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Choosing a Citation Manager: Comparing EndNote, Mendeley and Zotero

Research Librarian

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Jeanine Fletcher
Contact:
Pendergrass Library

2407 River Drive

Knoxville, TN 37996

(865) 974-9164

jwilliamson@utk.edu

Choosing a Citation Manager

The University Libraries provides support for EndNote, Mendeley, and Zotero. EndNote is available at no cost to UTK students, faculty, and staff through OIT’s software download site. Mendeley and Zotero are free to use, but charge for extra storage.

All of these citation managers allow you to

  1. Store and organize your references.
  2. Works well with PDF content
  3. Back up your files by syncing to a cloud-based version.
  4. Import citations from databases
  5. Highlight and annotate PDFs.
  6. Inserts citations directly into Word.
  7. Automatically format citations and bibliographies in APA, MLA, and thousands of other styles.

All of these tools work well, so it’s really a matter of personal choice. You can always migrate to another tool, but it becomes less convenient to switch the longer you use the application and the more attachments you have to move.

Reasons to choose EndNote

  • Has been around longer than Mendeley and Zotero, so it has some advanced features that may be useful to your workflow
  • Allows unlimited storage at no extra charge
  • Provides good technical support
  • Allows sharing citation libraries with other users if they also have EndNote
  • Provided by UT as an institutional subscription

Reasons to choose Mendeley

  • Relatively easy to learn
  • Works well with BibTex
  • Allows you to create up to 5 groups and to share files with 25 users per group.
  • More free cloud storage than Zotero

Reasons to choose Zotero

  • Is open source and free to use (can upgrade if you need more storage)
  • Works well with web pages and other non-PDF content
  • Can easily collaborate and share resources
  • Allows easy capture of web pages and references on the web