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Lucy Scribner Library

Legacy RefWorks: Write-N-Cite 4

What is Write-N-Cite 4?

Write-N-Cite 4 (WNC4) is a RefWorks utility that allows users to add and properly format references from your RefWorks database into your paper while you write. It works with your word-processor to create citations instantly in your preferred citation style.

With WNC4, you can cite references in a manuscript with just a click and watch your paper format instantly including in-text citations, footnotes and your bibliography.  The utility installs a RefWorks tab in the MS Word ribbon or you can access it from the References tab in Microsoft Word.

The new version of WNC4 runs on Word for Windows 2007 & 2010 as well as Word for Mac 2008 & 2011. You'll get the same features on either platform, and sharing documents between computers is as easy as opening a file.

Key improvements to WNC 4:

  • The tool is built into Word and will no longer be displayed as a separate webpage.
  • Auto formatting while you write; changing citation styles has never been easier.
  • Auto-managed footnote and formatting styles; the software handles all footnotes and knows what's right for each style.
  • Full support for Mac, Windows, or across platforms
  • Seamless online/offline access to your references
  • Professional citation and bibliography customization tools

Note: To use Write-N-Cite 4 you will need to download and install it onto your personal computer. WNC 4 is compatible with both PCs and Macintoshes. WNC4 is loaded on all Skidmore public computers.

WNC4 Advanced Features

  • WNC Advanced Features

    Learn how to:

    • Editing Citations
    • Switching between Notes and In-Text styles
    • Custom Bibliography Formatting

Write-N-Cite 4 Video

Get Started with Write-N-Cite in 4 Easy Steps

Getting Started With Write-N-Cite in 4 Easy Steps

You can get started with Write-N-Cite easily and view the formatting of your in-text citations, footnotes and bibliography – all while you are writing your paper.

To get started:

  • Click “RefWorks” in your MS Word ribbon to launch Write-N-Cite

  • Select an output style

  • Insert in-text citations or footnotes and your bibliography

  • Save your paper

Step 1. Launch Write-N-Cite

Note:  The first time you launch Write-N-Cite for Windows, you will must be connected to the internet in order to log in to RefWorks and sync your RefWorks database with Write-N-Cite.

Tip:  In most cases, there is no need to log out of Write-N-Cite when you are not using it.   If you are using Write-N-Cite for Windows on a public computer without a personal login, you should log out of Write-N-Cite when you complete your work.  If someone does gain access to a system with your RefWorks account logged in to Write-N-Cite, they will not be able to change anything in your account since Write-N-Cite doesn’t have any features to edit your database.

Logging In To Write-N-Cite for Windows:

1. Click RefWorks from the Microsoft Word ribbon.  

 2. In the Settings area, click Log In.

 3. If you know your organization’s group code, enter it and your RefWorks username and password.

 4. If you do not know your group code, you can obtain a Login Code by navigating in RefWorks to the Tools, Write-N-Cite page.  A unique code is displayed for you and is valid for four hours.  This Login Code replaces the need for your username and password.

Note:  You do not need to obtain a new login code every time you use Write-N-Cite.  You only need a new login code if you have logged out of Write-N-Cite.

After you log in the first time, Write-N-Cite will automatically “sync” with your RefWorks account.  This may take a few minutes. It is downloading your references, folders and preferred output styles.  Each time you open a document in Word (and are accessing the Internet), Write-N-Cite will automatically check your RefWorks account and download any newly added references or changes to your Output Style Manager. The red progress bar at the bottom of the document shows the database is syncing.


During this period, you can still access all of Word’s functionality, but the Write-N-Cite functions will not become active until syncing has finished.

Step 2.  Selecting Your Output Style

The first thing you will want to do is select an output style for your document.  Any in-text citations or footnotes and your bibliography will be displayed in your document while you write your paper – in the output style you have selected.  You can always change the style later if you need to.

1. Click the Style drop down.  You will see a list of RefWorks’ popular styles.

2. Click on the style name or click Select Other Style at the bottom of the list to see your personal “favorites” or any output styles recommended by your organization (group favorites).

3. You can change your output style and the formatting of your paper at any time by clicking on Style and selecting a new output style.


Note:  if the output style you need for your paper is NOT in listed in the popular styles, favorites or group favorites, you will need to log in to your RefWorks account and add it using the Output Style Manager.  Once you add the style, you may need to sync Write-N-Cite to download the new style.  Click Sync My Database in the Extras area of Write-N-Cite to download the newly added style.

Step 3.  Write Your Paper and Inserting Citations or Footnotes and Your Bibliography

When you are ready to insert an in-text citation or footnote into your paper:

1.  Click the Insert Citation and Insert New option to launch the insert/edit citation box.  If you have previously used Write-N-Cite, you may see some recently selected citations listed above the Insert New option.   You can select citations displayed from this list or access all your references from the Insert New option.




2. Once the Insert/Edit Citation box displays, you can access references by folder or view all references (which you can sort by author, year or title) or search for a specific reference.   

Folder list view:


Reference list view:


You can also locate your references using the search box which will perform a literal search across every field of every reference.  Search modifiers like “AND” and “OR” will be used as search text, not conditionals.


Tip:  If you move your mouse over the reference, you will see the full title.  Right-clicking on the reference and choosing the item from the context menu will display the complete record (file attachments are not displayed).

Full Reference View:


3.  Click on the reference you wish to insert into your paper.  You will see a preview of the formatted citation in your current Output Style.


4. Click OK to insert your formatted citation into your paper.

Tip:  To add a second references in a single citation, click the + button in the Compose Citation area and then select the reference from your list.   If you know you will be adding multiple references to the citation, Double-click your reference to add it and make space for a new one.

5. To insert a footnote instead of an in-text citation, click the Make Footnote checkbox in the Edit Reference area.  Once you make a footnote and finish editing the citation, you will not be able to undo this action.  However, you can always add a new in-text citation.


6. You can insert your bibliography anywhere in your paper while you are writing.  Click Bibliography Options, Insert Bibliography.  Note:  the bibliography will be inserted wherever the cursor is in your paper.  You can click Remove Bibliography and re-insert if it you need to change the location.



Step 4. Save your formatted paper (you should really save it periodically while you are writing!).