Research Made Easy: Quick Solutions for Related Literature Search and Use of Online Technology in Research

Research Made Easy: Quick Solutions for Related Literature Search and Use of Online Technology in Research

(Presented during the System Research Colloquium and Sharing of Best Practices during the 75th Foundation Anniversary of JBLFMU)

Elisa Vinco-Garcia
Chief Librarian, JBLCF-Bacolod


Engaging with literature is fundamental to the research process, from the initial topic exploration to the final submission of papers, theses, or reports. However, researchers often face difficulties effectively managing the vast amount of literature they gather. Poor citing of reference works, inconsistencies in reference citations, the use of different citation styles in theses and research papers, over-reliance on books or external assistance for citation accuracy, grueling hours spent in creating bibliographies, difficulty in finding exact web page links, and the ever-present issue of plagiarism are among the challenges researchers encounter. This paper addresses these challenges by presenting quick solutions through online technology. It will share best practices adopted by research mentors and introduce various freely available tools to assist researchers in managing references and overcoming writing issues encountered throughout the research journey.


The primary objectives of this article are twofold. Firstly, it aims to share some of the best practices research mentors adopt to assist faculty and students in managing their references effectively. These best practices have successfully improved literature management throughout the research process. Secondly, the article introduces various online technologies that researchers can freely utilize to address writing issues encountered during research. By incorporating these technologies, researchers can streamline their workflows, enhance the quality of their research outputs, and increase their overall productivity.

Experts' Thoughts on the Use of Technology in Academic Writing

Experts recognize the significant impact of technology on writing in the real world. To prepare the next generation for an increasingly competitive global workforce, the integration of technology is crucial (Hughes, 2023). Technology offers a myriad of tools to aid writers, and researchers can search for the ones that best suit their needs (Using Technology to Improve Student Writing Skills, 2019).

Best Practices for Related Literature Search and Use of Online Technology

  1. Subscribing to reputable databases like ProQuest, EBSCOhost, and Philippine E-Journals

Several best practices can simplify the management of literature and improve research efficiency. Introducing free, open-source journals, such as Google Scholar and DOAJ, provides researchers with accessible sources for their writing needs. Subscribing to these databases expands access to available resources.

2. Utilizing Online Reference Management Tools

Online referencing and reference management tools like Zotero and Mendeley help researchers organize their sources, insert citations into documents, and automatically generate references or bibliographies in desired citation styles.

3. Conducting Webinars and Workshops on Citation and References with Students and Faculty

This activity fosters a better understanding of proper citation practices. Mentoring faculty research instructors and researchers in the literature review, citations, and referencing enhances their expertise in these areas.

4.  Integrating Reference Management Software into Library Services and Utilizing Paraphrasing Tools Like Quillbot

These practices have several benefits, including printing or saving references in the correct format, ensuring source credibility, improving research quality, meeting publication requirements, facilitating the work of research teachers, fostering independence in utilizing online tools, addressing grammatical errors, and preventing plagiarism, and maximizing the utilization of library subscriptions and electronic resources.

Producing scholarly outputs is a challenging task that often requires extensive hours of work in the library. However, with the continuing advancement in technology, innovative tools, and readily-accessible sources have been made available online, providing quick and easy solutions to struggling researchers. While some tools may require expensive purchases or subscriptions, there are numerous freely accessible alternatives. As mentors, our role is to guide and support students in locating and utilizing these tools to make research writing much more manageable. By incorporating best practices and leveraging online technology, researchers can enhance their efficiency, improve the quality of their work, and contribute more effectively to the scholarly community. Combining effective literature management and the strategic use of online technology empowers researchers to overcome this.