Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Refworks: Using RefWorks with Microsoft Word

Using RefWorks with Microsoft Word

RefWorks offers an add-in for Microsoft Word that allows you to drop any citation from your RefWorks account into a Word document, fully-formatted in whatever citation style you choose. It also creates and automatically updates a bibliography or works cited page. Using this add-in can help you spend less time on citations and formatting and more on the actual work of writing.

There are two versions of the add-in. Write-n-Cite is the old version, and works with Word 2013 and earlier. The new version is called RefWorks Citation Manager, and works with Word 2016 and later. Choose the version you need below for instructions on installing and using the tool.

Write-N-Cite (all PC versions & Mac Word 2011 and earlier)

Get the Plugin

From your RefWorks page, go to the "three dots" menu and choose "Tools."

Scroll down to "Cite in Microsoft Word" and click 

Add a Citation

Once you have installed Write-N-Cite, open Microsoft Word and click the tab that has been added to your ribbon -- it will be called either "ProQuest" or "RefWorks." Click on “Log In” and enter your RefWorks username and password.

To add your first citation, choose “Insert Citation” and then “Insert New.”


A window pops up allowing you to choose a RefWorks citation from your RefWorks folders.

Click “OK” and the citation is added to your document:

Once you insert a citation, it also gets added to a menu under the “Insert Citation” button so you can re-use it quickly:

Add a Bibliography

You can insert a bibliography into your document by clicking “Bibliography Options” and “Insert Bibliography.”

The bibliography is added to the document. It updates automatically, so every time you add a citation to the body of your text, the full citation appears in the bibliography, properly ordered:

At any time, you can change your citation style . . .

. . . and the citations and bibliography in your document will automatically update.

You can add a citation as a footnote instead of an in-text citation by checking the box that says “Make Footnote” when you add a new citation.

A footnote is added to the bottom of the page:

That’s it! Now you know all you need to begin using Write-N-Cite to speed up you work.

The plugin also has advanced options for things like customizing your bibliography’s formatting or editing your citations. You can learn more at

Write-N-Cite's Mac version looks a little different but functions identically to the PC version.

Installing Write-N-Cite on a Mac:

First, download Write-N-Cite to your computer. If you have an older version of Write-N-Cite already installed, you may get a pop-­­up message like the one below when you open Word. To download the latest version of Write-N-Cite, login to your RefWorks account and go to Tools --> Write-­­N-­­Cite.


There are two versions of Write-N-Cite available: Mac and Windows. Choose the appropriate version for your computer, and download and install the software. Then, open Microsoft Word.

If you open Microsoft Word and don’t automatically see the Write-N-Cite toolbar at the top left of your screen, go to Help and search for “Write-­­N-­­Cite.” This will give you a link to show your WNC toolbar.

Before you login to Write-N-Cite, your toolbar will look like the one below. Click the person icon to enter your RefWorks login information:

Enter your RefWorks account info in the login window. All the sources currently in your RefWorks account will then be downloaded to Write-N-Cite in Word.


Now, your Write-N-Cite toolbar will look like this. You’re ready to write…and cite!


Using Write-N-Cite on a Mac

RefWorks Citation Manager (Mac Word 2016)

1. Open Word and click Insert -> Add-ins -> Store

2. In the box that appears, search for RefWorks.

3. Click on RefWorks Citation Manager, then Trust It in the box that pops up.

4. The RefWorks Citation Manager will launch within Word, and a panel will slide out from the right side of your document. Log in using your RefWorks login info.


1. If it is not already active, activate RefWorks Citation Manager by going to Insert -> Add-ins -> My Add-ins and choosing it from the box that pops up.


2. A panel will slide out from the right side of your document, listing your RefWorks citations!


4. Clicking Cite this will drop an in-text citation into your document where the cursor is! It also automatically generates a bibliography, which will be updated automatically every time you add a new citation. Amazing! (You can drop the bibliography to another page using Insert --> Page Break.)

5. That's it! You have everything you need to use RefWorks with Microsoft Word.

Accessibility | Proxy Logout