Watch this tutorial to discover more about the key features of Citavi

Citavi is a multi-purpose reference management software tool which provides users with a range of features for arranging and recording references. Moreover, Citavi offers users specialist features such as knowledge organization and task planning tools and solutions. It also supports users throughout the research process, from the academic writing process itself right through to publication.

With Citavi, you can:

  • search databases and library catalogs
  • analyze and evaluate texts
  • save quotations, ideas and comments
  • create draft outlines
  • plan and monitor the progress of your own work
  • work collaboratively on projects and monitor their progress.



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University Site License

The University Library provides the RWTH Aachen University community (students and staff) with free access to Citavi through a university site license.

The site license allows users to install and use Citavi on two computers (one at home and one in the workplace) or on one computer and a USB flash drive.

The site license for Citavi may only be used for the duration of your studies or your employment contract at RWTH Aachen University. Citavi automatically returns to the starter edition (Citavi Free) after this license has expired, which means that the memory capacity returns to 100 references per project. However, references which have already been entered are retained.


System Requirements

Citavi 5 the new version of the reference management program Citavi has been available to download since the beginning of May 2015. Citavi 5 8and Citavi 4) runs on Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows Vista. Windows XP is no longer supported.

Projects begun with Citavi 4 can be opened with Citavi 5 without any problems. However, it is not possible to use a Citavi 5 project with Citavi 4.

Mac and Linux
Citavi is solely a Windows program. Mac users are recommended to use the campus licensed reference management program EndNote or the free software Zotero. Zotero also runs on the Linux operating system.

Word Processing Programs
Citavi works with all word processing programs that know RTF format. LaTex users can use cross-sections for TeX editors. A step-by-step instruction is provided and available for download at the bottom of this page.


Downloading and Installing Citavi 5

  1. Download and install Citavi Free onto your computer or laptop

Technical information and support for downloading Citavi

2. Requesting your personal license key

  1. Go to (may take a while to load)
  2. Log in with your University Account (Shibboleth).
  3. Copy your licence details.
  4. Start Citavi and click "Lizenzdaten eingeben". By entering your license key Citavi Free (max. 100 references per project) will be converted into Citavi (unlimited number of references)..

The license key gives you the right to useCitavi on all your Computers

University Staff at UniKlinik RWTH Aachen
UniKlinik RWTH Aachen staff who only possess an @ukaachen email address can request a license key via

  1. Entering the license key
    By entering your license key (Citavi --> Help --> License), Citavi Free (max. 100 references per project) will be converted into Citavi (unlimited number of references).
  2. Importing RWTH special settings files (recommended)
    Once you have imported the RWTH special settings files, you can search selected RWTH catalogs and databases. Importing special settings files is only possible with the university site license version of Citavi. Instructions on how to import special settings can be found in the Downloads section at the bottom of this page.