What are your favorite citation tools?

BACK IN MY DAY (cue groans) we had to use the print MLA manual to do our citations! Students these days have got it easy with their EasyBib and their RefWorks and their Zotero.

A strange artifact found in the Weed pile.
A strange artifact found in the Weed pile.

But seriously, what are your favorite citation tools? I think citations can be one of the hardest parts of student assignments, and that a lot of plagiarism could be avoided with properly attributed sources. Students are delighted when I show them the built-in citation makers in our databases.

I was inspired this morning by a post over at the Unclutterer blog about Organizing References and Bibliographies. They only list the citation management tools EasyBib and CiteThisForMe. I admit I used EasyBib a lot in college/grad school.

Here at ASU, we’ve got a subscription to RefWorks, which I’ve used a bit, but find the importing and tagging to be a little cumbersome.

I know fans of Zotero, which is a free citation management tool, and Mendeley, which is free as well. Oh, and there’s EndNote, too, which I think thesis and dissertation-writers are a fan of, but I hear is pretty costly.

ASU Libraries has this neat Library Guide to choosing a citation management tool. I found this helpful Citations and Bibliographies Library Guide from Neumann University that helps students identify the parts of sources for easier citation.

And of course, there’s the Owl at Purdue, which got me through my MLIS.

What are your favorite tools and what makes them great?

Procrastinating and Productivity: Start your semester right!

It’s Spring! (Semester, anyways). Classes are starting today at ASU and NAU! They start Wednesday at UA. How about your campus? I know I’m excited to have students on campus again! But this is also an important moment to take stock of what you’ve accomplished this academic year – because it’s now half-over!

If you’ve got projects you’ve been sandbagging, here’s a book for you: Still Procrastinating? The no-regrets guide to getting it done (links to book review). I love that this book identifies the various types of procrastinators: thrill-seekers, indecisives, self-saboteurs, perfectionists…which kind are you?

Here’s a lot of productivity tips from the Unclutterer blog: how to keep your New Year’s resolutions, how to unclutter your to-do lists, and how to stay on top of everything! I know my to-do list just keeps getting longer.

If you’re thinking about revamping your infolit teaching, here’s a great review of the latest Project Information Literacy report, titled “Learning the Ropes: How Freshmen Conduct Research Once They’ve Entered College.”  TL;DR: They’re overwhelmed with information, so keep it simple!