Online references management

Another to-do is to get a decent academic references database sorted out, since I’m going to be doing a lot more papers and bids in the immediate future.

Years ago I had a system that worked beautifully and Got It Right (BibTeX) … but that doesn’t play well if you’re not writing La/TeX documents.  EndNote with Word plug-in was the only game after that and was so appallingly annoying that it’s easier and quicker (IMO) to do it all by hand.

But I think I need something better now, and the field has changed profoundly.  So – I’m in the market for a new system.  Planning to explore RefWorks, Zotero, CiteULike, Connotea, HotReference, and anything else I can find quickly.  RefWorks gains a lot of points out of the gate for being supported by the OU Library, with handy linkages from their search results pages.

Any other suggestions?  Recommendations?

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Author: dougclow

Academic in the Institute of Educational Technology, the Open University, UK. Interested in technology-enhanced learning and learning analytics.

1 thought on “Online references management”

  1. I’m just getting to grips with this for the first time. I’ve been told by several people: ‘If you learn nothing else this year, learn to reference and begin to build your bibiography.’

    I made a request for guidance on a JISC mailing list, but I headed for the OU-supported stuff first.

    EndNote X – Gah ghastly. Complicated, gets it wrong, and I can only use it on my mahine at the OU, unless I want to pay for a license.

    RefWorks – Good. Lots of useful functionality like looking everything up from an ISBN on a web page. Searches web pages for bibiographic info. Web based, so I can use it anywhere, and can export refs to a file for use in more local systems. Occasionally Gets it Wrong, but usually only because fields are over-populated, so info gets repeated. Easily caught and cleaned.

    I might not go on to try the Open Source ware, at least not while OU is paying my RefWorks license.

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