Referencing and RefWorks
RefWorks is a bibliographic management tool, which helps you store and organise your references. With RefWorks you can also create reference lists or bibliographies in formats such as RGU Harvard and RGU Vancouver, as well as formatting essays or dissertations to include in-text citations and reference lists.
Please remember you will always need to check that any of your citations, reference lists or bibliographies comply with the RGU Harvard Guide or RGU Vancouver Guide before submitting assignments, dissertations, etc.
Creating your Account
When you start using RefWorks, you will first need to create an account:
After you created your account, you shouldn't have to do this again. From now on, you can either access RefWorks directly, or find it via the RGU Library Webpage - under the Referencing & RefWorks section you will find Access RefWorks. You will be prompted to use your RGU username and password to log in.
You may notice this window popping up after you log in, or at other times while you connect to RefWorks. You should select the Legacy RefWorks option, as this is the version of RefWorks which the University is currently subscribed to. The other is a newer version of RefWorks, which hasn't been rolled out to us yet. You will notice that if you mistakenly click on the 'Proquest RefWorks' option, it will not recognise your RGU username and password.
If you ever find yourself having to connect to RefWorks from an external source (not via the link on our Library webpages), you can still log in, but it is a slightly different procedure.
Adding References to RefWorks
In order to use RefWorks you must populate it with citation or reference information. There are several ways to enter this information:
If you don't want to add the details of books manually, or want to upload multiple books' details at once, it's easy to pull this information directly from our RGU Library collection.
There are a few choices to make here. Firstly, notice the drop-down menu next to Search; by default, this should display PubMed. Click on the down-arrow to expand the list of catalogues you can choose from, and search for Robert Gordon University Library, Aberdeen. Once you find us, click to select this option.
You can also choose how many results RefWorks should retrieve based on the keywords you will enter. It's 50 by default.
Have a look through the list of results and tick the checkbox next to the books which you would like to add to your collection.
You can either add these to a folder (if you don't have a folder already, you can create a new one after you click on Import to folder...), or simply click Import, and your references will be added to a default folder called Last Imported.
Depending on how many book references you want to import, this step may be very quick (if few books) or slightly longer (a few seconds wait if many books). So, don't get alarmed if it "hangs" slightly, there are a lot of background processes happening :)
Once you get the Import completed message, you can click on View Last Imported Folder to see them.
Although most of the databases we subscribe to have the functionality to export articles directly to RefWorks, some don't offer this option. The steps you'll need to take to export articles from a database and import them into RefWorks will vary depending on how the database is layed out. So, we set out a separate page which contains detailed procedures of how to export articles for most of our databases. If you are unsure about any of them, please let us know!RefWorks: Importing from Databases
Not everything can be done automatically, unfortunately some resources like images or webpages will need to be added in manually. Still, the process is really easy!
There are a few things to fill in here. Firstly, make sure you select the correct RGU recommended referencing style. This could be either Harvard or Vancouver. Then, select the type of material from the drop-down menu.
You will notice that depending on the type of material you selected, the fields required change. For example, a webpage reference will ask for a URL and an Accessed date, whereas a journal article will ask for volume and issue numbers.
Start filling in the fields with the information you have about the source. If you are unsure, hover over the name of the field and a yellow box will appear, explaining what should go in the field and in what format.
Folders are a useful tool for organising and locating your references when you access your RefWorks account. There is no limit to the number of folders you can create, and you can put references in more than one folder at the same time. It is useful to name your folders to something useful, such as the chapters of a thesis or dissertation, topics of your study, etc.
First, click on the New Folder button at the top of the screen, and this window will pop up.
Then, you can give your folder a suitable name and hit Create. Notice that there is also an option to add a subfolder if you like.
If you select the Organise & Share Folders, you can see all your folders, locate any references not in a folder and rename, clear or delete any folders as needed. The folders can also be accessed from the menu that appears on the right of the screen at all times.
You can do things like clearing, renaming, sharing or deleting your folders by either clicking on the little folder icon next to the name, or by right-clicking on the title of the folder.
It easy to add references to your folders, and you can do this at different stages. You can add them in an existing folder when you import them, or you can move them from your general collection, after they had been imported. You simply have to tick the box against the records you want to move, and hover over the 'yellow folder' button, then choose which folder you'd like them to go into.
Viewing, Editing, Searching References
To view a complete list of all your references, regardless of which folders they are located in, you can hover over References on the grey menu at the top of the screen. Here you can click on All References. Alternatively, you can see if you have any duplicate references, either Exact Duplicates or Close Duplicates.
You can also see the full details of individual references in your list by clicking on the little magnifying glass icon to the right of the reference.
From here you can also do things like edit the reference, duplicate, or delete it.
There are cases when you may want to ajust information in one of your records, or add additional details. You can do this easily through the Edit menu. Just click on the little icon showing a paper and pencil, and an editing window will pop up. Notice that you can change the obvious details like authors, titles, years of publication. However, you can also:
To reveal these extra options, you need to click on Advanced. Don't worry, these additional details won't affect the look of the reference list once you generate it.
As always, don't forget to save your changes.
