This guide was developed by Hannah Menendez (2020).
Choose an Alternate Citation Manager
Before you get started with moving your references, the first thing you need to do is choose a different citation manager and make an account. Click here to learn about the different citation management programs and compare features.
This page will cover how to import into Zotero, Mendeley, and EndNote. For instructions on creating an account and installing one of these managers, see the "Resources" column to the left of this page.
For the easiest export/import process, download the desktop application of your new citation manager.
Export References from RefWorks
These directions are for New/Proquest RefWorks (refworks.proquest.com). If you are using Legacy RefWorks, you can find video instructions for transitioning to another citation manager via the "Legacy RefWorks" tab at the top of this box.
Once you have created an account with your preferred citation manager, you will need to export your references from RefWorks. This is a fairly simple process.
1. Click the “Share” button at the top of the screen on the homepage. Then select “Export references.”
2. Select “All References” and then select “RIS” as the format. (If using Zotero/Mendeley on desktop, you can also export as a .bib format).
3. If you want to preserve your folder hierarchy, export your folders one at a time and save them as separate files. You can do this by clicking on your folder, then following steps 1-2 from that folder rather than from the Refworks homepage.
4. When you click “Export,” the file should download.
5. Now you're ready to import your references into your new citation manager! Use the tabs at the top of this page to navigate to your specific new citation manager for further instructions.
Your file attachments will not transfer into your new citation manager, only the reference information. You will need to upload PDFs, Word docs, etc. individually.
Import References into Zotero for Desktop
1. If you have the desktop application already downloaded, your Refworks references should automatically import into your Zotero application when you open the .ris or .bib file.
2. If the file does not automatically import, save it to your computer and open your Zotero desktop application. Click File > Import, and then select the .ris or .bib file you just saved.
Import References into Zotero Online
If you are only using Zotero in your browser, then go to zotero.com. In your library, click the “+” sign and then select “Upload file.” You can then upload the .ris or .bib file you just saved.
Check out our Zotero User Guide!
Import References into EndNote
Desktop Application* Instructions:
1. After you click "Export" in RefWorks and open the .ris file from your browser, a dialog box should appear, prompting you to select a program to open the file. If EndNote is already downloaded onto your desktop, you should see "EndNote" appear in the dropdown box next to "Open with."
2. If EndNote does not appear in the dropdown list, choose "Other," and then go to your Program Files folder, select the EndNote folder and then the EndNote application.
EndNote Online Instructions:
Save the .ris file to your computer. Make sure you only save as an .ris file (EndNote will not open .bib files). Open your EndNote application or go to your web library, click "File" and then "Import," and then select the .ris file you just saved to your computer.
*Note: FSU does not offer free access to EndNote Desktop, though EndNote X9 offers student/faculty discounts. Go to https://its.fsu.edu/software-store > Personal Orders > Check the box for Third Party Release permission > Other Software > EndNote X9
Import References into Mendeley
1. Open your library. If your library is empty, you should see a blue button in the middle of the page that says "Upload documents now." Click that button, and select the .ris or .bib file you just saved. You can also simply drag and drop the file into the indicated space.
2. If you have already added documents to your Mendeley account, use the "Add" button at the top left corner of your screen to upload the file.
Check out our Mendeley User Guide!