iLearn Workshops @ UAlbany Libraries
Workshops at the Dewey Graduate Library
Choosing a Citation Tool
If you are looking for help citing sources, creating bibliographies, and organizing your research, there are many tools to choose from. Citation tools fall into three basic categories: style guides, citation management software and citation generators.
Style guides detail the guidelines and requirements of formatting documents and citing sources in a particular style, and provide examples. These include official style manuals from the organization which developed the style, such as the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association for APA style. Many academic libraries provide condensed versions for popular styles, usually focused on citing sources. For example, the University at Albany’s CitationFox is intended to help with the construction of citations in APA style. CitationFox contains templates and examples for citing different resource types. There is also a Citation Fox-MLA version.
Citation management software programs allow you to create and organize a personal library of references and articles, format citations for a bibliography in various citation styles, and sometimes share and collaborate with others. Zotero, Mendeley, EndNote, and EndNote Web are all examples of citation management software, and are mostly used by researchers. For help deciding which citation management software best suits your needs, see this comparison from UW-Madison Libraries and this comparison from Penn State University Libraries. Zotero and Mendeley are both free, and the University at Albany provides access to EndNote and EndNote Web.
Citation generators are websites or mobile apps that automatically format citations and bibliographies. Users select a type of source to be cited, such as a book, enter the book title, and the citation generator retrieves the required data and creates the citation data. Citation generators are useful for undergraduates who need to create bibliographies when writing papers. Many are free and others are inexpensive. See our list of recommended citation generators, and common errors to avoid.
Plagiarism and Citing Sources
Confused about when and why to cite sources? See the guide and tutorial below.