Skip to Main Content
The University of Edinburgh home
Show/hide site search
Information Services

Physics and Astronomy

Subject guide to library related topics

Sources of help and advice on referencing

See also the Library Guide:

Referencing and Reference Management

Cite Them Right Online

Cite Them Right Online explains and demonstrates how to cite, both in-text and in a reference list or bibliography, a wide range of material types: books, journal articles, lecture notes, law reports, web pages, computer games, live performances...

Get to Cite Them Right Online from its DiscoverEd record.

Harvard (author-date) is shown throughout but many material types are demonstrated in other citation styles too: APA, Chicago, MHRA, MLA, OSCOLA, Vancouver.

Cite them right online logo

General information on referencing and plagiarism is also presented.

Reference management software tools


EndNote is supported by the University and available as a desktop and web based application.

  • The desktop version has the full range of features and functions.
  • EndNote online, is freely available.

From both you can export chosen references in BibTeX format for use in LaTeX.

Both versions provide automatic citing within Microsoft Word.

  • For Word installed on the open access lab computers, the "Cite While You Write" plug-in is already available and can be used with EndNote desktop or online.


EndNote desktop

EndNote desktop is on the Start menu of the University's open access computers and can be downloaded onto most University machines for free from the Software Centre in the Start menu.

EndNote desktop can also be downloaded for free by staff and students of the University for use on personal devices:

Download EndNote desktop for free, onto your own device

  • unavailable to staff and students of the Schools of Informatics, Mathematics and Physics & Astronomy.


EndNote online

Available to anyone but register via Web of Science for more file saving space.

Guide to registering for EndNote online (incl. Cite While You Write plug-in)

Then go directly:

EndNote demonstration

A good introduction to EndNote is this recording (30 minutes) made for Moray House School of Education and Sport.

The recording below, made for Clinical Psychology MSc students, includes generally useful information on eg how to find information on presenting citations in particular styles, creating cut and paste citations, exporting records from abstracting and indexing databases into reference management software. It includes a demonstration of EndNote desktop.

Just the powerpoint slides without narration

Citing and avoiding plagiarism

The recording (30 mins) of March 2021's Library Bitesize session How to reference and avoid plagiarism acts as a guide to sources of information and help with understanding why plagiarism must be avoided, the importance of citation styles and consistency in referencing as well as touching on quoting, paraphrasing and summarising the work the of others.

Just the powerpoint slides

Also worth looking at are the Institute for Academic Development's guidance and factsheets on good academic practice which include information on referencing and avoiding plagiarism:

Good academic practice

Choosing a reference management software tool

Reference management software lets you store, annotate and group references and also automatically creates citations and reference lists in your documents.

There are a number of different reference management software tools available. For help in deciding which is right for you, please see our software comparison table from the link below:

Software comparison table

There is also a self-enrol course on Learn which starts with reasons to use reference management software and includes learning resources for four of the most popular reference managers: Mendeley, Zotero, EndNote and Citavi. It ends with some frequently asked questions:

Choosing a reference manager self enrol Learn course

Reference management software tools which are not EndNote


Zotero is non-commercial, open source:

ZoteroBib is a free service that helps you build a bibliography instantly from any computer or device, without creating an account or installing any software: 

Help on using reference management software tools

The Digital Skills and Training programme includes workshops and webinars on EndNote for which anyone can sign up:

Digital Skills and Training website

Endnote, Mendeley and Zotero workshops are delivered online via the Institute of Academic Development (IAD):

IAD website

Your Academic Support Librarian is another source of advice.