Once you have added some references to RefWorks, you will be able to search through them. You can perform a simple search from the Search bar located on the top-right corner of the screen. Although, if you select ‘Search’ on the top menu, you have a few more criteria:
Citations, Reference Lists, Bibliographies
It's easy to add citations from RefWorks into your essay, and it's the first step in getting RefWorks to format your document with the correct style of citations and reference list. Make sure you have both RefWorks and your Word document open, to make things easier for you. Once you find the record you want to insert in your essay click on the little golden curly brackets to the right of the reference.
Notice the overlay window called Citation Viewer. Copy the generated citation in your essay, at the point where you would normally cite.
Don't worry that it doesn't look quite like a proper RGU Harvard citation yet. It will do in the next step! It is very important that you copy this exactly as RefWorks generated it and that you don't remove or change any of the numbers or symbols appearing. Trust us! :)
At this stage you may want to add a different citation somewhere else in your essay. Remember to first Clear the Citation Viewer before you click on any other golden curly brackets.
If you don't clear the box, clicking on another record will add its abbreviated information to the existing citation. This may come in handy if you want to use multiple sources to back up one idea
The only thing left to do is to paste the RefWorks citations into your essay. This is just a mock-up example of how it may look, although we expect your essay won't be in latin! :)
Remember to save your document.
Paste citations in Word (+)
As an alternative to the method described above, you can use an option called Write-N-Cite, a plug in tool which you can install for Word. Find the link to download and install it in the Tools menu; guidance can be found in the Help section (in RefWorks).
Please note that students cannot use Write-N-Cite on university computers, but you can install it on your personal devices.
First, hover over the Bibliography option on the grey top menu and select Format Document.
It is very important that you select the correct RGU Recommended referencing style here. Otherwise, your referencing list will not be according to our guidelines. Once you select either RGU Harvard or RGU Vancouver, you can upload the essay (the one with the citations with the curly brackets).
Depending on how big your work is, this step may take different periods of time. It will be fairly quick if it's a short essay with a handful of references, but much longer if you're uploading a dissertation! While you wait, RefWorks is now looking at your document, and wherever it finds its recognisable citations, it connects to your collection and pulls out the correct record and its details, generating an appropriate citation and reference list entry! A bit like magic :)
Once the process is finished, look out for this little message appearing on the bottom right corner of your screen.
You may get a download prompt from your browser, but if you don't, just click on the first 'click here' option. Once the newly generated Word file is downloaded, open it up and see the changes! All citations now look like they should, and there even is an RGU Harvard reference list at the end, in alphabetical order! :)
Please remember to check the document and the reference list and make any edits needed such as adding a heading to the list, any formatting required by your school/department, changes to the references, adding in page numbers for direct quotes and so on.
If you get an error message when trying to create your reference list try saving your word document in the Word 97-2003 format; using an earlier format of word can sometimes stop error messages being produced.
Before you begin, select the references which you want to include in your bibliography. You can either select them individually from your collection, or select all the references from one of the pre-set folders.
After you've made your selection, hover over the Bibliography option on the grey menu at the top, and hit Create Bibliography.
Then, make sure you select the correct RGU recommended referencing style (Harvard or Vancouver), and choose how you want the bibliography to be generated. The HTML option means that a new page will pop up with your references and you can simply copy them and paste them in your document. Alternatively, you can select the option of exporting them directly into a Word document.
Then, click on Create Bibliography and you will be prompted when the process is complete.
Remember to check the bibliography, make any edits needed and then either save and/or add it to your main piece of work.
Alumni of the Robert Gordon University can get free access to RefWorks for as long as the University is a paid customer of RefWorks. This entitles you to:
To access RefWorks as an Alumni you will need a group code. To get it please either contact the library, or if you are a current student looking to set up access before you graduate, then find the code here (CampusMoodle).
Once you have the group code you can create your account:
It is very important that you keep your email address information up-to-date in your RefWorks account (you can update it at Tools, Update User Information). RefWorks may periodically change the Group Code for the Alumni site and you will receive notification of any change via email.
Please make sure you keep your account information updated.
The Backup/Restore feature allows you to make a copy of your database (including RefID numbers and folders) and custom output styles, into your new account.
Please Note - Folders that do not contain any references will not be saved. If you have empty folders that you wish to retain add a reference to the folder before backing up. Also, any preferences set in the customize area of RefWorks will be included in the backup.
To backup and restore your current RefWorks account:
In the current account:
In the new Alumni account:
Restoring will overwrite all of the references in your database. If you need to restore from a back up for some reason, be sure to do so in either an empty database or to an account that does not have any data you want to save.
These are some of the current known issues / problems with RefWorks, along with any solutions we have identified for them. We are updating this page as issues are identified or fixed. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any queries or are experiencing any other problems.
While Art Source primarily includes journal articles when the results are sent to RefWorks, they appear as the generic reference type rather than the journal article type. This is a problem as the generic reference type is substantially different to the journal article one.
To fix it click the Edit Record icon and from Reference Type select Journal Article type and save. All the information will be in the correct fields.
Now that you went through our step-by-step guide, check out these other sources which cover RefWorks in further detail. As always, you can also contact us if you have any questions which we didn't cover.