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Reference Management Software

There are many referencing tools you might hear about and each offers slightly different features but they all work in much the same way. Which one you use is up to you as you will need to judge your need based on the task you are completing, but we recommend you speak to your friends, colleagues and faculty to see what they would advise. Our reference management software quick guides will then help you set up an account and find help information. There are other tools and software available, so you may want to explore further if this selection is not right for you. To help you make your decision, start by taking a look at our reference management tools comparison table:

EndNote is a desktop and online application for storing and managing references. As well as finding and collecting reference data and full-text PDFs, it can help make your academic life a little easier by creating bibliographies and inserting citations into your documents as you write. It’s also supported by Newcastle University and is free to all staff and students.
Mendeley is a free web and desktop reference manager and academic social network that can help you to organise your research, collaborate with others online and discover the latest research. Mendeley is owned and developed by Elsevier (same company that owns and develops Scopus, ScienceDirect etc.)

We recommend you use the Cite Them Right Harvard style in Mendeley unless you have been asked to use another style by your programme or supervisor

If using Mendeley on a campus PC, all of the main PC clusters across campus have access the desktop version of Mendeley (about 95% of Campus PCs) and you can also access Mendeley via Azure.

Zotero is a free, open source reference management tool that allows you to collect, cite, organise and share your bibliographic research data. It is run by an independent, non-profit making organisation and is web based.

We recommend you use the Cite Them Right Harvard style in Zotero unless you have been asked to use another style by your programme or supervisor

If using Zotero on campus, we highly recommend that you access it on your own device, however the desktop version is available on PCs in the main computer cluster on level 2 of the Philip Robinson Library.

BibTeX is reference management tool which is widely used with documents created in LaTeX and is common in science, computing and engineering disciplines.

Simple referencing tools

Cite Them Right Online (also available in print) is designed to help students understand the importance of referencing accurately. It can be used to help cite and reference just about any source, in many of the styles you need. The Harvard at Newcastle style that is used across the University is based on the guidance in Cite Them Right. 

While Cite Them Right won't generate the reference for you, the website includes a you try feature on the source pages, which enables you to easily construct your own reference by replacing the example text with information relevant to your source:

Screenshot of Cite them Right showing where you can practice referencing

ZoteroBib is a simple referencing tool that helps you build a reference list without creating an account or installing any software. Paste in a website URL, book ISBN, article DOI, PMID or search by title, and you will be able to copy a formatted reference list to the clipboard to paste into your document. 

There are many free and simple referencing tools to choose from and you might also these tools useful: