This paper is focused on identifying open online tools to manage references, for its application in class projects, in the university context, and in scientific works. The main aim of this paper is to provide a set of tools to support university students and researchers to store all their research, and sort all their references, documents and notes in one place. This paper is an extension of the paper “Adjustment of students to be future researchers: The importance of a systematic literature review methodology for MSC students”  that proposes a guideline to help students to systematically perform the literature review phase in the research work. The provided systematic literature review methodology developed by , consists of six phases. The work developed in the present paper, focuses on phase (iv) managing and treating the results through building a personalised database; proposing in a more extended way a set of tools to manage references and build a database of the research work performed in the systematic literature review.
Section 1 will propose an introduction of the developed work. Considering the importance of managing references and centralise the research work in one site. Section 2 will propose and describe a set of online tools that are considered interesting for managing the research and sorting all the references collected when performing the research work. A table analysing the characteristics and the advantages and disadvantages of each identified bibliography and citation tool will be provided.
Characteristics such as: (i) pdf management; (ii) exportation; (iii) compatibility with Microsoft Word; (iv) electronic databases connection, including Scopus or scholar Google;(v) open-source supported; (vi) easy to use; etc. will be analysed.
According to the provided matrix an assessment process will be performed with the main aim of selecting of the most appropriate tools. In section 3, three most relevant tools are selected and illustrated with examples.
The three selected tools will be:(i) RefWorks,(ii) EndNote and (iii) Mendeley.
These three tools, used for managing bibliography and references, are selected due to its easiness of use and advantages such as:
(i) showcase the impact of the researchers work;
(ii) share reading lists, references and full-text articles with researchers’ network, publicly or privately and create groups to tackle research assignments, share feedback;
(iii) search and sort all of the references, documents and notes in one place, and store research securely and access it easily across all the researchers’ or students devices;
(iv) annotate and add sticky notes to capture thoughts;
(v) generate citations and bibliography as writing, in the style of choice; and
(vi) compatible with Microsoft Word, LibreOffice and BibTeX.
Moreover, Mendely is an open-source online tool compatible with Mac OS and Windows.
Finally, in section 4, the conclusions will be provided, considering the strengths of the proposed tools. To this regard, students and researchers will benefit from online tools, and will be supported by the centralisation of the research work in one place. Accordingly, phase iv of the systematic literature review  is covered, through the proposal of the tools for managing references.