Alerts and bibliographical software

Using a tailored environment

Setting up alerts in databases can be a valuable tool for staying updated with the latest research in your field. There are three types of alerts commonly used:

  • TOC Alerts (Table of Contents Alerts): These alerts notify you of new issues or articles published in a specific journal. You can subscribe to receive notifications whenever a new issue is released, allowing you to stay up-to-date with the latest research from that particular journal.
  • Search Alerts: These alerts are based on your specific search query. When you set up a search alert, the database will regularly re-run your search and notify you of any new records that match your search criteria. This way, you can receive updates on new publications that are relevant to your research interests.
  • Citation Alerts: These alerts notify you when a particular publication you are interested in gets cited by other researchers in new publications. This is helpful in tracking the impact and relevance of a specific article or study over time.

By using these personalized alerting services, you can save time and effort in manually searching for new publications and ensure that the most relevant and up-to-date research comes directly to you.

Setting up alerts for journals (TOC-alert)

You can set up alerts for journals (or clusters of journals) to receive email or RSS notifications when a new issue of the journal becomes available online. These alerts are often called TOC-alerts (TOC = Table of Contents) because they typically include the table of contents of the new journal issue.


  • Sign in to the personalized environment of the database where you found the journal. If it is your first time, you may need to register and create an account.
  • Navigate to the specific journal for which you want to activate a TOC-alert (e.g., Administrative Science Quarterly from Sage Journals).
  • There are usually two options to activate an alert:
    - Via email: You will receive an email notification whenever a new issue of the journal is added to the database.
    - Via RSS: You will receive a notification in your feed reader when a new issue of the journal is added to the database.


TOC-alert on a journal in EBSCOhost

  • Search for a journal in the A-tot-Z list (for example, JABM: Journal of Accounting, Business & Management) and click on the source where you found that journal (in this case: Business Source Complete, a database of EBSCOhost).

    JABM in A-Z lijst

  • First, register as a user on EBSCOhost (one-time process). This will allow you to access the personalized features of the database. Then, click on 'Share' on the right side, and then select 'E-mail Alert'.

    JABM in BSC

  • Enter your email address in the 'E-mail to' field, and choose one of the two options for 'E-mail contents':
    - 'Link to table of contents': if you only want to see the table of contents
    - 'Link to individual articles': if you also want to see the individual articles

    Create Alert BSC

  • If you only want to be notified about full-text articles, check the box for 'Alert on full text only'.
  • Under 'Results format', you can choose between 'Brief', 'Detailed', or 'Bibliographic Manager'.
  • You can also create an RSS feed at the bottom.
  • Afterward, click on 'Save Alert'.

TOC-alert on a journal in Sage

  • Search for the journal Administrative Science Quarterly in the A-tot-Z list and then click on the link 'Sage Journals'; this will take you to the website of Sage Journals.

    ASQ in A-Z lijst
  • Register yourself as a user at Sage Journals (one-time setup). This will allow you to access the personalized features of the database.
  • Under 'Keep up to date', you will find 'Email Alerts'. Click on 'Sign up'. Check the box for 'New Content' and then click on 'Create Email Alert'.

    ASQ in Sage

  • Click on 'Update'.

    ASQ in Sage Alerts

Alerts via TOC services

You can also use a TOCs service, such as Journal TOCs. These are free portal sites that bring together journals from hundreds of scientific publishers. With this service, you can set up a TOC-alert across different databases.

Setting alerts for search queries (search alert)

You can set up alerts on search queries, so that you receive email or RSS notifications about new publications that match your predefined search query. You can choose the time interval (day, week, month, etc.) and often the period during which this alert is active.


  • Log in to the personalized environment of the database where you conducted the search. If it is your first time, you will need to register.
  • Go to your search query to activate the search alert. In some databases, you can set up this alert via the Search History.
  • There are usually two options to activate an alert:
    - Via email: You will receive an email notification when a new record is added to the database that matches your search query.
    - Via RSS: You will receive a notification in your feedreader when a new record is added to the database that matches your search query.

Example of a search alert in the Web of Science Core Collection

  • Register as a user on the Web of Science platform. This will enable you to access the personalized features of the database.
  • Under 'Documents,' choose 'Web of Science Core Collection'. In this example, we will search for 'oil.'

    Search Alert in WOS
  • Then click 'Create Alert'.

