RefWorks is a reference management software package that enables you to:
- import references from databases or text files
- create references from saved PDF articles
- build up your own database of relevant references
- add correctly formatted citations to word documents
- build a bibliography
RefWorks is a web-based package that can be used from any computer with an internet connection. It is particularly useful for undergraduates and taught-course postgraduates preparing projects and dissertations.
RefWorks is funded by Library Services and is a free service to our users.
Creating an account and logging in
If you are a new user, go to the RefWorks log in page, click Use login from my institution.
Select Imperial College London from the list of options or type this into the search box.
Log in with your College username and password when asked to do so.
You will be taken to the Create Account screen.
You need to enter the following information:
- Your name and College email address
- Your department
- Your status e.g. undergraduate
You are now ready to start using RefWorks!
There are various ways to do this:
- Import using Save to RefWorks
- Direct Export
- Import saved PDFs of articles
- Import references from Imperial College Library Search
- Import a saved file
- Add manually
Further information on all of these import methods is in our Refworks quick guide (pdf).
Write-N-Cite (WNC) is a plug-in which can be downloaded from RefWorks from the Tools menu. All PCs in the Library and those in most departmental clusters have WNC pre-loaded.
To install WNC on your personal computer you must have administrator rights.
Please note that WNC is not compatible with Word for Mac 2016. Mac users can install RefWorks Citation Manager instead.
- Open the Tools menu and select Tools to download the 32 or 64 version as required.
- Make sure that Microsoft Word is not running before installing Write-N-Cite
- Once installation is complete a tab labelled RefWorks will appear in the Microsoft Word ribbon.
- To access your references, select the Log in button on the RefWorks tab, open the Log in from My Institution menu, select Imperial College London and enter your user credentials
- If given the option to sign in to new RefWorks or legacy RefWorks, select new RefWorks
- Syncing your references may take a minute or two
Creating a reference list in your word processing document using Write-N-Cite 4
- Open a document in Microsoft Word and click on the RefWorks tab in the Word ribbon
- If you have not logged into Write-N-Cite select the Log in button on the RefWorks tab, open the Log in from My Institution menu, select Imperial College London and enter your user credentials
- Syncing your references may take a minute or two
- Select your preferred output style from the Style drop down menu. If your preferred style is not listed, click on Select Other Style for more options. If your preferred style is not shown, open your RefWorks account and click Citation View then click on the cog to search for and select your preferred style by clicking Save. In WNC, sync your references and click on the Style menu. Your selected style should now appear in the options.
- Place your cursor where you want to cite a reference within the document and click on the Insert Citation icon in the RefWorks tab. The Insert/Edit Citation box will appear
- Select the citation you wish to insert either by opening the appropriate folder from the Folder tab, or by typing a keyword into the search box in the top right hand corner
- The selected citation will be displayed in your chosen output style in the Preview Citation window. To insert the citation into your Word document, click the OK button
- To insert additional references into a single citation, click the + icon next to the Compose Citation window and select another reference to add to the citation. The order in which references appear in the citation is determined by your output style
- When you’ve added all your references put your cursor where you’d like your bibliography to appear and click on Bibliography Options in the RefWorks tab. Then select Insert Bibliography
If you have added new references to your RefWorks account and want to cite them in a document you will need to click on the Sync My Database button in the RefWorks tab. Syncing your references may a minute or two.
RefWorks Citation Manager (RCM)
RefWorks Citation Manager (RCM) is an app available from the Microsoft Office Store which can be used in Word 2016 and above for Windows or Mac to insert citations and create reference lists.
Creating an RCM password
It is not possible to log into RCM using your College credentials. In order to use RCM you need to set up a password in your RefWorks account.
