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Our Favorite Citation Management Tools

There are a number of ways to keep your research materials organized. Here, we feature a few of our favorites.

Decide which research management tool would work best for you by comparing their basic features and functions below.

Have questions? Ask a librarian!


Zotero is an easy to use application for organizing your research materials, sharing them with collaborators, and citing them in a wide range of citation styles.

RefWorks is a tool for storing and sharing your research materials, and citing them in commonly-used citation styles. To set up an account, use your Macalester email address.

Mendeley allows you to store and organize your research materials, share them with others, and annotate documents.
Getting started
Accessibility Zotero RefWorks Mendeley
Versions Web-based & desktop Web-based Web-based & desktop
Desktop platforms

Windows, Mac, Linux


Windows, Mac, Linux

Web browsers

Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari

Google Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Safari

Google Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Safari

Cost & Storage Basic account free with 300MB cloud storage Free thanks to Institutional subscription with unlimited cloud storage Basic account free with 2GB cloud storage
Word processor integration

Plugins for Microsoft Word, Google Docs, and LibreOffice are automatically installed on your computer when you first start Zotero.

Write-n-Cite for Microsoft Word

RefWorks for Google Docs

Mendeley Cite for Microsoft Word
Built-in PDF annotation Yes Yes Yes
Option to share and collaborate Yes Yes Yes