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Library Services


A guide for accessing and using NoodleTools, a citation and note-taking software.

Using NoodleTools

Select “New Project” in the upper right corner to begin.

The "New Project" button is located to the right of the search bar and the "2021-2022" dropdown.

In the first field, give your project a title relating to the assignment or class.

Next, choose the citation style. The options available are MLA, APA, and Chicago Style. You will want to choose the citation style accepted for your class.

For Citation level, select “Advanced”. This will make sure the most citation options are available to you.

Click “Submit”.

Now, you will have different options available on the left sidebar for your project.

“Sources” allows you to add sources/citations to your project.

“Notecards” allows you to take notes and organize your project.

“Attachments” allows you to keep track of the different attachments you may need.

After you choose an option, Sources, Notecards, and Attachments all have a green button in the upper right-hand corner that allows you to add to them.

The left hand side bar is split into rectangular sections that help you navigate your document. These are vertically oriented. The first option is "Sources". The second is "Notecards" which has two smaller sections beneath it to select "Tabletop View" or "Detail View". The next section is "Attachments".

Click on the “New Source” button to add to your sources within NoodleTools.

The "New Source" button is to the right of the search bar in the top right corner of the screen.

First select an option under “Where is it?” indicating where you located the source. In this case we will select “Website”. If citing an ebook or scholarly article, select the “Database” section.When creating a new citation, you are first prompted with "Where is it?". Below this text, is a horizontally oriented bar with different tabs depending on what you're citing. From left to right, the options are: Database, Website, Print or in-hand (both included in same option), Viewed/Heard live (same option), File, app, e-book (one option), or other, which is a dropdown with further choices.

Next, you will want to select an option under “What is it?”. In this case, we will cite a webpage.

On the next page, you will provide information to complete the citation of your source. The information here may vary by source type. In this case, begin by adding the URL, the date of publication, and the most recent date of access.

Below the URL field, is the "Date of Publication" field. This has a month dropdown, then a day dropdown, and a field for entering the 4 digit year. Below this is the "Most recent date of access" option, which is organized the same way.

For the next section, you can add contributors (authors, editors, etc.) as well as a description of the format (if necessary), the title of the webpage, and a spot for an English translation of the title if it is in another language. The article chosen for this example does not have an associated author so this has been left blank.

Underneath the "Contributers" heading is a dropdown to select the role of the contributer. Below this is a set of four field arranged horizontally. The fields in left to right order are: "First name", "Middle name", "Last name or group" (as one field), and "Suffix". There is a trashcan symbol beside this to delete the contributer, and a button below and to the right to add another contributer. There is a divider and then three more fields. The first is "Description of the format (to appear in brackets)", which is a dropdown menu. Use this if what you are citing has an unusual format. The next field is "Web page or document/article title", which has a selectable option next to it for if what you are citing is untitled. The last field is "English translation of document/article title" if the article was in a language other than English.

In the next section, list the name of the website where the article was obtained. In the case of this example, the article comes from the Associated Press. There is an area below this to add annotations. Annotations are typically short and concise evaluations of sources. This area is very helpful if you are asked to write an annotated bibliography.

There is a field underneath "Name of the website" where you can enter the name of the overall website you found your source. This will likely change depending on what type of source you are citing. Below is a box for adding annotations.

Click “Save” in the upper right corner.

The save option is located to the right of the "Quick cite" box.

Based on the information you provided, a citation has been automatically generated for you.

While NoodleTools can format your citations for you, it is important to have a working knowledge of the citation style you are using to check for errors in formatting. If there is a difference in citation preferences between NoodleTools and your professor, it is important to follow your professor’s guidelines.

If you need to edit a citation for any reason, click on the drop down menu on the right of the citation and select “Edit”.

You can pull up the dropdown for editing your citation by clicking the three vertical dots symbol that is found at the end of each citation.

This will bring you to the page from before. Any changes you make will automatically alter the citation once you save. If you notice an error in formatting or wish to make changes directly to the citation, click “Tweak this citation manually” in the right-hand corner.

On the next page, there will be a box titled “Manually-edited citation” where you can make the desired changes.

Below the "Manually-edited citation" box where you can manually cite your source, there is a heading titled "Publication/copyright date of source" with a "Month/season" dropdown, a "day" dropdown, and a field for a four digit year arranged from left to right. There is a field below this for entering the URL.

Click “Save” once you are finished to save your changes.

There are certain citation items that are unique to academic sources. One of the most common is a DOI, an identifier unique to each article in a publication. You can typically find the DOI on the information page for an article within a database. 

You will also need the name of the specific database you are using. 

