Critical review of referencing software when used with OSCOLA

Sandra Meredith


This case study considers the main features of three referencing software programs - Endnote, Refworks and Zotero - and their advantages and disadvantages for legal scholars. It defines the key useful features of referencing software as being a database for storing information about references or citations; an interface for downloading bibliographic data from catalogues and databases; an interface for inserting that information into footnotes and creating bibliographies; and the possibility of having a variety of styles in which citations can be formatted (OSCOLA, Bluebook, AGLC etc). The software is considered in light of responses to a survey of Oxford University Law Faculty academics and research students about how they manage reference information. A skills level rating is provided for each aspect of the three software programs considered. Other issues, such as storage and annotation of PDFs, sharing libraries and cross referencing of footnotes are also briefly considered.

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