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Alphabetize a List and Create a Neat Bibliography with This Handy & Free Online Alphabetizer

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Putting the references list in order is the bane of researchers and essay writers since there are always some last-minute additions, rearrangements, and unattributed quotes for which you must add sources. Luckily, the hectic final dash towards the submission deadline can be made a bit easier with this alphabetizer list ordering tool. As simple as it is, it has a gazillion of possible uses. Let’s explore together!

When You May Need Automatic Alphabetizer

Of course, when your assignment says to present your sources in alphabetical order, it’s a no-brainer you need an alphabetizer to make a neatly numbered list with just a click of a button. This may be useful for your essay references to ensure the formatting follows the APA guidelines. However, this is not the only way to use this tool!

  • Put your lists in order

Apply alphabetizer to the library’s to-borrow list to make your catalog searches more systemic and effective. Alphabetize your study group list to distribute work and assign tasks. In fact, any list can benefit from being alphabetized: from grocery shopping to wishlist to playlist!

  • Analyze your references

Extract only last names from your list with the “Alphabetize by Last Name” option to analyze how many books by each author you’ve used or which author is the most cited in all your works (you might want to compile a master list first by copying references from all of your papers for this semester, for a particular subject, etc.)

  • Perform textual analysis

Find out which words appear most often at the start of the paragraph/sentences or overall in your text by making your entire essay into an alphabetical list. This can provide valuable insight into your style and open your eyes to some linguistic preferences you never knew you had or issues you might want to address.

  • Let the chance decide

Randomize the list to get a random answer if you cannot decide which topic will work the best for your essay, or you need to get a winner for the dorm raffle you’ve organized. Random order can be your coin toss, magic 8 ball, and runic oracle all in one – depending on your input.

How to Use This Alphabetical Order Tool

The alphabetizer tool is intuitive, and you can figure it out without detailed instructions. Still, here is the general idea of how it works:

  1. Copy the text you want to turn into a list (for example, an unordered draft of your bibliography) and paste it into the alphabetizer window.
  2. Select how you want to organize your text and press the corresponding button. The action will be applied automatically; there is no need to press any master button.
  3. The “Sort by” drop-down menu controls how your list is going to be organized: ABC – alphabetical order, XYZ – reverse alphabetical order; Last Name – extracts the last names of the authors from the bibliographic information and presents an alphabetical list of surnames; Random will randomize your content.
  4. In the “List formatted by” drop-down menu, indicate which separators are used to discriminate items on your list – blank space, comma, or semicolon. If you have used some other division marker, let the algorithm know which one by selecting the “Custom separator” and inserting the symbol into the field that appears.
  5. In the “Format the result by” drop-down menu, select which separator you want to be applied for the resulting list – blank space, comma, semicolon, or custom separator (enter the desired symbol into the corresponding field).
  6. There are also “Remove” and “Add” optional features you can select. With a click of a corresponding button, remove HTML elements (from the URL sources), duplicate entries, punctuation, or brackets. Likewise, with the click of a corresponding button, you can add enumeration to your list: numbers, Roman numerals, small letters, or capital letters.

Tips for Using Alphabetical Order Generator Better

Here are some tips to help you avoid frustrating mishaps when the alphabetizer doesn’t seem to do what you expect it to do:

  • Remove numbering before submitting the list

If your list is already numbered, you need to remove the numbers before you can alphabetize it. The alphabetizer sees numbers as legitimate symbols and uses them to guide the ordering process. If you try to alphabetize a numbered list, nothing will happen since the numbers are already in the correct order. You can randomize such a list or reverse its order as usual, even without removing the numbers.

  • Make sure all the elements of your list are separated consistently

Your list must be consistently formatted, with each item on your list separated from other components by the same separator (a space, a period, a comma, a dash, etc.) If some elements are separated in a different way from other elements on the list, the alphabetizer will see them as one entry.

  • Remove formatting for analyzing your text with an alphabetizer

If you want to alphabetize the entire text, you will need to clear the formatting from it, otherwise, the alphabetizer will order it by paragraphs. To remove formatting, you might want to run your text through a program like Notepad or Excel and copy the result from there.

Online Alphabetizer FAQ

If something doesn’t work, look for the answer here:

How can I cancel the action in the alphabetizer online?

If you are unhappy with the result or have clicked the wrong button by mistake, you can undo the last action by clicking the circle arrow icon in the bottom right corner of the alphabetizer window. To clear the window and start afresh, click the trashcan icon in the bottom right corner. This will delete all content from the alphabetizer window.

Can I alphabetize a list in another language?

You can. The tool works for every alphabet available in Unicode and will order the content you insert according to the alphabetical order used in the standard Unicode. However, it will order the content by the standard version first, and only then will it include language-specific letters, symbols with diacritics, etc. For example, if you order French content, you will get the list ranked from A to Z, and after will go the words that start with special symbols like à, â, è, é, ê, î, etc.

Can this alphabetical order generator work with several languages at once?

It can. If you insert a text containing several different languages that use varying scripts, the alphabetizer will order your content following the standard Unicode alphabet order: Latin -> Greek -> Cyrillic -> Hebrew -> Arabic -> etc. Within each alphabet, it will prioritize capital letters.

How can this name alphabetizer find names within the text?

It cannot. As an automatic tool intended primarily for bibliographies, it interprets the first word of each entry as a “last name.” For example, if you try to “Alphabetize by Last Name” a larger text, such as an essay, you will get the list of the first words of each paragraph, which can be used for textual analysis, for example.

Like Our Word Alphabetizer? Check Out Other Free Writing Tools!

If you like automating tedious, time-consuming tasks, you will appreciate other tools EssaysWriter offers. Check out our Title Generator to supercharge your brainstorming sessions, Citation Generator to make sure your bibliography is formatted precisely according to the required style, Grammar Checker to flawlessly proofread and correct your text, and many, many more! Make your writing better and become a better writer with us!