How-To: Manage Citations in Word 2011

One of the advantages Word 2011 (s aapl) has over Pages ’09 (s aapl) is its stellar, built-in citation management; Pages’ integration is reliant on third-party tools. Word 2011 has its bibliographic tools baked right in. You’ll find them under Citations and References in the Document Elements section of the ribbon. Want to learn how to use them? We’ve got you covered.

A few things about references to get out of the way: Currently, most third-party citation software does not work with Word 2011. Luckily, Word’s citation tools are fairly good on their own. However, if you already have an extensive library in one of those apps, you’re going to be out of luck until they get upgraded.

Also, remember that to be able to keep editing the citations and bibliography after you’ve saved, you’ll need to make sure you’ve saved the document in .docx format, and not as a .doc.

Managing Citations

  1. To manage your citations, click on the Manage button in the ribbon and click the + button in the lower left-hand corner of the window. This will bring up the Create New Source dialog box.
  2. Fill it in with all the relevant information.
  3. After you enter the relevant info, the citation will appear in the document, and in the citation list in the “Manage” dialog box.
  4. To edit the page range of the citation, click on the arrow to the right of the citation, choose Edit this Citation and enter the page number.
    Choose "Edit This Citation"
    Enter in the page range

    Updated Citation


Once you’ve got your citations in, it’s time to build the bibliography.

  1. To create a bibliography, choose Bibliography from the Document Elements section of the ribbon and choose which type of bibliography you want to insert. Note: You’re probably going to need to insert a page break if you’re working within MLA requirements, as I most often am.
  2. The bibliography is now in the document as an object. If you insert more references, click the arrow next to it and choose Update Citations and Bibliography.
    In-place Citation

    How to Update Citation

Final Words

Citation management in Word 2011 is largely unchanged from Word 2008; the only big difference is you now invoke it from the ribbon. While citations are included in Word, there are advantages to using a third-party tool, like EndNote, but until it gets a compatibility update, doing your bibliographic work right in Word is probably your best bet.

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