Free Online Tools for Collaboration

Shirley Zhao
Data Science Librarian, NN/LM Training Office

Explore these free online tools that will make collaborating much easier!

Share documents and files via Box

You may already be familiar with Dropbox or Google Drive and the concept is the same for Box. The big difference is that Box is HIPAA and FERPA compliant. Because the University of Utah has partnered with Box for enterprise accounts for faculty, students, and staff, you get 50 GB of storage space, can assign different levels of access to your collaborators, and have access to your files on any device at any time.  Click here to get started.


Write papers together via Authorea

Authorea lets you write in LaTeX, Markdown, HTML, Javascript, and more, and your document becomes a beautiful webpage. You can even have data-driven interactive visualizations embedded in your document! With Git doing version control, you don’t even have to worry about tracking changes. Click here to learn more.


Write systematic reviews together via Covidence

There does exist an easier way of doing systematic reviews, especially for managing the review process without using Excel. Covidence provides a nice working environment for selecting, excluding, and resolving discrepancies. Plus, you can annotate the PDFs and it will auto-populate your Cochrane risk of bias tables without cutting and pasting text. Click here to learn more.

Note, this video has no sound but gives a great inside look at the functionalities.


Collaborate on diagrams and charts via Lucidchart

Have you ever wanted to work on diagrams and charts simultaneously with a collaborator who is miles away? Then check out this program: Lucidchart. It runs in the cloud and has an easy user interface. Click here to learn more.


Organize team projects via Trello

Trello lets you see your project at a glance by having every step laid out in a giant board with lists of cards. Check out this example of meal planning using Trello (video) and click here to learn more.


Do you have a favorite tool? Tell us about it in the comments!

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