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EndNote: Add references

Adding references

Once you've installed and set up EndNote, you can start building your Library.

Manual Entry

 Video Length: 1:21 (demonstration no audio)

Direct Export

Allows you to mark items and export them into your EndNote library.

Export from the Library catalogue

Export from the Library catalogueUse the 'Send To' options found on a record page, or click the " icon on the results page select 'EndNote desktop (RIS)' or 'EndNote web'. To export multiple items use the to save to Favourites then export.

Export from Google Scholar

Use the Quotation iconand select 'EndNote' OR add a direct 'Import into EndNote' link via menu Hamburger menu - 3 line icon > Settings > Bibliography manager change to 'Show links to import citations into' and select EndNote. To export multiple items you will need a Google Account, use the Star iconto save items to My Library then export

Export from databases

Instructions below - how to export references from specific databases into your EndNote library.  Please note if you use a Mac the instructions are the same but with a slightly different interface.

Update references

If your records are missing information e.g. DOI, volume/issue numbers use the Find Reference Updates option. EndNote will search for updates and display any found for you to review. You can then choose to update all fields, update empty fields or edit reference manually.

 Video Length: 0:47 (demonstration no audio)

Import references from PDFs

Three ways to import references from PDFs:

To import a single PDF that you have already saved to your PC:

  1. Go to File > Import > File...
  2. Select Choose..., browse to the relevant PDF, then select Open
  3. From the Import Option drop-down menu, select PDF
  4. Select Import.

PDFs are stored in the .data file associated with your EndNote library.


NOTE: For references which EndNote does not find the details add some information e.g. author and title and use the Find Reference Update option (see below).

  1. Go to File > Import > Folder...
  2. Select Choose..., browse to the relevant folder, then select OK
  3. From the Import Option drop-down menu, select PDF
  4. Select Import.

PDFs are stored in the .data file associated with your EndNote library.


NOTE: For references which EndNote does not find the details add some information e.g. author and title and use the Find Reference Update option (see below).

To set up EndNote to automatically import references in this way:

  1. Go to Edit > Preferences > PDF Handling (for Mac, Preferences is in the EndNote X9 menu)
  2. Under the heading PDF Auto Import Folder, select Enable automatic importing
  3. Select the folder where you'll save PDFs
  4. Select Apply, then select OK (for Mac, just select Save).

When you save a PDF to the selected folder, the next time you open EndNote (if it isn't already open), the reference and the PDF will be automatically imported into your EndNote library, and the PDF will be moved to a subfolder (automatically created and named 'Imported').

PDFs are stored in the .data file associated with your EndNote library.


NOTE: For references which EndNote does not find the details add some information e.g. author and title and use the Find Reference Update option (see below).

NOTE: this will only work 100% with PDFs which include a DOI (Digital Object Identifier), it will not work on scanned copies of PDFs.

Import filters

In some cases, a 'direct export' option may not be available. Instead, you'll need to save your references to a file, then use an import filter to import the file's contents into your EndNote library.

Import Filters

If the filter you require is not supplied with EndNote, search for it at the EndNote Import Filters page, which lists new and updated filters. If the filter is not there, search the EndNote forums or the web, to see if someone has written a filter.

Term lists: Author, Journal title and Keywords

Term lists maintain consistency and accuracy in your EndNote library. To edit an Author's name or add an abbreviated journal title you can edit a term list or import a ready-made list.  

Edit a Term List

'Open Term List' via the 'Library' menu and select a list. Once you have edited a term it will replace the original in the term list but will not change references in your library. Use the 'Find and Replace' via the 'Library' menu.

Import Term List

EndNote provides ready-made journal term lists, e.g. Bioscience, Chemical, Law, Medical and Humanities that can be imported into your library. Use this for output styles that requires abbreviated journal titles.