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From why you should publish to picking a journal and all the steps in between, this guide will help you publish a manuscript.

Citation Management Software

Citation Management Software

Eventually your research will require that you keep track of many citations on one or more topics. At that point, you should consider using a citation management software to help you format and organize your references.

What are Citation Managers?

Citation mangers are computer programs that allow you to generate, save, and sort citations online or on a desktop client. These managers can also generate in-text citations and a bibliography from inside a document, saving you time.

Which one should you use?

There are a lot of programs on the market, both free and subscription based. The UND School of Medicine and Health Sciences generally recommends Zotero due to its ease of use, free access, and unlimited storage. However, there are others you could consider as well, including: Mendeley, RefWorks, EndNote, CiteULike, BibMe, etc.

Here are some questions you may want to consider as you decide which program best fits your needs: 

  • Are you collaborating with another individual or group that already is using a citation manager?
  • How many citations do you want to organize?
  • Do you want software that will be available over time regardless of your status as a student, employee, or health professional?
  • What databases do you typically search, and what options for direct exporting (automatically adding) citations are offered?
  • Does the citation management software work with Microsoft Word, Google Docs, or whatever word processing software you will be using?
  • What citation styles do you need for formatting references and can you change citation styles quickly and easily as needed?


Using Zotero

Zotero is free open-source citation management software by an independent, nonprofit organization that you can use as either a desktop application or an online account.

  • UND provides free, unlimited storage to all Zotero users who register with a email address!

    • If you signed up with a address originally, this should be reflected in your online Storage page in settings.

    • If you signed up with a different email, you can add your address on your main Account page.  Add your UND email address, and after you get the verification email, set that as your primary email address.

    • If you have already signed up for a private storage account, Zotero will suspend your renewals, but you will not receive a rebate for the rest of your subscription term.

      This storage upgrade applies to all your libraries, including shared group libraries.

Zotero also allows you to create shared folders so that you can work together with your colleagues and its desktop version includes a Microsoft Word plugin which will automate the creation of your citations and bibliography. Zotero is also compatible with Google Docs, Open Office, and other free word processing programs as well as screen reading software.

Zotero maintains that they have no financial interest in your private information and data.

Listen to UND faculty Rhoda Owens, Cynthia Prescott, and Joe Vacek talk about how they use Zotero, benefits of Zotero, and how it can be used as a tool in the research and writing process: 2023 Zotero Faculty Panel Discussion.

Zotero Basic Info:

  • Zotero is a strong choice for users whose research content is diverse. Its single-click capture makes it easy to gather citation records for both PDF and non-PDF content, including websites, databases, catalogs and audio and video files. Zotero also allows users to enable the retrieval of PDF metadata to create citation records just from dragging a PDF into Zotero.

  • Zotero allows users to create profiles and public and private groups.

  • Zotero is screen reader compatible.

  • Zotero is free, open source, and cannot be acquired by a company, so if you want to retain access to your reference libraries even if you lose your University of North Dakota affiliation, you can create a personal account to share with.

Video instructions on how to download and use Zotero:

Written instructions on how to download and use Zotero