RefWorks Transition: Home

What is Happening to RefWorks?

After careful consideration, LIU Libraries will be cancelling the subscription to RefWorks effective as of June 30, 2014.    The LIU Libraries will be supporting the use of the open source program called Zotero which can be downloaded for free. Zotero is compatible with Firefox, Safari, or Chrome browsers but not with Internet Explorer. Zotero also installs in Firefox as an Addon or plugin.We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.  The following information in this Library Guide will help you transfer your RefWorks references into Zotero.  Informatiion for installing Zotero can be found on the tabs above.  Information on uisng Zotero can be found in the Zotero Libguide.


Note:  You also have the option to subscribe to RefWorks as an individual.  Information on pricing can be found on the RefWorks website.

How to Export Your RefWorks file into Zotero

If you do not have separate folders you can export all of your references in one file.  If you have folders and wish to retain them in Zotero or another Citation Management program follow the instructions below for "Exporting RefWorks Reference a Folder at a Time."  These instructions assume that you have already installed the Zotero plugin on your personal computer. 

To Export your entire RefWorks file all at once into Zotero:

  1. Make sure you are viewing "All References"
  2. Click on References from the menu
  3. Choose Export
  4. "All in List" should be checked (if not Check)
  5. Use as Export Format, the default "Bibliographic Software (Endnote, Reference Manger, Procite)" should appear (Zotero will import this format)
  6. If you need another format to Export, choose from list
  7. Click on Export References button
  8. Popup processing window will appear as Export is performed
  9. The popup processing window will say "Completed" when the Export is finished
  10. Follow the instructions in the popup window to download the file
  11. The file will open as a plain text file in your browser when the file is opened (attachments are not exported)
  12. In your browser, click on File and Save to save to the file to your computer
  13. Be sure to save the file in a safe location until you are ready to import into Zotero
  14. Open Zotero (in Firefox go to Tools/Zotero; In Chrome or Safari open standalone version)
  15. Click on the Settings button (gear or sprocket icon)
  16. Choose Import
  17. Find file on your computer and click Open
  18. File will be imported

Exporting RefWork Reference a Folder at a Time

  1. Choose the folder in RefWorks you wish to export
  2. Follow instructions from #2 through #12 above
  3. Open Zotero (in Firefox go to Tools/Zotero)
  4. Follow instructions #14 to #18 Above
  5. Right Click on imported file
  6. Choose Rename Collection
  7. Rename File to Correspond to RefWorks folder name

Any Refworks field content without a corresponding field in Zotero will be stored in the Zotero Note field.

Importing Your RefWorks Files into Mendeley

Mendeley is another citation management program that can be downloaded for free.  Mendeley does not have a plugin for Firefox and is only available in a desktop and web version.  

  1. Follow the instructions above for exporting your RefWorks file above
  2. Open the Mendeley Desktop program
  3. Click on FILE/IMPORT
  4. Choose any format
  5. Use drop down menu "Files of Type" and choose Text (*txt)
  6. Choose your RefWorks file on your computer
  7. Click on Open
  8. File will import into Mendeley

Subject Guide

Robert Battenfeld

LIU Post
B. Davis Schwartz Memorial Library
Reference Office, Room 237
720 Northern Blvd.
Brookville, NY 11548