Managing References

As you search for literature in your field it is a good idea to keep track of relevant articles by importing them into citation management software. By doing so you are creating your own searchable database.

There are several tools that can help you keep track of your references, share them with collaborators and help you cite the evidence as you write your research papers. Scroll down to learn more about specific tools.

Citation management tools

 EndNote is a popular citation management tool.  Zotero is also an open source, therefore free, citation management software that is gaining in popularity.

Use these tools to:

  • keep track of bibliographic information about research materials (articles, books, tables, images etc.);
  • link to full text.
  • create bibliographies and cite your sources (Cite While You Write or CWYW)**;
  • manage resources for different research projects;
  • share references with other researchers.

**As with the desktop versions of citation management tools such as EndNote and Zotero, the Cite-While-You-Write features of online citation management tools will only work if you have Microsoft Office installed on your hard drive (at home or at JGH) i.e. not on the Citrix Network. Citrix does not allow these programs to communicate with Office. To have Office installed on your JGH hard drive  contact CSIT. There is a charge for each individual license. You can also consider an open source version like  Open Office (free).

Using EndNote

 Citation Guide - Endnote - McGill University
 EndNote Guide (short videos on all topics) - University of Hawaii at Manoa Library

 Endnote basics - Health Sciences Library workshop
How to share a library (work collaboratively) *Please note that all users must press the "sync" button to see the changes


 Support section of Zotero

 Introduction to Zotero Guide - Oregon State University Libraries
 Zotero Basics - Health Sciences Library workshop


You must install the programs on your individual desktop or laptop, unless you are using the online version (see below). Instruction in how to use these tools is available either one-on-one or in groups. Please contact Jacynthe Touchette, Instruction Librarian, x22453.

EndNote can be downloaded for free  here

by current McGill faculty and students.

Online tools

 EndNote Web

Accessible from anywhere you have Internet access. Search Pubmed using EndNote Web and import references directly. For McGill users: citations include the button that links you to the full text article subscribed to by McGill (works only if you are signed in to McGIll VPN). Share your citations with other users. Once you download a plugin you can cite-as-you-write. Completely compatible with regular EndNote.


An online research management, writing and collaboration tool ($100 USD per year, free 30 day trial). Import references the same way you do with Reference Manager and EndNote. Manage your references and cite-as-you-write on the go. For more information on RefWorks, see  McGill's RefWorks information page.

 Zotero for Firefox ( also, sync online)

Zotero can be downloaded on your hard drive or be added as a plugin to your Firefox browser only. The local version must be combined to a plugin for Firefox, Chrome or Safari. Also, it is possible to sync your collections online for back up purpose and to access it from any browser anywhere.

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