Stacey Taylor, Information Services Manager, at Monte Sant’Angelo Mercy College, writes this guest post to share her experiences in promoting quality referencing at her school. In this post she explains her application of EasyBib in her International Baccalaureate secondary girls school in Sydney.
cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by Kirstea
Using Easybib – a rationale for choosing a referencing tool
Our school recently changed our school-wide referencing tool.
We have had a school wide referencing system in place for the past 6 or 7 years, we like many other Australian schools were a “Harvard referencing” school and we used a program called citation which was loaded on all the schools computers.
Our change to Easybib came about because of a culmination of many factors;
- Firstly we became a 1:1 Mac school and our citation program wouldn’t work on a Mac
- Most of our online databases only provide citations in APA, MLA and Chicago/Turabian
- We were undertaking IB Diploma Extended Essays and IB MYP Personal Projects, both of which demand a high standard of referencing
We shopped around for a few online referencing tools, looking at BibMe, Noodle Tools and EasyBib. We decided on Easybib and although it is a free product we opted to pay a small fee so that we could get APA referencing as an option for our students, which is similar to our previous Harvard system.
EasyBib is web based and requires a coupon code for students to get the APA option.
We explicitly teach students from Year 7-12 how to use EasyBib to create bibliographies and to create “parentheticals” to use for intext references. We have a universal system across the school in an attempt to standardise and improve the schools overall performance in referencing. In some IB tasks referencing and bibliographies are given marks. As these assessments are marked externally there is a need to get this aspect of the assessment right. Students are given instruction both face to face and via a Jing movie that they can access anytime they need to via Moodle. Teachers are also familarised with the tool via a Jing movie.
Some teachers have not actively practiced creating bibliographies since their own university days.
EasyBib have provided a great trouble shooting service and using Easybib has been simple.
Shortly after our school wide introduction SLAV developed a citation tool that did cater to Harvard referencing, however we where already committed. The flexibility of using a web based system allows flexibility for students using a variety of computers. We have now been using EasyBib for more than a year and are happy with it’s selection.
Our students referencing is improving because of a school wide push to improve.
Read more from Stacey at Librarians are Go.
- EasyBib Comes to the iPhone and iPad (freetech4teachers.com)
- Digging into digital research (heyjude.wordpress.com)
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Very timely Stacey. I’ve just applied for a school trial for Easy Bib for the very reasons you state here. The iphone app appears to let you use the APA formatting for free. Interesting move on their part.
Thanks for the post.