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Reference Tools: 1. Saving Citations in RefWorks

Saving Citations in RefWorks

There are several ways to add citations for articles and other resources you discover during your research to RefWorks. As you add citations you will build your RefWorks library.

Here are a few best-practice ways to add citations to RefWorks with steps to get you started on this page:

  1. Adding Citations Manually
  2. Direct Export from Databases
  3. Import from Databases
  4. Upload a PDF from your computer

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Adding Citations Manually

When first starting to use RefWorks, we recommend manually adding a few sources first to understand what metadata fields you need to fill in order to have RefWorks generate the most complete citation for that source. Examples of metadata fields are: author, journal, title, volume, issue, URL, DOI.

  1. Log into your RefWorks account. Click on the + sign icon in the top navigation menu and select "Create New Reference".
    Create Citation
  2. Select the correct "Reference Type" from the drop down.
  3. Input the information for your reference into the fields and click save.
  4. If you need to edit information, click on the reference and then click the pencil icon to edit its metadata. Remember to click save after editing.

Upload a PDF

You can also upload or drag and drop a PDF of an article into the RefWorks browser interface. RefWorks will attempt to read some or all of the metadata from the PDF and populate the metadata fields. Always double-check the metadata fields are complete and accurate, as you are smarter than the automated-intelligence pulling the information from the document. Errors will result in incomplete and inaccurate citations.

To upload a PDF:

  1. Login in to RefWorks
  2. Click the + icon and select "upload document." This will launch your computer's folder system interface will show. 

     
  3. Select the PDF you want to upload.
  4. Choose the folder you want the PDF reference to appear in after upload. If you do not choose a folder it will appear in your "Last Imported" folder.
  5. RefWorks will attempt to pull the metadata from the PDF. When complete a "X documents have been uploaded."
  6. As always, double-check the metadata and upload a copy of the full-text as a PDF if the database did not pull it for you.

Direct Export from Databases

Many databases provide a "direct export" function that allows you to add citations directly to your RefWorks account. It is best practice to export one source at a time and also download the full-text to your computer when possible. To use direct export from a database with an export to RefWorks feature:

  1. Mark the citation in your results list or save them to the folder.
  2. Find and click on the Save/Export/Send to link or icon in the database (these options are labelled differently across databases) and choose the "Direct Export to RefWorks" or "Save to RefWorks" option.
  3. The RefWorks login screen will appear. Login to your RefWorks account. RefWorks will then display the message "Importing references, please wait...", and when finished will display "Import completed - [x] reference(s) imported," and a View Last Imported Folder link. You can then move the citation(s) into a folder of your choice in RefWorks.
  4. Return to the database and download the full-text PDF and save it to your computer
  5. Locate the new reference entry in RefWorks
  6. Select the reference and click the pencil icon to double-check and/or edit the metadata
  7. Attach the PDF to the entry, as it may not have done it for you.
  8. Click "save" to save all of your changes.

**TIP: Always check over the information to ensure that all required citation parts are included and properly formatted. If you see an error, for example, the title may appear in ALL CAPS, use the edit icon to fix it now. This will reduce the chance of errors later when you are creating in-text citations and bibliographies.

Import from Databases

If you are importing citations from databases without a "Direct RefWorks Export" or the "Save to RefWorks" browser tool, you can still download the citations to a file and import manually into RefWorks. There are few more steps than the direct export, but is still much faster and easier than manually adding citations.

  1. Mark the citation(s) in your results list or save them to the folder.
  2. Find and click on the Save/Export/Send to link or icon in the database (these options are labeled differently across databases) and choose the "Citation Manager" or "Other File Formats" option.
  3. Save the file created by the database in a place you easily find it again.
  4. Login in to your RefWorks account and select + >> Import References.
    RefWorks Import Link under References
  5. Drop and drag the file into RefWorks. 
    Import Options
  6. RefWorks will verify the source of the citations; some databases like PubMed have specific format types. If your database isn't listed, simply choose RIS and then click then "import."
    Import Verification
  7. When finished, it will display "Import completed - [x] reference(s) imported," and a View Last Imported Folder link. You can then move the citation(s) into a folder of your choice in RefWorks.
  8. As always, double-check the metadata and upload a copy of the full-text as a PDF if the database did not pull it for you.