UMGC Library

Citation Management Tools: Which citation manager should I use?

Information about this Guide

This guide provides information about some citation management tools. General information about citation formatting can be found at the Library's Citing and Writing page.

Popular Citation Management Tools

Given the variety of citation management options available, it's important to choose the system that's right for you. The table below lists some of the more popular ones.  Note that the UMGC Library does not provide support for these tools; please see the citation management tool's own support documentation or contact the maker of the system if you need help with using any system.

Click on the tabs at the top of the page for detailed information about each of the tools listed in the table.

  Zotero EndNote Mendeley


(subject to change)

Free for 300 MB of storage

$20 per year for 2 GB of storage

$60 per year for 6 GB of storage

$120 per year for unlimited storage

$249.95 list price for one-time purchase; discounted pricing available for UMGC students, faculty, and staff

$99.95 list price for previous users to upgrade to the latest version

Free for 2 GB of storage

$55 per year for 5 GB of storage

$110 per year for 10 GB of storage

$165 per year for unlimited storage

Web/desktop Desktop and web versions Desktop and web versions Desktop and web versions
Importing From databases and web pages From databases From databases and web pages
PDFs PDF file management and organization; can sync with third-party annotation software Allows highlighting and note taking Allows highlighting and note taking
Sharing and collaborating Can sync group libraries Can share with up to 100 collaborators Several types of groups available. Users with free accounts can create only one group with three members.
Learning curve Easy to learn; simple design Not quite as user-friendly as other options Quick to install and easy to learn; user-friendly interface


Key Differences Between Zotero, EndNote, and Mendeley


  • Is compatible with Google Docs


  • Has the most storage included; unlimited reference and attachment storage is included in EndNote x9. Note that this program lives on your hard drive, so it will be limited by that.


  • Connects with social media platforms and facilitates connections between users
  • Has an associated Android and iOS compatible app, which works well on mobile devices


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This guide is based on the University of Maryland Health Sciences and Human Services Library's Citation Managers guide and is used with permission