- Open your RefWorks account, click on your name at the top of screen and select Settings
- A log in box will appear select Log in via my Institution, select Imperial and log in with your College credentials
- Scroll down the page to the Alternate Password section and click on Change Password
- Enter a new password (N.B. this should not be the same as your College password)
Installing Refworks Citation Manager in Word
- Open a new Word document and select the Insert or Add-ins tab
- Click on the Store icon and type RefWorks in the search box
- Select the RefWorks Citation Manager app and click Add
- The RCM app now be available under the My Add-ins menu
- Select RCM from My Add-ins to open the app in a side window
- Log in using your College email address and the RefWorks password you created
- Select Log in with New RefWorks
Creating a reference list in your word processing document using RCM
- Click Update, unless you are using Projects, in which case select the correct project for this document
- Select your preferred output style from the hamburger (three lines) menu.
- Use the Search box to locate specific citations, or click on All references to view the citations in a folder
- Place your cursor where you want to cite a reference within the document and hover over the reference you want to cite in RCM. The Quick Cite button will appear, click the button to insert the citation into your document
- To insert additional references into a single citation, tick the box next to each citation. A preview of the citation will appear the top of the RCM window. Click on Insert citation to insert the citation. The order in which references appear in the citation is determined by your output style
- A formatted reference list will automatically appear the end of the document as you add more citations
The RefWorks output style will determine the format of both your in-text citations (if you're using Write-N-Cite or RCM) and your reference list. The output style decides which fields will be displayed in your reference list, in what order, whether footnotes will be included and much more.
RefWorks has many hundreds of output styles to choose from. Before using RefWorks to generate your reference list you should check which output style your department prefers you to use. Using the wrong style may lose you marks.
Output styles can use different fields to format references. Therefore, it's advisable to decide on your preferred output style as soon as possible rather than edit your reference list to ‘fit' an output style later on.
- In RefWorks click on Normal View in the top right of the screen
- Select the cog icon and the Citation View Settings window will open
- Type the name of your preferred style into the search box and click on the name to select it
- The name of the style will now appear at the top of the window, click Save
- Your references will now be displayed in your selected style
Help and Support
If you have any questions or require assistance using RefWorks please contact Library Services using the ASK the Library button on the homepage or by phone on 020 7594 8810.
Attend a library training workshop on RefWorks. For a timetable visit the Learning Support - Workshops web pages.
The RefWorks support website has guides, documents and online tutorials which you may find useful.
RefWorks also have a number of short ‘how to’ videos available on YouTube.
Download the Refworks quick guide (pdf).
RefWorks for alumni
You can continue to use your RefWorks account after you graduate.
If you have created a password for RCM, you can log into RefWorks using your College email address and your RCM password.
If you have forgotten your password, or have not previously set one up, enter your College email address in the log in screen and click Forgot your Password to create a new password.
- Once logged in click on your name in the top right corner and select Settings
- In the Profile section change your Role to Alumni
- Scroll down to the Institutional Credentials section and click Remove Credentials
- If you wish, you can change the email you log in with by changing the Email displayed in the Profile section
- When you next log in, remember to use the correct email and the password you have created
Please note that alumni access will continue as long as Imperial College continues to subscribe to RefWorks.
RefWorks: How to access RefWorks
A quick guide on how to access RefWorks
RefWorks: Quick guide
A quick guide video to Refworks
RefWorks: Adding references to your account
How to add references to your account
RefWorks: Creating a reference from scratch
This video explains how to create a reference from scratch
Reworks: Direct export from Google Scholar into Refworks
A video showing how to directly export from Google Scholar into Refworks
Reworks: Search online resources
A quick guide on how to search online resources
RefWorks: Using the Save to Refworks button
How to use the Save to Refworks button
RefWorks: Editing a reference
A video showing how to edit a reference
RefWorks: What is Write N Cite and how to download it
What is Write N Cite and how to download it
RefWorks: How to use Write N Cite with Vancouver in Word
A video explaining how to use Write N Cite with Vancouver in Word
RefWorks: editing a Reference Style - Superscript
A video showing how to edit a Reference Style - Superscript in Refworks