RefWorks InformationRefWorks

RefWorks allows you to create your own database by importing references from online databases, and use these references to format bibliographies.

MCW Libraries' subscription to RefWorks allows for free access for all MCW faculty, staff, residents and students and CHW and FH employees who work on the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center campus. Access is available from the MCW network, either on campus or remotely.

Note: Within RefWorks, the Get It From MCW Libraries button works only when connected while using an on-campus connection.


Exporting Citations in RefWorks

When you export citation information from SEEK, Google Scholar and other MCW Libraries’ databases, you will be asked to choose which version of RefWorks you'd like to export to. Current RefWorks users should choose Legacy RefWorks. Learn more about exporting citations in RefWorks.

Important Information for Mac users and Write-n-Cite:

Write-N-Cite is not compatible with Word 2016.Use the One Line/Cite View feature instead. A video with instructions for One Line/Cite View is available.

If you are using Office 2010 on a Mac, you will need to install a different version of Java. View the troubleshooting guide for more information.

Write-n-Cite 4 is compatible with Microsoft Word 2008 and 2011. Note: Do not install Write-N-Cite with Microsoft Word running. If you have an earlier version of Write-N-Cite 2, uninstall it before continuing.

Write-N-Cite for Mac is compatible with OS X 10.5, 10.6 & 10.7 (Leopard, Snow Leopard & Lion). It works as a plugin for Microsoft Word 2008 and 2011. View more information on installing Write-N-Cite for Macs.

Before leaving the download page please copy your Login Code onto your clipboard, using the instructions on the left hand side of the page. This will enable you to easily log in to Write-N-Cite without needing your RefWorks credentials or on campus access.

RefWorks Guides

RefWorks Video Tutorials
Quick Start Guide (PDF) (2.0)
RefWorks LibGuides
Frequently Asked Questions
Creating an Output Style with Annotations (PDF) | Customizing an Output Style (PDF)
Converting from Other Bibliographic Management Software (PDF)
Converting Microsoft Access, Excel and Word Files for Import into RefWorks (PDF)

How to create an account

  1. Go to
  2. From RefWorks, click on Sign Up for a New Account.
  3. Enter the MCW Group Code if prompted. *
  4. Enter the fields and click Next.
  5. Complete the fields and click Create Account.

* Please note: MCW users located at home using an outside Internet Service Provider will need to enter a Group Code when setting up an account. Contact asklib for the Group Code. Users registering for an account while on campus will not be prompted for the Group Code.

RefWorks Help
The Quick Start Guide (PDF) outlines what you'll need to know to start using RefWorks. It is also available from the RefWorks website. In addition, there is a RefWorks tutorial available within the program itself. Click on "Tutorial" located at the top of each RefWorks page.
For questions about RefWorks, please contact the MCW Libraries Reference Desk at or (414) 955-8302.


More About RefWorks

RefWorks allows you to create your own database by importing references from online databases, and use these references to format bibliographies. Because RefWorks is web-based, users do not need to buy individual copies of software.

What are the advantages of using RefWorks over other products such as EndNote or Reference Manager?

  • No program to buy and upgrade. No patches necessary.
  • Accessibility anywhere with an Internet connection.
  • Backup/storage of your data is off-site.
  • Easier data sharing with colleagues.

RefWorks can be used independently or as a complement to EndNote, exporting and importing citations between the programs.


RefWorks allows you to:

  • Create a personal database online - Store an unlimited number of records accessible from any computer linked to the Internet. No downloading software or installation required.
  • Import references automatically from multiple databases - Search results from a wide variety of databases can be automatically exported into RefWorks with the click of a button.
  • Organize references - Sort and file references quickly and easily using folders, duplicate search and author, keyword and periodical indexes.
  • Format bibliographies and manuscripts in seconds - Save hours of typing time and decreasing number of errors in creating tedious bibliographies.
    Easily make changes to your paper and reformat in seconds.
  • Share your references with both members of our institution and globally with any researcher having Internet access.

Who uses RefWorks?

  • Researchers - RefWorks is the perfect tool for storing a personal database of research, sharing research with colleagues, and downloading bibliographies in multiple formats based on the needs of specific journals.
  • Students - RefWorks provides folders to store information by class.
    AccuCite helps make sure that you have all the information you need to generate an accurate, concise bibliography.
  • Faculty - RefWorks not only provides research tools for faculty, it also allows them to provide read-only access for class-related bibliographies.
  • Librarians - RefWorks is a perfect bibliographic teaching tool. With campus-wide system, it consolidates the need to support multiple bibliographic management tools.

RefWorks is easy as 1, 2, 3...

1. Build your database with wide-ranging compatibility

  • Import references directly from online databases or saved text files
  • Import records from other bibliographic management programs
  • Add references manually

2. Manage your references

  • Organize references with RefWorks' easy folder system
  • Easily sort and edit
  • Search and browse references for quick data retrieval

3. Generate bibliographies and footnotes

  • Write-N-Cite - while writing your paper, find your RefWorks citations in Word and integrate them into your bibliography
  • Choose 247 output formats - or switch output formats at the click of a button
  • AccuCite provides an online guide to style formatting instantly as you enter the data

Why use an Internet-based bibliographic manager?

  • No special software required... RefWorks is a Web-based service that can be used with any major Web browser on any platform
  • Accessible anytime, nearly anywhere... Users can access RefWorks any time of the day from any Internet-connected computer
  • Machine independence... RefWorks is compatible with multiple platforms including Windows, Mac and Unix
  • Share information... RefWorks makes it easy to disseminate bibliographies online, or to collaborate with geographically disparate colleagues to create a bibliography
  • Compatible with numerous online resources... Users can import references quickly and easily from most major online database services, other bibliographic software packages, and also the library's catalog
  • Upgrades automatically... All upgrades are automatically made available to the user without the need to re-load software. The upgrades are provided at no extra fee
  • Language Compatibility... RefWorks is compatible with non-roman characters (Japanese, Arabic, Chinese)