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March 28, 2007

Citation Generators - Part II

Today, Guest Blogger Jane Kessler describes some of the tools available on the web for formatting citations.

Zotero
Zotero is a new open source product developed at George Mason University. It works in the Firefox browser and allows users to collect, manage and cite sources (in APA, MLA, or Chicago style.) It can be downloaded for free at http://www.zotero.org. Some of the special features of Zotero include the ability to add links, images, pdf files, tags, and whole web pages to the information about a source. It also automatically captures citation information from periodical databases, library catalogs, and Web pages, so users don’t have to type in the information. International students should note that the interface is available in multiple languages and that records and notes in any language can be saved. One word of caution – it’s still Beta and all the bugs may not be worked out.

NoodleBib
NoodleBib is part of NoodleTools, an award winning suite of interactive research tools (http://www.noodletools.com/) developed by teacher-librarian Debbie Abilock. NoodleBib formats and automatically alphabetizes bibliographies, based on the rules of the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 6th edition, or the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 5th edition. A three month subscription is $4, a six month subscription is $6 and 1 year is $8.
NoodleBib provides templates for over 50 types of sources including books, journal, newspaper and magazine articles, reference books, video and audio recordings, web sites, e-mail communications, online postings to discussion groups, research reports, proceedings, and theses and dissertations. The user selects the output style (APA or MLA), the source type and format (print or online), and then fills in the required information in the template. Helpful, detailed instructions are listed to the right of each field. For example, in APA style, the user is instructed to capitalize only the first letter of the first word in the article title and in the subtitle (if any), as well as the first letter of any proper nouns. After inputting the information, the citation is generated and the list is started. Each new citation is added to the list in the proper alphabetical order. Users can edit citations at any time.
Users can create any number of citations and any number of bibliographies. The list can be saved in rtf format and opened in word processing programs such as Word. Users can also see a sample in-text reference for each citation.

Check back Next Week for writeups of 3 more citation generators!

March 26, 2007

Instruction Sessions Week of 3/26/07-3/30/-07

Dewey Graduate Library offers short seminars, workshops and tours that can help you get started on your research. Sign up in advance, either online, in person at the Reference Desk, or by calling 442-3691.

The following sessions are scheduled this week:

Thursday:
4:30 PM: Nonprofit Organizations - Information Sources

Friday:
1:00 PM: Nonprofit Organizations - Information Sources

March 21, 2007

Citation Generators: Part I

Dewey welcomes Guest Blogger Jane Kessler, who is offering up her expertise on citation generators.

You’ve done your research and written your paper. Now comes the part most people find tedious and boring – formatting your bibliography. Programs like EndNote, can do this for you automatically, among other things, but they can be expensive and have a steep learning curve. Because they have some many features, they are usually more appropriate for doctoral students and faculty. There are other options. There are several interactive online tools that help students format bibliographies. These tools are inexpensive, easy to use, and convenient. In upcoming days the following tools will be described: Zotero, Noodlebib, Easybib, Citation Machine, and DocsCite.

A Few Words of Caution

These new tools are a great way to simplify creating a bibliography, but users should keep a few things in mind. Remember that responsibility for accurate citations rests with the author of the paper. These programs are a great starting point, but users should review the citations. Most of the sites have disclaimers directing users to the appropriate style manual for definitive guidelines. A good way to check citations is to use the library’s handouts (http://library.albany.edu/reference/style.html.)
When using citation generators, the old rule applies: garbage in, garbage out. If you enter the publisher’s name as the author’s name, these programs will not correct it. In addition, these types of programs typically don’t have spell checkers and you may have to enter the data a certain way for the citation to be correct. So enter your data carefully according to the instructions and be sure to use spell check once you’ve transferred the bibliography to your word processing program.

Next week: Zotero and Noodlebib...

March 19, 2007

Instruction Sessions: Week of 3/19 -3/23

The Dewey Library has no instructional sessions this week. If you need help finding or using library resources, you may want to consider making an appointment with a Subject Bibliographer or Reference Librarian. An appointment of this nature can help you focus and refine a thesis topic, help you choose the best keywords and search terms for database searches, and point you to the most useful print and online resources that will provide you with quality, relevant materials on your topic.

The following librarians are available for one-on-one appointments at Dewey:

Mary Jane Brustman: Subjects: Criminal Justice and Social Welfare
Phone: 442-3517, E-mail: mbrustman@uamail.albany.edu

Richard Irving: Subjects: Public Policy, Public Administration, Political Science, and Law
Phone: 442-3698, E-mail: ririving@uamail.albany.edu

Elaine Lasda Bergman: Subjects: Reference, DIALOG searches
Phone: 442-3695, E-mail: ebergman@uamail.albany.edu

Heather Shalhoub: Subjects: Reference
Phone: 442-3692, E-mail: hshalhoub@uamail.albany.edu

****NOTE: Library and Information Science students should contact Jane Kessler at the University Library (main library) during the current semester. Jane can be reached at 442-3830 or jkessler@uamail.albany.edu.

March 12, 2007

Instruction Sessions: Week of 3/12/07-3/16/07

Dewey Graduate Library offers short seminars, workshops and tours that can help you get started on your research. Sign up in advance, either online, in person at the Reference Desk, or by calling 442-3691.

The following sessions are scheduled this week:

Wednesday:
4:00 PM: Introduction to Research Databases

Thursday:
4:30 PM: Introduction to Research Databases

March 8, 2007

CINAHL: New Database for Full-Text Health Articles

The University Libraries now subscribe to CINAHL, a comprehensive index to literature on health and medicine. Articles from 3,100 journal titles as well as books, videos, papers, etc. are indexed. Full text articles are included for 560 journal titles. A broad timespan is covered: 1937 to the present, with weekly updates.

Mary Jane Brustman, Bibliographer for Social Welfare has this to say about the new database: “There is full text material here for many quality health and medical journals. This is a terrific source for social work and gerontology!!��?

CINAHL is available through the Libraries’ Database Finder. For tips on searching CINAHL, stop by the Reference Desk, send us an e-mail with your research question, or call 442-3691 for a one-on-one appointment.

March 5, 2007

Instruction Sessions: Week of 3/5/07-3/9/07

Dewey Graduate Library offers short seminars, workshops and tours that can help you get started on your research. Sign up in advance, either online, in person at the Reference Desk, or by calling 442-3691.

The following sessions are scheduled this week:

Wednesday:
2:00 PM: Social Welfare Research Seminar
4:00 PM: Conducting Research from Home

Thursday:
4:30 PM: Conducting Research From Home