Citation preferences in Google Docs research tool

Google has a great research tool built right into its Docs and Slides applications. This means we can cite sources of information from the internet and the research tool will take the hard work of citing information in the citation format we prefer, MLA, APA or Chicago. This citation applies to text and images.

Go ahead and create a document or slide. Don’t forget to give the document a name. In the menu click on “Tools” and select “Research”.




The research tool will appear in a panel on the right side of the document. The research tool is a basic search box. Before starting our search we should select the citation format we need. Click on the triangle below the search box.


We have the option to select the image usage rights and the citation format. The default citation format is set to MLA.


To change the citation format, click the pull down menu and select one of the other formats.


We can also choose the usage rights for images we plan to use in our research. The default setting does not filter images by usage rights. We can change this by clicking the pull down menu and selecting one of the other options. The other option will filter out images that are protected by copyright. This will deliver image results that are in the public domain or in the creative commons.

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