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RefWorks: Old version of RefWorks

RefWorks is a bibliographic citation management tool. This guide provides help using RefWorks.

RefWorks was recently revamped and has a totally new interface.  If you're a long-time user who prefers to use the older version, you can do so until January 2018, when Legacy RefWorks is expected to be retired.

Contents of this page:

What is RefWorks? 

It's an online citation management tool for saving and organizing references.  NYU Libraries has a subscription to RefWorks that covers all NYU community members.   With RefWorks, you can:

  • Export references to RefWorks as you search catalogs and databases
  • Organize your references using folders and tags
  • Format bibliographies according to chosen style (MLA, APA, etc.)
  • Share your RefWorks folders with users inside and outside of NYU

To learn more about RefWorks:

For information about other citation management tools like Zotero and EndNote, go here.

Adding References

Adding References from BobCat

You can export references to RefWorks directly from your search results in BobCat.

  1. Click on the Send/Share link for any item.
  2. From the pull-down menu, select RefWorks.
  3. if you are already signed into your RefWorks account, the import will automatically begin. If you are not signed into RefWorks, you will be directed to the RefWorks login page; after you log in the import will automatically begin.
  4. When the import is complete, your records will appear in your references view and will be placed in the Last Imported folder by default.  The Last Imported folder icon will display alongside the reference.

Exporting References from an Article Database

Many of the article databases available via NYU Libraries allow you to export citations directly to RefWorks. Exporting from each database will be slightly different, but you can structure your approach using the following steps:

  1. Under the save or export function within the article database, select or click on the save to RefWorks option.
  2. If you are already signed into your RefWorks account, the import will automatically begin. If you are not signed into RefWorks, you will be directed to the RefWorks login page; after you log in the import will automatically begin.
  3. When the import is complete, your records will appear in your references view and will be placed in the Last Imported folder by default.  The Last Imported folder icon will display alongside the reference.

Note: Always review your references for accuracy after each import.

Direct export to RefWorks is available from the following database services: ABC-CLIO, BioMed Central, BioOne, CSA, Engineering Village 2, EBSCOHost, NISC, Project Muse, OCLC, OVID, ProQuest, Scopus, SFX, H.W. Wilson, and Congressional Quarterly.


Adding References Manually

  1. Log in to your RefWorks account.
  2. From the References tab, click on the New References button.
  3. Select an appropriate bibliographic output style (e.g. APA, MLA, Chicago) from the pulldown menu at the top of the New Reference window.
  4. Under Ref Type, designate the type of reference you are entering (e.g. journal, book, dissertation).
  5. Enter citation information in the fields provided. By default, it will only display those fields required by the citation style you have selected. If you'd like to add additional information to your citation, you can click on the Additional Fields area.
  6. Click Save References when your citation information is complete.

Adding BobCat catalog references from within RefWorks

You can search BobCat (NYU Libraries online catalog) directly from RefWorks. This is a quick way to add references to materials found in BobCat. 
From the search menu select online catalog or database

  1. Choose NYU / BobCat from the drop down list (it should be the first item listed)
  2. Perform a search using Quick or Advanced search
  3. Search results will appear in a new window. Use the check boxes beside each citation you'd like to import (or if you'd like to import all references on the page, make sure the radio button All in list is selected.
  4. Once you've chosen which references to import, choose your appropriate folder.
  5. Your citations have now been added to your RefWorks database, both in the folder you've selected, as well as in the "last imported folder" (all new references automatically get added to the default "last imported" folder) When you next log into RefWorks these citations will be stored in the folder you've selected for them.

NOTE: You can also add journal article citations by searching some of our databases from within the RefWorks interface. However, we have hundreds of databases, and most are not available from RefWorks. Most databases provide the option of exporting your references to RefWorks, so for database searching, it's easiest from within the database.


Setting up an RSS Feed in RefWorks to Add References

RefWorks allows you to subscribe to RSS feeds* and read them through your RefWorks account. You can add specific Bobst Library e-Journal table of contents as feeds, so you can get up-to-date information on articles recently published. When you subscribe to the RSS Feed of a journal, any new articles that appear can be automatically added to your RefWorks Library.

  1. To find the RSS Feed URL, go to the homepage of a journal and see if they have an RSS subscription service, or use Ulrich's Periodical Database to find journals in your field that include RSS. (find articles via databases>databases by title>Ulrich's>connect); you can also see a list of journal services that provide RSS feeds by going to our Alerting Services page.
  2. Copy the URL that appears in your browser's location bar
  3. Open RefWorks and under Search , select RSS Feed
  4. Paste the Journal feed URL in the RSS Feed URL box
  5. Every time a new issue is published, updated citations will automatically be added to your feed.
  6. To view your feeds, from the Search menu, select RSS Feed and click on any feed link.
*An RSS Feed is a URL that provides automatic notification of frequently updated information. 

