Skip to main content

Biological Sciences

What is RefWorks?

RefWorks is a web-based tool that is free to use for all members of Royal Holloway. It will help you to capture, save and organise references, and to create bibliographies correctly formatted in a wide range of different styles, that can be used in any word processing software. You can access it on- and off-campus, from any PC which has internet access.

Key information

A new version of RefWorks is now available.

The existing (Legacy) version will remain available for the foreseeable future.

If you are an existing user then you can carry on using the Legacy version for the time being. However, it might be a good idea to create a New RefWorks account to test the new version while you continue your projects in Legacy RefWorks.   You will then be familiar with the functionality of New RefWorks and whether it will work for you.

If you want to use both versions for a period, please do not use the same password for Legacy RefWorks as you have for New RefWorks.  This will cause issues if you want to use Write-n-Cite with both versions.

You can transfer your references over to the New version at anytime  - see the tabbed box to the right in this box on how to transfer your existing account over.  
N.B. - You will still have access to your Legacy version even though you have created a new account.

If you are new to RefWorks we recommend logging in via the New version - see tabbed box to the right in this box on how to create an account.

What the new version offers:

  • a simplified and more intuitive interface
  • an option for auto-completion of references
  • an option to upload and create references from pdf documents
  • tools to read, highlight and add comments and notes to your pdf documents
  • an option to preview your references in the style of your choice with any possibly missing information highlighted
  • a Google Docs Add-in for writing and formatting papers.

For information on its use:

Important: If you have been working on a document and using Write-n-Cite in Legacy it is recommended that you continue using Legacy for that document.

If you wish to transfer your existing Legacy account to New RefWorks:

  • Login into Legacy as normal
  • Select the option to move to the newest version of RefWorks - this is in the top-left corner
  • Sign-up to the new version.
  • Click on Next and continue clicking on Next to see features of the new RefWorks and then on Done.
  • Your references and folders should carry across - Check under My Folder.

The short video below will show you how to do this step by step

To create a RefWorks account:

  1. Go to
  2. Click on create account
  3. Enter your RHUL email address and select Check
  4. Fill in the form - enter your first and last name, your subject area and role within the university, Click on Next
  5. Keep selecting Next to go through some of the important features of using RefWorks then on Done

Due to some issues with New RefWorks and Write-N-Cite, we advise that you continue using Legagy RefWorks for the time being.

Creative Commons License
Royal Holloway Library LibGuide by Royal Holloway Library is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.