    WOS Create Alert

  • Give a name to your search query and press 'Create'.

WOS Create search alert

Setting alerts for citations (citation alert)

You can set up alerts for new citations of a publication, in other words, new publications that cite a publication marked by you. Researchers use this functionality to track how their own publications are used and cited in the scientific literature.


  • Register as a user to access the personalized environment of the database where you conducted the search. You need to register only once if it is your first time logging in.
  • Click on the reference for which you want to activate a citation alert. Possible options may include 'Create citation alert' or 'Track record'.
  • There are usually two ways to activate the alert:
    - Via email: You will receive an email notification when a new record is added to the database, citing the specified publication.
    - Via RSS (XML): You will receive a notification in your feed reader when a new record is added to the database, citing the specified publication.

Example of a citation alert in the Web of Science

  • Register as a user on Web of Science to access the personalized features of the database.
  • Search for the article you want to track in the database. In the example, we are tracking the citations of an article from Scientific American by David Stipp about the possibility of living longer.
  • Click on the title of the article to go to the full record. There, select the option 'Create Citation Alert' to activate the alert.

Citation alert in WOS

Setting alerts for new titles in the library catalogue

Go to the library catalogue and click on 'Alerting' in the main menu. There, you can sign in and either set up an alert via the overview of available profiles or request a specific profile.

Overview of available profiles

  • The library has already prepared several fixed profiles for you. To subscribe, simply click on the profile (e.g., acquisitions biology).
  • You can then add additional selection criteria (such as language, library, publication date, etc.).

Available Profiles ANET

Requesting a specific profile

  • Here you provide a detailed description of your request and send it to the helpdesk. They will create the profile for you. Once it is set up, the desired profile will appear in your list of subscribed profiles.


  • In this section, you can fill in some personal parameters. Do not forget to register if you have made any changes.

Managing citations

Using specialized software like reference managers can significantly simplify the process of managing and citing references in academic work. These reference managers allow you to store and organize your references in a library, making it easy to access and cite them in your publications with just a few clicks. This way, citing becomes much more efficient, and you can maintain a consistent and growing library of references for all your work.

Reference managers ensure that you have all the necessary details of a bibliographic reference, such as page numbers and place of publication, readily available, eliminating the need to scramble for missing information at the last moment.

Here are some examples of reference managers:

  • Zotero: A free reference manager that allows you to collect, organize, cite, and share references, and it also offers browser extensions to easily save references from websites.
  • Mendeley: Another free reference manager that provides tools for managing and organizing references, as well as collaborating with others.
  • EndNote: A widely used reference manager that offers both a free online version called EndNote Basic and an extended desktop version, which is available through UHasselt's institutional license.
  • Juris-M: A free reference manager designed specifically for legal research and citation.

It is crucial to maintain proper folder management to ensure the effectiveness of using reference managers. Organizing references into separate folders for each paper or project can help avoid confusion and make the process of generating a bibliography smoother.

Remember to review imported references for any errors and make manual adjustments when necessary to ensure the accuracy of your citations.

Managing references with Zotero

Installing Zotero

To install Zotero for optimal use, install the following pieces of software.

  1. Zotero Connector: Embed Zotero in your browser by installing the browser extension (Zotero button in the upper right corner of your browser).
  2. Zotero 6 for Windows: Install Zotero as a separate, browser-independent application on your PC (Windows/Mac/Linux).

If you wish to manage your local Zotero library online (and work independently on any PC), follow these additional steps:

  • Create a Zotero-account after downloading the software.
  • In your local Zotero library, go to 'Edit -> Preferences -> Sync' (Windows/Linux) or 'Zotero -> Preferences -> Sync' (Mac), and log in. Zotero will automatically synchronize your local Zotero library with your online Zotero library.

For a quick start, consult the Quick Start Guide. You can also watch the following video (created by the Laurier Library) explaining the key features of Zotero in just 4 minutes.

The Zotero website provides a more extensive manual and links to various user-created, unofficial videotutorials.

Brief overview of the main features

Storing References

Click on the Zotero Connector icon located to the right of your browser's address bar. (Please note that this icon will only be available if Zotero can read references on the webpage.) If the page contains multiple references, the icon will appear as a folder:

Zotero folder
If the page displays only one reference, the Zotero icon changes from a folder icon to an icon representing the type of item (a book, an article, YouTube video, etc.):

Zotero single result
Not only will the desired references be added to your Zotero library, but the linked PDFs will also be automatically attached when saving items. If desired, you can also include a link to the file.

