Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Systematic Reviews: Bibliography Managers

Interested in writing a systematic review? This guide is designed to help you navigate the process.

Why Bibliography Managers?

Bibliography or citation managers can significantly help record and store the various literatures that are found in a systematic review. There is no one "best" citation manager for systematic reviews; selection is usually based on what is the most familiar to the researcher. Several common citation managers are RefWorks, EndNote, Mendeley, and Zotero. RefWorks and EndNote are fee-based products. Mendeley has a free version as well as a fee-based version. Zotero is available for free. EndNote is the most common citation manager used in systematic reviews according to a search of the Scopus database.

Articles of Interest

Ivey, C., & Crum, J (2018). Choosing the right citation management tool: EndNote, Mendeley, RefWorks, or Zotero. Journal of the Medical Library Assocatiation, 106(3), 399-403,

Lorenzetti, D. L., & Ghali, W.A. (2013). Reference management software for systematic reviews and meta-analyses: An exploration of usage and usability. BMC Medical Research Methodology, 13(1), 141.

Which citation manager is best for you?