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RefWorks: Using Write-N-Cite 4 plugin

This guide was developed for Canadian university students by Scholars Portal, a service of the Ontario Council of University Libraries (OCUL).

Write-N-Cite 4

Write-N-Cite is a plugin for Microsoft Word that does exactly what it says: you can cite your paper as you write it!

Downloading WNC4

Canadian users can download Write-N-Cite 4 by logging into their RefWorks account online and navigating to Tools > Write-N-Cite.

WNC4 is available for both Windows (Microsoft Word 2013, 2010, and 2007) and Mac (Microsoft Word 2011 and 2008). If you're using Windows, you will have to choose the correct installer for 32bit Office or 64bit Office. For helping choosing the appropriate version, select the help symbol next to any version.

How do you know whether you have the 32bit or the 64bit version of Office? Find out in our FAQs.

Logging in to WNC 4

There are two ways to log into Write-N-Cite 4.

Please note: do not fill in the fields for both options or the login process will not work. You can either fill in the fields for option 1 or option 2, but not both at the same time.

The options are:

  1. If you know your group code, simply enter your group code, username, and password as usual:
  2. If you don't know your group code, you can login using the login code option instead. Log into your RefWorks account, and go to Tools > Write-N-Cite.
    1. Copy the login code (long string of letters and numbers) provided on the download page:
    2. Click the login icon in WNC, and paste this code into the login window:
    3. Remember, this login code expires after a few hours, so you will need to retrieve a new code from the download page each time you need to log into Write-N-Cite.

Please note: your account may take a few minutes to sync, especially if you have a lot of output styles on your favorites list. We recommend you keep your favorites list short. Instructions on managing your output styles are provided here.

Working with WNC 4

Write-N-Cite 4 looks a little different than earlier versions of Write-N-Cite. On Word for Mac, it's a small, floating toolbar. On Word for Windows, it's a ribbon.


Write-N-Cite 4 toolbar for Mac


Write-N-Cite 4 ribbon for Windows

Some other changes include:

  • No more curly bracket placeholders! Your paper will be formatted as you work, but you can still change the citation style at any point in your writing process.
  • You can easily edit citations as you insert them to hide or add information as you need.

When you select Insert or Edit a citation, a window will appear with many more options:

  • View reference by folder, or sorted by author, date, or article title
  • Insert several citations at a time by simply double clicking each reference
  • References that have already been included will be greyed out
  • Search all references from the top right-hand bar

Write-N-Cite will automatically insert the appropriate fields for your chosen style, but you can override these settings by editing a reference:

  • Hide the year or author if you've already mentioned them in-text
  • Suppress the page numbers, or alter them from the original citation
  • Include a citation as a footnote, or keep it out of the text all together but include it in your bibliography
  • Add additional information:

  • Fields will be greyed out when not applicable to your chosen style.
  • All changes will appear right away in the Preview Citation window.

If your chosen style has a rule about which order citations should appear in, they will be placed in that order. If you need to change the order, tick Override default ordering at the bottom. You can then use the arrows to re-order your citations.

Inserting page numbers

Page numbers should be inserted using the Suffix box in the Insert/Edit Citation window:

Screenshot of Insert/Edit Citation window

If you've already created the citation, you can access the Insert/Edit Citation window by double-clicking on the in-text citation (on Windows) or by clicking the Edit Citation icon on the toolbar (on a Mac).