Research Tools

So what tools are you using to manage your research data? My favorite tool for storing and categorizing my bibliographic information is Endnote. I basically use Endnote because I love its ability to switch to multiple standards such as Turabian or APA. If I have a paper that needs to be reformatted from APA to Chicago, all I have to do is tell Microsoft Word to reformat my paper with Chicago and instantly all of my references and bibliography formatting are changed. My colleague also recommended to me to use Endnote as my note taking tool for keeping track of research notes for the books that I’m reading. That way, I’m able to have that information at my disposal when I’m writing. Finally, I love how I can download and link PDF versions of documents into my Endnote database. The PDF versions of my documents travel with my Endnote library and I’m able to have those documents with me, even when I don’t have access to my library or our electronic journal databases.

There are many other options available, both new and old, that you can use for managing your reference lists. For the old school geeky types, there’s always LaTeX and BibTeX. There are also some great Web 2.0 apps available that are free such as BibMe, EasyBib (MLA is free, APA is $7.99 a year), and there is always zotero, a Firefox extension that offers some great tools for keeping track of references within Firefox.

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