Organizing References

Move your reference(s) from your main folder (My Library) to the desired subfolder in your Zotero library. Tip: Sort your main library by date added.

Organizing References using Tags

You can add tags to your items:

Zotero tags
Note: When downloading certain references, their tags may be automatically included. You can disable this option in your Zotero Preferences.

Sharing References

If you are working collaboratively on a project with multiple people, it can be useful to share your references. This can be done easily by creating a group. Do not forget to synchronize to see the latest publications from the group.

Citing References

Drag and drop your references into a word processor (e.g., Word) and/or automatically generate a bibliography.
After installing Zotero, a Word plugin will appear automatically in Word:

Zotero plugin in Word

If you cannot find Zotero in the navigation bar above, you can install the plugin in your local Zotero library through Edit -> Preferences -> Cite -> Word Processors.

Exporting References

You can export your entire library, a folder, or an individual item. More information can be found here.

Choosing the Desired Citation Style

In your Preferences (via Edit -> Preferences), you can select one of the many available citation styles under the Cite -> Styles tab. Zotero supports most standard citation styles.

Managing references with Mendeley

Mendeley is both a web application and a stand-alone application (Mendeley Reference Manager for Desktop). You can create an account on the website and optionally download the software. It is completely free and works with all major browsers, including a mobile application.

Your local Mendeley library is automatically synchronized with your online library, allowing you to work independently of your PC.

For a quick start, you can watch the following video that provides an overview of the main features of Mendeley in just 2 minutes.

For a more detailed guide, you can find it on the Mendeley website.

Please note that if you are still using the old Mendeley Desktop, it is recommended to upgrade to the new Mendeley Reference Manager. More information on how to do this can be found on the Mendeley website.

Brief overview of the main features

Storing references

Install the web importer and easily add references to Mendeley. The web importer is compatible with all popular browsers.

Mendeley web importer plugin

Organizing references

Drag your reference(s) from your main folder (All References) to the desired subfolder (under Collections) in your Mendeley library. More information can be found here. Tip: Sort your main library by date added.

Sharing references

With Mendeley, you can also share your references with others. The web application is designed as a social networking site that allows you to connect with people who share similar interests. To share references, create a group. More information can be found on the Mendeley website.

Citing references

Download Mendeley Cite and use it in Word to cite references. A guide can be found here.

Exporting references

More information on how to export your references can be found here.

Making notes and highlighting text

You can make notes on (sections of) your references and highlight text in uploaded PDF documents. You can collect notes and highlights in your Notebook. More information can be found here.

Managing references with EndNote

Installing EndNote

To make the most of EndNote, you need to install the following two components:

  • EndNote (desktop) = UHasselt provides a license, allowing both staff and students to download this application for free via the UHasselt software page. Refer to the knowledge clip 'installeren Endnote' (mp4 | Dutch).
  • EndNote online = a free web application. You can log in using an existing Web of Science account or create a new account (see:

If you wish to manage your local EndNote library online (thus working independently of your PC): After downloading EndNote (desktop), create an EndNote Web account. Then, go to EndNote (desktop) and follow the instructions in this clip. EndNote will automatically synchronize your local EndNote library with your online EndNote library.

To get started quickly, create a Library first. How to do this is explained in the video below, which also highlights the main functionalities of EndNote desktop in just 7 minutes:

You can find a complete guide for this application here. Additionally, the EndNote website offers a wide range of video tutorials.

Brief overview of the main features

Storing References

There are various options available to store references:

  • When you find an article in a database, you sometimes have the option to save the citation directly to EndNote (online).
    Here are some examples:
    - Web of Science (instructions video for Windows)
    - PubMed (instructions video for Windows)
  • New Reference (instructions video for Windows): manually add your own reference.
  • Import References (instructions video for Windows): import one or multiple references from a text file on your computer --> ! This option is relevant for databases where you cannot save references directly to EndNote but need to save them in a separate file and then import them into EndNote.
  • Online search (instructions video for Windows): use the online search option in EndNote desktop.

Organizing References

  • Create group (instructions video for Windows): manage your own folders.
  • Find Duplicates (instructions video for Windows): deduplicate identical references.

