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Resources for Education Grad Students: Citation Managers

Citation Managers

What is it?

A citation manager is a program that uses both software and the cloud to gives researchers the ability to store, organize, and cite sources with ease.

With citation managers, you can:

  • Save and keep track of your sources in one place
  • Organize your sources with folders, notes, and tags
  • Quickly generate bibliographies
  • Collaborate with others using the same citation manager
  • Integrate sources in Microsoft Word

Why use one? 

There is a slight learning curve with citation managers, but once you figure out how to use it, you will be happy you did. Simply having all your sources in one place is a huge step in getting organized. Personally, I like using citation managers to keep PDFs all in one place, organize my sources using folders and sub-folders, take notes, annotate PDFs, and quickly create APA citations. 

Pick one that is right for you

There are a few different citation managers that you can choose from. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out


EndNote is the citation manager licensed by the University of Iowa. EndNote is owned by Clarivate Analytics and provides a free basic account (up to 2 GB storage). EndNote is especially useful when conducting large-scale reviews such as systematic reviews or scoping reviews. It is a powerful software that requires some technical competence. You can find many workshops on how to use EndNote through Hardin Library.


Zotero is a free (up to 300 MB) and open-source software that is owned by the non-profit company, Corporation for Digital Scholarship. Some students like Zotero because it is simpler and more user-friendly than EndNote. 


Mendeley is a free (up to 2GB) citation manager owned by Elsevier. 

Other Resources