You can typically find the pages of the article within the journal and the publication details on the information page as well.

Sometimes an academic journal may publish a special issue on a particular topic outside of their normal publication schedule. You will want to enter the details of the special issue in the "Advanced (Periodicals)" section.

Notecards allow you to organize ideas and plan your project. Click on “Notecards” on the left-hand side bar.

The sidebar is vertically oriented. The first option is "Back to My Projects", followed by "Sources", "Notecards", with two subheadings one for Tabletop View and the other for Detail View, next is "Attachments", then "To-Do's", and lastly "Teacher's Links".

Now, select “New Notecard” in the upper right-hand corner.

The "New Notecard" button is located to the right of the searchbar.

Begin by giving the notecard a title and choosing a source to go along with it. In this case, I used the source from the previous example. Tags can also be given to notes to help organize your ideas.

The first field is for the Notecard Title, the second is for the Source, and the third is for Tags.

Next, move to the “Direct quotation” box and enter the quote you would like to use.

Move to the “Paraphase or summary” section to add a summary of the quotation in question.

In the “My Ideas” section, you can add your own thoughts. This is a great way to begin sorting your thoughts and preparing for your own writing.

Click “Save and Close” in the upper right-hand corner to save your notecard.

Notecards can be used as a way to keep track of individual quotations from sources and organize your ideas. Once created, Notecards can be managed in two ways: “Tabletop view” and “Detail view”.

“Tabletop view” allows you to spatially organize your ideas. Several options are available for each Notecard.


The options available from left to right: “Add to Pile”, “Link to a source”, “Add a tag”, “Apply a Cue”, “Apply color”, and then the options from the drop down menu—"Pin Notecard”, “Rename”, or “Delete”.

“Piles” are a way to organize several Notecards together that may be related to each other. For instance, it would be a good way to organize having multiple Notecards about a single topic. The number in the bottom right corner shows how many Notecards are in each pile. The drop down arrow in the top right corner lists the cards that have been added.

Applying colors and tags to Notecards is another great way to organize your Notecards. The searchbar in the top right allows you to search for Notecards based on tags.

“Cues” allow you to flag Notecards based on what type of attention they might need. This is a great way to keep track of the changes you need to make without becoming overwhelmed.

In order, the "Cues" are "Needs further research", "Need Help", "Incomplete", "Original Thinking", "Important", and "Used in paper".

If you need a more in-depth look at your Notecards, the “Detail view” provides more detail.

Notecards under "Detail View" are organized in a two column table. The rows from top to bottom are: Source, Page, Tags, Cues, the Quote, the Summary, your thoughts, and the history of the notecard, meaning the time and date of its creation and last update.

If you have media or files for your project you want to keep on NoodleTools, you can add attachments to your project by selecting “Attachments” in the left-hand sidebar.

Attachments are below the symbol for the Notecard's "Detail View".

Next, select “New File” in the upper right-hand corner.

Afterwards, you will need to locate and upload the content from your device. You can also drag and drop files from your downloads folder.

Below the “Select files from your device” option is a list of supported file types that be uploaded to NoodleTools.

Lastly, once the image or file has been uploaded, there will be a preview. It will likely automatically generate a file name, but this can be changed to the file name of your choice.

When you are done, select “Save” to upload the file to NoodleTools.

On the “My Projects” page, hover over your project and select the plus symbol underneath “Sharing” to share your project with your professor.

Each project is organized from right to left; first the title is listed, then there is a section for the contents--showing the number of sources, notecards, and attachments, respectively--a section for when the project was last updated, and lastly, a section for sharing your project. This is where the plus symbol to share your project is located.

Your teacher will provide you with a Project inbox name that you can use to share the project with them. To the right of “Share with an Inbox”, select “Share”.

Enter the Project inbox name provided by your professor, and add your name in the field below. Then, select “Done”.

The button for "Done" is on the left below the "Enter your name" field. There is a button to "Close" to the right of the "Done" button.

If you need to collaborate with classmates, they can also be added using the “Student Collaboration” window. Select “Add Student”. This will create a drop down menu.

The "Student Collaboration" box is broken down into columns for "User", "Type", and "Contribution".

Enter the student’s Personal ID and choose whether to make them a “Full collaborator” (with the power to edit the project) or a “Peer-reviewer” (who can only view what you’ve already put in the document.

Lastly, you can configure public access to your project.

Select “Configure public access” to bring up a drop down menu.

“Disallow all public access” keeps your project private.

“Public source list” allows your sources to be publicly viewable but not copyable.

“Public source list, copying allowed” allows others to copy sources from your list.

"Allow entire project to be copied" allows attachments and Notecards to be copyable as well.