Adding References from PubMed to Refworks

  1. In PubMed, perform a search and mark the references you want to export; use the dropdown menu to Send to “Clipboard,” Choose destination, Clipboard, click ADD to Clipboard.
  2. When you are finished with your search session, click on items you have saved in "Clipboard" (upper right of screen) ;
  3. Once you are in Clipboard,  click "Send to" in upper right of screen and in drop-down menu, select “Citation Manager.” 
  4. Then click on Create File. An ".nbib" file will be saved in your Downloads.
  5. NOW, open a new browser window and Log in to RefWorks with your id and password.
  6. Click on References in the top toolbar and select Import.
  7. Select NLM PubMed as the filter; select PubMed as the database
  8. Browse to find the ".nbib"  file you saved to your computer (look in Downloads)
  9. Click Import

Your PubMed records should appear in the Refworks "Last Imported" Folder. (Remember to move them into an assigned folder before you do your next import)

 

Managing References

Sorting References

  1. Go to References tab.
  2. Using the Sort by pull-down menu, choose to view references by an assortment of database fields, e.g. Author, Title, Publication year, reference creation date, etc.
  3. OR, if you'd like to view all references in a specific folder, click on the Folders tab and click on the folder you would like to view.

Viewing References

There are several different ways to display your list of references. To switch between display options when viewing All References (from the Reference tab) or references within a folder, select an output style from the Change View pull down menu.

Options available:

  • Standard View (includes Author, Year, Title)
  • One Line/Cite View
  • Full View (includes all fields)

Using Folders to Organize References

Creating Folders

You can create as many folders as you'd like. To create a folder:

  1. Click on the New Folder icon at the top of the page.
  2. Name your folder
  3. Your folder will now appear when you mouseover the folder icon.

Putting References into Folders

References can be assigned to multiple folders.

  1. Use the Search box (upper right hand corner) to search for references you would like to add. Or you can choose references from the default view which shows your complete list of references.
  2. Mark desired references from the search results page, then click the Folder Icon.  
  3. Select folder that you would like to add your references to.

Note: Make sure to allow pop-ups in your browser while using RefWorks.


Globally Editing References

The Global Edit feature is particularly useful for adding information to records imported from online databases missing key fields necessary for a specific bibliographic output style.

  1. From References tab, select the references you would like to edit or use the folder tab to access a folder of references. You can also select reference to edit globally from a list of search results.
  2. Select the references you wish to edit.
  3. Click on the Global Edit icon.
  4. You can Add, Delete, Move, or Replace data. Click on the appropriate action
  5. Type in the data or make the change that you want to the field in the Change Field to: box.
  6. Select the appropriate option for handling the field:
    • Append to Existing Data
    • Overwrite Existing Data (what is currently in the field will be deleted)
    • Leave Existing Data Alone (skips over records that already contain data in the chosen field
  7. Click Add Data

In the Folders menu of every NYU RefWorks account there is an option to Share Folders. When you share a folder, you get a unique URL to that folder which you can share with anyone who has web access. Outside users will have READ ONLY access to the database, but will be able to sort, search and export citations in a wide variety of output styles (MLA, APA, etc.)

To share a folder:

  1. Click on the Share tab
  2. You'll see a list of your folders. To share a folder, click on the folder icon.
  3. You'll then be given a popup menu with options for sharing your folder.  The URL for sharing will be at the top of the page.
  4. Options for sharing include:
    • Allow others to comment on references
    • Allow others to export and print references
    • Allow others to create an RSS feed of the references
    • And more...
  5. Once you've made your selections, click on Save
  6. You can then email the URL to your colleagues
  7. Folders that are shared folders appear with a folder icon with the globe.

Bibliographies & Citations

Creating a Bibliography from a List of References

  1. Click the Create Bibliography button
  2. Choose the Output style you wish to use from the drop down list.
  3. Select Format a Bibliography from a List of References.
  4. Choose the file type you'd like to create (HTML, Word, etc.).
  5. Choose which references to include (Either All, those stored to My List, or the citations from a particular folder in your database).
  6. Click the Create Bibliography button at the bottom of the page.
  7. The formatted bibliography should appear in a few seconds.
  8. Proofread the bibliography for any errors.

Using Write-N-Cite

As you write, you can generate in-text citations and bibliographies from your database of references by using Write-N-Cite.In order to use this feature, you must first download the Write-N-Cite utility from the Tools pull-down menu. The utility is compatible with Windows and Macintosh platforms.

Creating in-text citations with Write-N-Cite

  1. Open a new blank document in Microsoft Word.
  2. Launch Write-N-Cite.
  3. Position the cursor in your Microsoft Word document where the reference should be inserted; click Cite next to the appropriate reference in the RefWorks window.
  4. Save your Microsoft Word document when finished.

Creating a bibliography with Write-N-Cite

  1. Launch Write-N-Cite.
  2. Click on Bibliography.
  3. Select the appropriate output style.
  4. Click on Create Bibliography.
  5. A new window will open with the re-formatted Microsoft Word document containing the bibliography.
  6. Save your Microsoft Word document.

