Literature Search Strategy Week: Judy Nordberg and Nancy Harger on Citation Management

Hello, we are Judy Nordberg and Nancy Harger, librarians at the Lamar Soutter Library, University of Massachusetts Medical School. So now you have some new ideas of where and how to find good information/data. But how can you manage all of it? Some of you may harken back to the “old days” of writing college essays – hours spent trying to re-locate that resource you quoted and then more hours, often late at night, working with a typewriter and a bottle of White Out finishing footnotes and bibliographies. That was then, citation management tools are now!

Hot Tips: At UMass, we support two of these bibliographic citation management tools – RefWorks and EndNote. These are both commercial products that help manage your work from inception through completion of a manuscript. If you search many of the resources that were discussed in earlier posts this week, there are ways to import the citations you find directly into citation managers. Then, the citations are easily findable and accurate. Some tools like EndNote have the ability to crawl the Internet and automatically import full-text in PDF when available. Even if your manager does not have this capability, chances are you can still store PDF full-text within the citation record so the two remain together. Most managers also allow you to create multiple folders that can organize multiple projects from one account. Searching and sorting are usually available as well. And some have small downloadable Microsoft Word add-ons for easy input and manipulation of citations within your manuscript or report based on the output style wanted or required by a publisher. With a high-end manager like EndNote, there are thousands of styles based on periodicals from many disciplines readily available.

If you work in an academic institution, check with your library as you may have network access to EndNote or RefWorks right at your desktop. If not, there are a number of free online tools like Papers, Zotero, and Mendeley. Mendeley also acts as a social media tool, allowing you to collect citations and share lists with others.

Rad Resources: There are many more things you can do with a bibliographic citation management tool than can be described here. A good place to get additional information is the Wikipedia page linked below. This page not only tells you about the many tools out there, it also includes a number of tables comparing the features of each tool for functionality such as importing, exporting, Word compatibility and more.

The American Evaluation Association is celebrating Literature Search Strategy Week with our colleagues at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. The contributions all this week are about using libraries, librarians, and library resources for evaluation projects. Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to . aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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