Sharing References

If you are working collaboratively on an assignment with multiple people, it can be useful to share your references. This can easily be done through the Share option:

  • Share group (instructions video for Windows): share your folders.
  • Share library (instructions video for Windows): share your entire EndNote library.

Citing References

  1. Cite While You Write Plugin
    After installing this plugin, you can cite references, choose a reference style, and generate a bibliography in Word:
    - Citing one reference (instructions video for Windows)
    - Citing multiple references (instructions video for Windows)
    [Note: If you encounter the "Cannot Edit Range" error when trying to use EndNote tools in Word, it is likely due to the installation of the Mendeley plugin in Word. Here are instructions on how to resolve this.]
  2. Format Paper (instructions video for Windows)
    A tool to create formatted text references and an accompanying bibliography in an RTF (Rich Text Format) document.

Exporting References

  1. EndNote Desktop: See the following tutorial (with instructions for Windows).
  2. EndNote online: Under Format, you have two options:
    - Bibliography: Save, email, or print (groups of) references in a specific reference style.
    - Export References: Save, email, or print (groups of) references in a specific format.

Choosing the desired reference style

You can change the displayed reference style by selecting the desired style from the dropdown menu next to any reference:

You can also choose a different reference style by going to Tools -> Output Styles. EndNote supports most standard reference style formats.

Endnote select citation styles

Managing references with Juris-M

General reference managers often struggle with supporting legal references. The V&A reference style ('Verwijzingen en Afkortingen'), which is considered the official citation style for legal texts in Flanders, is not a standard reference style offered in Mendeley, Zotero, or Endnote.

To address this issue, Juris-M provides a solution. Juris-M is a variant of Zotero (a free and open-source software package) with additional functionality for storing and citing legal and multilingual references.


  1. Go to
  2. Download and install the Juris-M Client Installer (Windows).
    Note that the Installer for Windows is currently 'unsigned.' On UHasselt laptops, you will need to take extra steps to make the application work. Click on the link 'More info' and then click on the button 'Run anyway.'
    Proceed with the Juris-M Standalone Setup Wizard (approximately one and a half minutes).
    The V&A reference style and the list of abbreviations for journals and courts will be automatically added. Manual installation is no longer necessary.
  3. Install the Juris-M Connector (for Google Chrome). This is a browser plugin that allows you to upload references to your reference manager with a single click.
    Juris-M uses translators, which are pieces of code that enable the connector to recognize the database or site you are visiting and know which metadata should be retrieved and filled in Juris-M. As not all databases are supported yet, especially Belgian ones, you can find a list of integrated translators on this site:
    For Ejustice en HUDOC (EHRM), separate, not yet integrated translators are available. Add the files from the links above to the corresponding folder (C:\Users<user name>\Juris-M\translators) by right-clicking on the links and saving the files.
    If no translators are available yet or if you are working with an analog source, you will need to switch to manual upload.

How to use?


  • Check the Juris-M settings (Edit --> Preferences)
    Tab General
    - Do you want to automatically save a snapshot when creating items from web pages?
    - Do you want to automatically include PDFs when saving items?
    Tab Export
    - Select your default citation style: Verwijzingen en Afkortingen (Belgium)
  • Pay attention to folder management (e.g., create one folder per paper).
  • Make sure you are in the correct folder within Juris-M before adding references.

Manually adjusting references

  • If the browser plugin ('Juris-M connector') fails to automatically extract the correct bibliographic data, you will need to add or optimize this data manually. The data you need to input will vary depending on the item you want to describe:
    - Legislation --> item type: Statute
    - Case law --> item type: Case
    - Jurisprudence --> item type: Journal article OR Book chapter OR Book OR...

Adding citations in a Word document

  • Ensure that the Microsoft Word plugin is installed. Check Preferences --> Edit --> Cite --> Word Processors. In the ribbon at the top of the Word application, you will find the menu item 'Zotero' (even if you are using Juris-M, it will show as Zotero).
  • To add a reference, click on 'Add/Edit Citation'. If this is the first reference in your document, you will see a dialog box where you need to choose the citation style. Select 'Verwijzingen en Afkortingen (Belgium)' + 'Display Citations as Footnotes'.
  • You can search for a reference using the red search bar OR use the green 'M'  (classic view) to open your Juris-M library.

Adding a bibliography in a Word document

  • If you want to include a bibliography of all the references mentioned in the document (and linked with Juris-M), click on 'Add/Edit Bibliography'.