Skip to Main Content


Basic guide for RefWorks to assist NBL reference and instruction services.

Building your RefWorks Library

There are many ways to add references to RefWorks.

1. Direct Export: bringing over records with one click from

a. databases 
b. discovery services, such as QuickSearch

2. Manually: adding a citation by

a. typing in the reference information in a form 
b. dragging and dropping a file (a large blue circle will appear to direct you)
c. uploading an existing file from your computer

3. MyResearch @ProQuest can be synced with your RefWorks account for immediate export.

Adding PDFs to Already Imported References

1. Click on the reference to open the reference editor.
2. Click on the edit icon (little pencil) in the upper-right-hand corner.
3. Drag the PDF to the reference editor OR click on the link to pull up the file selector box and upload the PDF.


Dragging and dropping one or more files is an easy way to add documents to your RefWorks Library. RefWorks will upload the files and extract any metadata. 


Click the Add (+) icon, then click Upload Document to browse and search your computer for your file.
RefWorks will begin uploading the file and extracting any metadata in your Recent area.
Once the document has been analyzed and uploaded, you can then select the reference and add or edit the metadata.


With multiple files, RefWorks will create a separate reference for each document. Slightly minimize your RefWorks screen and select the documents you want to bring into RefWorks.  
Drag the documents into the main viewing area. You'll see a circle display for you to drag the documents into.
Once the document has been analyzed and uploaded, you can then select the reference and add or edit the metadata.

Direct Export from New PubMed

Collect citations in PubMed

  1. Run a search in PubMed. Select articles you want to import to RefWorks by checking the box next to the titles.
  2. Click Send To and choose the Clipboard, NOT the Citation Manager.
  3. Do this several times. PubMed will keep your Clipboard results for 8 hours.

Send citations from PubMed to RefWorks by saving them to a PubMed file

  1. Click on the Clipboard link under the search box.  
  2. Click Save and choose PubMed from the Format pulldown menu, then click Create File.
  3. Your file will be saved in your Downloads file folder as pubmed-12345678-set.txt, and/or as a recently downloaded file in the grey line at the bottom of your screen. This format is readable by RefWorks.

Import citations into RefWorks

  1. Open RefWorks, and create a folder for your collection.
  2. Click the + Add button at the top left and choose Import References.
  3. Use the Import from a file field  to drag and drop the pubmed file from your Downloads folder.
  4. Citations will automatically be added to your Last Imported Folder in RefWorks.
  5. Move the records from Last Imported to your new folder.

Direct Export from QuickSearch


  1. Click on the title to open the record.
  2. Choose the RefWorks export option.
  3. Log into your RefWorks account to complete the export. First-time users: choose New RefWorks.


  1. Select references from your search results and add them to your favorites.
  2. Click My Favorites to view your selected items.
  3. Select the items you wish to export.
  4. Click three dots on the toolbar ...  to open "Push to" actions.
  5. Choose the RefWorks export option.
  6. Login to your RefWorks account to complete the export. First-time users: choose New RefWorks.

Adding References Manually

  1. Click on the Add a Reference icon (plus sign icon in top toolbar) > Select Create New Reference.
  2. Fill out form as appropriate (multiple Reference Types are available in the pulldown Ref Type).
  3. Click Save.
  4. You can add additional fields using the Add more fields drop down box at the bottom of the page.

Direct Export from Popular Databases

EBSCO: Academic Search Premier, Business Source Premier, ERIC, etc.

  1. Select items by clicking Add to Folder next to citations.
  2. Select Folder (top right corner).
  3. Click Select All, then Export (far right).
  4. Select Direct Export to RefWorks and click Save.

Medline, PsychInfo, and other Ovid databases 

  1. Select item by checking adjacent box.
  2. Click Export (top of results).
  3. Under Export To select RefWorks & click Export Citations.

Proquest Databases 

  1. Select items by clicking adjacent boxes.
  2. Select Save then select RefWorks.


  1. Mark boxes next to citations.
  2. Click Export button, then select Refworks and Export.

Web of Science

  1. Select items by clicking adjacent boxes.
  2. Select Send to RefWorks from drag down list at top of results.

VIDEO: Exporting references to RefWorks

VIDEO: Editing References


© , Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Rutgers is an equal access/equal opportunity institution. Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to direct suggestions, comments, or complaints concerning any accessibility issues with Rutgers websites to or complete the Report Accessibility Barrier / Provide Feedback form.