Using One Line/Cite View:

  1. Open your document in Microsoft Word.
  2. Position the cursor where the reference should be inserted within your Word document. (If you want the citation to appear in a footnote or endnote, first create the footnote/endnote number in your word-processing program then place your cursor just to the right of the number.)
  3. In RefWorks, click on the curly brackets icon alongside the reference you would like to cite.
  4. A Citation Viewer window will popup;  click on select to select the reference.
  5. Paste the citation holder into your word document. The citation place holder will look something like this: {{15 Aero,Rita;}}
  6. Click on Clear in Citation Viewer before creating your next citation.
  7. Save your Microsoft Word document.

NOTE: Some citation styles require that a specific page be included in an in-text citation or that the author name be left out of the citation if the name is included in the text. RefWorks cannot determine a specific page number for a reference or know when an author name is in the text. You can, however, manually instruct the program to exclude or include certain items in the citation through the use of in-text switches. Visit the RefWorks guide to Modifying an In-Text Citation or Footnote for further information about this process.

Creating and formatting a paper:

  1. In RefWorks, click on the Create Bibliography button.
  2. Choose the appropriate Output Style from the list and select Format Paper and Bibliography.
  3. Under Document to Format, browse to the file for your paper. NOTE: Your paper must be saved as a .doc, .docx, .odt or .rtf file in order for RefWorks to be able to read and format it.
  4. Click Create Bibliography. RefWorks creates a new document formatted in the selected style followed by a bibliography
  5. Follow your browser's instructions for viewing the file and be sure to save the document before closing. Your original document remains the same as it was before you formatted it. NOTE: If you need to revise your document, add more references, etc., be sure to do so in the original document (not the Final document).
  6. Check your bibliography for accuracy.

Working Offline to Manually Create In-Text Citations and Bibliographies

  1. Log in to your RefWorks account.
  2. Select References, Export.
  3. Select All References, My List or a Folder of references to export.
  4. Select Citation List as the Export Format.
  5. Click Export; a new window will open with a citation list. Save or print this list.
  6. Log-out of RefWorks.
  7. Select the spot in your paper where you want to insert citations.
  8. Enter an in-text citation placeholder by using two open curly brackets {{ followed by a reference ID number followed by two close curly brackets }}. For example: {{34}} for Ref ID number 34.
  9. Save your paper when finished.
  10. To format your bibliography, log in to RefWorks.
  11. Select Bibliography from the toolbar.
  12. Select the desired output style.
  13. Browse to find your paper.
  14. Click Create Bibliography.

Instructions adapted from RefWorks.


Creating your own Output Style

  1. Go to: Bibliography, and select Output Style Editor from the drop down.
  2. Choose an output style you want to modify and make your own
  3. Rename output style in name field
  4. Select view to make any changes to the output style you’ve re-named
  5. Save your changes
  6. Your new style will now appear in the Style drop-down (in red lettering) from Create under the Bibliography tab. Only you will see this style in your personal account.

Sharing

Sharing Folders with Other Users

In the Folders menu of every NYU RefWorks account there is an option to Share Folders. When you share a folder, you get a unique URL to that folder which you can share with anyone who has web access. Outside users will have READ ONLY access to the database, but will be able to sort, search and export citations in a wide variety of output styles (MLA, APA, etc.)

To share a folder:

  1. Click on the Share tab
  2. You'll see a list of your folders. To share a folder, click on the folder icon.
  3. You'll then be given a popup menu with options for sharing your folder.  The URL for sharing will be at the top of the page.
  4. Give your shared folder a title
  5. Options for sharing include:
    • Allow others to comment on references
    • Allow others to export and print references
    • Allow others to create an RSS feed of the references
    • And more...
  6. Once you've made your selections, click on Save
  7. You can then email the URL to your colleagues by clicking on the envelope icon from the Share tab display.
  8. Folders that are shared folders appear with a folder icon with the globe.

HINT: You can also click on the Statistics button from the Share tab area to see how many times people have viewed the shared folder.


Creating and Sharing RSS Feeds of Your References

You can create an RSS feed of your folder or even your entire RefWorks database.

Here's how to do it:

  1. Click on the Share tab
  2. You'll see a list of your folders. To share a folder, click on the folder icon.
  3. You'll then be given a popup menu with options for sharing your folder. 
  4. Give your shared folder a title.
  5. Within options, you'll see the option to Show RSS feed with a menu of options. Choose the number of items you'd like to display.
  6. From the Share tab, click on the envelope to email the people you intend to share your references with.  When they click on the provided link, they'll be taken to a RefShare page displaying the references in your folder. An RSS icon will display in the upper right hand corner which can then be used with the recipient's choice of feed readers.

Storing Files

Storing Files in RefWorks

Users can add information (up to 5GB per user) to their references, as you would attach a file to your email. Attachment formats include:

  • BMP, TIF, JPG, PNG, GIF, PDF
  • Word, Excel Powerpoint

To attach objects to your reference: 

  1. Select Edit reference within an existing within an existing record
  2. Click on Browse and fnd the image to upload
  3. Select Add Attachment

Multiple images can be attached to the same bibliographic reference. There is a 20 MB limit per attachment.

The Group Code is:

RWNewYorkU (case-sensitive)

When off campus, you may sometimes be prompted for the above Group Code (which is also in the email you received from RefWorks confirming the creation of your account).