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Reference management software

Choosing the Right Reference Management Software

Reference management software can be used to help store, manage and cite with your references. There are quite a few different products out there, some of which are very complex. The Librarys recommend using Zoterobib, which is free and easy to use*.

Using ZoteroBib

With ZoteroBib, all you need to do is copy and paste the source ISBN, DOI, URL etc. into the search box and the reference will be automatically generated for you. Occasionally, ZoteroBib contains more information than required in a reference, so be sure to proof read before adding to your bibliography.

ZoteroBib will store your citations for you, so you can use it to keep track of your sources while you are researching. Once you have all the references you need you can then generate a bibliography which you can export or copy and paste into your essay. However, you still need to remember to put your in-text citations in yourself throughout your work.

Don’t forget you will need to specify which style of Harvard we use when you use ZoteroBib – you do this by changing the style in the blue drop-down bar:

ZoteroBib is a simple version of a much more complex programme called Zotero. Zotero has a huge amount of functionality, and can be used to manage large numbers of references. It also includes a ‘cite while you write’ feature which allows you to insert in-text citations using the programme, and automatically generate a reference list from that. It takes a while to set-up and learn, so we don’t recommend it for undergraduate study. If you are writing a PhD we highly recommend that you use reference management software – so do get in touch and ask us about using Zotero.

*ZoteroBib doesn’t always work in IE/Edge, so we recommend using Firefox or Chrome when using ZoteroBib or Zotero.

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