.
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