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MLA Style for Writing: Citation Software

This guide will cover MLA format for papers.

Citation Software Defined

Citation tools can go by many names: citation software, citation managers, citation generators, reference management software, bibliographic management tools, etc. While the name may vary, they do have some common elements including the main function of collecting and organizing citations. Most of these software packages also allow for the creation of works cited or references lists in a variety of formats and styles. The ability to integrate with word processing software is a key feature of many of the more popular citation software.

What are citation generators?

Citation generators are tools that automatically create citations for your research materials.

What are citation managers?

Citation managers not only generate citations automatically, but also helps you collect, organize, store and often share your research materials.

Are citation software products free?

A multitude of citation software exists including free and paid options. RefWorks and EndNote are popular retail citation software in use at colleges and universities. Some popular free software include Zotero and Mendeley. Note, while these latter are free, they do offer additional features and/or storage for a fee. 

Are the citations created by citation software accurate?

As these tools are becoming more popular it is important to note that they have limitations and should not be used in isolation. Mountain View College Library strongly recommends that all citations should be checked for accuracy using either the MLA or APA citation format.

Citation Management Software Available to You

Mountain View College Library provides two citation management software products to faculty, staff and students:

  1. Refworks
  2. Noodletools

To create a Refworks account: 

  1. Go to Refworks
  2. Create your account using your DCCCD email address:
    • Student example:
  3. Check your email for an account verification message from RefWorks.

Already have an account? Just login at RefWorks Sign In


To register for a Noodletools account:

  1. Go to Noodletools
  2. Select Register. The subscription type is "An account linked to the school/library subscription or trial"
  3. Select your patron status, campus location from the drop-down menu.
  4. Choose a Personal ID and password.

Already have an account? Just log in at Noodletools Sign In


Citation Software Products

Please be aware that automatically generated citations may not provide accurate results. If you choose to use a citation software product, take the time to make the necessary corrections using the appropriate citation guides. Remember: It is your responsibility to double-check the results!

Citation Generators

Here are a selection of popular citation generators

Database Cite Tools (ProQuest, EBSCO, etc.)

Example: ProQuest databases

Screenshot of Proquest Cite Tool

Free Online Generators

Microsoft Office

Citation Managers

 Here are a selection of popular free and paid citation management software products.

Free Fee-based

Zotero Logo


Quick Start Guide





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