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Bibliography Generation and Citation Tools

Top 10 Free Bibliography Generator and Citation Tools

Bibliography Generation and Citation Tools

While the learning process of conducting research is fun, the writing process is tedious. 

After the tons of efforts of looking for related literature and fact-checking your resources, you’ll have to cite and list your resources properly, or else — you’ll face a plagiarism case.

Not only that, depending on what your institution requires, there are different citation formats for you to follow. 

Here’s the good news! Developers knew the need for a bibliography and citation generator and developed tools to assist your research writing.

Let me share the Top 10 bibliography generator and citation tools to upgrade your writing process. The best thing is that they offer free access.

Gather your notepad, and read on!


CiteFast is an online citation generator that not only claims to be free but also to be quick. This program generates APA, MLA, and Chicago citations in the most recent versions.

CiteFast can produce citations from URLs, ISBNs, and other sources automatically. You can also manually type in your reference’s information. 

Also, you can hover over fields for reference data to see instructions on how to format your sources correctly. 

You can preserve your citations with CiteFast. Should you not have an account, your citations will be erased after four days of inactivity if you do not create one. 

When you create an account, you can save citations indefinitely. Even if you don’t have an account, the site will remember your previous searches when you return.

Access: Free; register to keep your citation history
Services: Titles, authors, and ISBNs can all be used to find what you’re looking for.
Additional Features: Effortlessly copy and paste your citations, and export them to Word. Store them in your account for up to four days. 


Mendeley is a reference management software that lets you cite sources without leaving your document. The plugin is in the References tab in Microsoft Word. 

It lets you add in-text citations and make bibliographies automatically. If you have the Mendeley desktop app, you can keep and organize all your research there. 

They also have Mendeley Web Importer, which lets you save web pages into your desktop app automatically. 

Easily add citations when you’re ready to write your paper, and a pop-up box will show up. It also lets you search your Mendeley library for keywords or by the author, title, or year of the source material that you want to look up in your library. 

Mendeley Cite also lets you change the citation and keep the source in your reference list. Even though you can put the author’s name in your paragraph, you could just put the year in parentheses. 

Access: Free access
Services: Bibliographies are generated from your library, shareable with other users, and assist in organizing all materials in one easily-manageable library.
Additional Features: Access from your PC, smartphone, or tablet,  and import papers from other apps


BibMe is an online bibliography generator that simplifies the time-consuming task of citation. You can fill in your sources using BibMe: auto-fill and manual entry modes. 

With auto-fill mode, all you have to do is type in your source’s keywords or URL, choose the relevant search result, and BibMe will fill in the citation data. 

BibMe searches other databases such as Amazon, FindArticles, Yahoo News, and CiteULike Academic Papers to generate auto-citations.

You will be prompted to provide any information Bibme could not locate as a final step.

After that, you will be able to create a citation. You’ll need to register an account if you wish to download your citation to Word or store your work online.

Access: free; membership plan is available to unlock more features
Services: Search by ISBN, author, or title
Additional Features: Bibliographies and citations, plagiarism checker, and grammar checker.

Citation Machine

Researchers love Citation Machine because it has a simple interface, aside from providing a free online bibliography generator. 

Users are requested to identify the source material, search for it through URL or search keyword, and input any missing information to complete the citation, as with most citation generators. 

Completed citations are saved in your online bibliography, which you may then copy & paste or export to Word. 

While the citation generator is free, you can only keep it for 48 hours. If you want to keep your bibliography longer, you must purchase Citation Machine Plus’s premium version.

Worry not because they have an option to continue mentioning material in the free version. Just watch an ad every 48 hours.

Access: Free; paid subscription for additional services (complete bibliographies and plagiarism detection); registration required to download citations in Word or swap formats.
Services: Search by title, author, or ISBN; the tool fills in the names of the authors and the title of the book, but the year and location of publishing must be entered manually.
Additional Features: making parenthetical citations, proofreading for plagiarism and grammar mistakes



From their name, EasyBib is uncomplicated to use. EasyBib, like Citation Machine, is part of the Chegg Service online learning platform. 

This explains why it has an interface and functions comparable to Citation Machine. 

Although free access is limited only to citing MLA format, this citation generator has the advantage of filling in specific details such as publication year and publishing company.

Not only that. EasyBib can also reference published blogs online, comics, reports, internet databases, patents, digital photos, federal rules, and many other types of resources are all available.

Access: Only MLA format citations are available for free without registration.
Services: Titles, authors, and ISBNs can all be used to find what you’re looking for.
Additional Features: Pro accounts have access to APA, Chicago, and over 100 additional citation styles.

Cite This for Me

Cite This for Me has a user-friendly interface that looks and feels like a Microsoft Word page. It generates citations in every citation style you can think of. 

Although it can only support a limited number of source types, it compensates with many citation formats. 

Its collaboration features stand out as it offers the same download, export, and copy-and-paste options as other citation generators. 

This program also comes with a browser extension called Cite This for Me: Web Citer, which allows you to cite sources with just one click.

However, the APA, MLA, Harvard, and Chicago Bibliography styles are the only ones supported by the browser plugin. 

The main disadvantage of using Cite This For Me is that your bibliography is only valid for roughly a week. 

The tool has a countdown timer that displays the number of seconds until you lose your work. To avoid this, create an account and take advantage of more features.

Access: The basic version is free; a premium account ($15 per month) is available for additional features.
Services: distinct resource kinds; ISBN, author, and searches; 

Group sharing and bibliography export 

Additional Features: Multiple bibliography creator, plagiarism checker


Despite Paperpile being a subscription-based reference management system, it offers a free Chrome extension that allows users to store, organize, and access all of their studies in one location. 

The free reference manager is a Google Docs sidebar add-on that allows you to search for references online or in your work using author, keywords, DOI, or PubMed ID. 

Word plugins for Mac and Windows are included in the premium edition. You can export your document to Word or Evernote once it’s finished. 

Access: Free downloadable google chrome extension
Services: In-text citations and bibliographies can be created manually or automatically
Additional Features: Free storage and sorting of sources alphabetically


Citation Builder

The North Carolina State University Library offers a free online bibliography builder called Citation Builder. 

It has a straightforward user interface with resource type and citation style dropdown menus. 

Simply select from the dropdown menu and manually enter the information for the resources that will generate a citation once you click submit. 

After that, copy and paste your references into your document.

Access: Free access
Services: Manual data entry for citation
Additional Features: A pop-up window for easy copying and pasting of citation entries



KnightCite is a free online citation generator provided by Calvin College’s Hekman Library. It was designed by a student at the institution to provide other students with a quick and reliable citation tool. 

This utility generates MLA, APA, and Chicago citations. To develop a complete description of a source, you have more than ten features. There are even fields for editions and volumes in the generator.

Access: Free access
Services: Manual data entry for citation
Additional Features: Edit and save citation history



CiteMaker is a bibliography maker that promises fast output in three easy steps: select citation style, select input method and generate a citation.

Access: Free access; register to keep citation history for a month
Services: Automatic and manual entry
Additional Features: bibliographical entries; in-text citations


Research writing can be intimidating, given the risk of facing a plagiarism case if you don’t cite your references correctly.

Thankfully, these tools make citation and bibliography writing uncomplicated. Use these free tools now, and deliver your research effortlessly.


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