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EndNote: Formatting Word Documents

Guide to using EndNote, software that helps organise your reference sources. Also allows you to create in text citations and a list of references as you type in Microsoft Word.

FAQ Contents

Click the links below to move to other topics in the FAQs.

 APA 6th Style

• Does EndNote do it all?
• What is APA 6th - AUT X7?
• Wrong style in reference list
• Preview in EndNote looks wrong
• URL for an e-journal article
• APA 6th help

 Attaching Files

• Exporting articles - automatic?
• Attach a PDF
• Other files
• Open a file
• Import a PDF
• DATA folder
• Find Full Text

 Author Names

• Common mistakes
• Corporate author
• Author initials or first names
• Multi-part names
• Omit author from in text citation 
• Corporate author abbreviation

 Chicago/Turabian Style

• What is it?
• Is Chicago/Turabian different from Chicago?
• 'Notes and Bibliography' version
• Get it right in Word
• 'Author Date' version
• Help with footnotes

 EndNote Tools in Word

• EndNote tab/toolbar disappeared
• EndNote Web tab displaying instead of EndNote X6 tab
• EndNote tab/toolbar not installed
• What is CWYW?

 Exporting from Databases

• How to do it
• Errors in exported references
• Does the article come too?
• Mac problem
• Import filters

 Formatting Word Documents

• Wrong style in reference list
• Plain text version
• Thesis chapters
• Computer code showing
• Standalone reference list

 In Text Citations

• Curly brackets
• Delete a citation
• Add page number(s)
• In text citations shifted
• Omit author from in text citation
• Author initials or first names
• Cite a secondary source
• Select Matching Reference error

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My perfect in text citations are now showing in curly brackets like this {Smith, 2002 #27} and my reference list has disappeared. How can I fix this?

Your in text citations have reverted to the unformatted state. This can be a result of a spurious computer signal or some other such gremlin. It can also be done deliberately by clicking Convert to Unformatted Citations on the EndNote tab or toolbar in Word.

In the Word document:

On the EndNote tab, click Update Citations and Bibliography (for Mac: Format Bibliography) and wait while the formatting process completes.

For more information about formatted and unformatted citations, consult Sections 11.6 and 11.7 on pages 31-32 of our Using EndNote X6 guides:

Windows version
Mac version

The reference list in my Word document is not in the style I want. How can I change it?

The wrong reference style is selected in Word

In the Word document: 

  1. Open the Format Bibliography dialog box from the EndNote tab or toolbar
  2. Check to see which output style is showing. Use the drop-down menu (and, if necessary, the Browse button) to select the style of your choice, e.g. APA 6th - AUT X6
  3. Click OK and your reference list (bibliography) will be re-formatted in the chosen style

For more details about this process, as well as ways of altering the layout of a reference list, consult Section 11.3 on page 28 of our Using EndNote X6 guides:

Windows version
Mac version

Note: Using Word 2007 or 2010 with Windows, the current reference style is also displayed on the EndNote X6 tab. If the required style is not showing, use the drop-down menu to select this style. This will instantly reformat your reference list (bibliography). 

There are some references and in text citations that I just can't get right using EndNote. What should I do?

When I type corrections in the reference list or in text citations they are "undone" by EndNote. 

First, check our guide to using APA 6th with EndNote for the specific type of information resource you wish to reference. There may be a way of creating a correct reference for your difficult item. If there isn't, then you need to create a plain text version of your Word document so that you can make editorial changes that will persist and not be reversed by EndNote.

A plain text document will look just like your original but has no connection back to EndNote because the field codes have been removed. It can be successfully edited using the usual Word processes. To create a plain text version of your document:

  1. Click Convert Citations and Bibliography > Convert to Plain Text (Mac: Remove Field Codes)
  2. Click OK
  3. Save this new Word document under a suitable name. Note that it has no EndNote coding (grey) in it.  Edit it as you would any other Word document
  4. Your original EndNote formatted document remains just as you last saved it

Note: you CANNOT convert the plain text Word document back to an EndNote formatted document, so we recommend that you only create the plain text version as a final step when you have completed your piece of writing

For more details about creating a plain text version, consult Section 11.9 on pages 32-33 of our Using EndNote X6 guides:

Windows version
Mac version

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My thesis chapters are saved in separate Word documents. How do I merge them into one document and keep everything right with EndNote?

Many thesis/dissertation authors prefer to write each chapter as a separate Word document and only combine them into one document near the end of the whole project. Working this way, you would have a reference list (bibliography) at the end of each chapter rather than one at the end of the complete thesis/dissertation.

On completion of your thesis/dissertation, combine the chapters into one document with a single reference list at the end:

1.     To be on the safe side, make a copy of each chapter document. Work with the copies, saving the original as your backup

2.     Open each copied document and unformat the citations by clicking Convert Citations and Bibliography and then Convert to Unformatted Citations on the EndNote tab (Mac: Convert to Unformatted Citations on the EndNote toolbar). The reference list will disappear and all the in text citations will revert to temporary citations

3.     Paste the Word documents together in the correct order to create a new document and save this. Check that page breaks, etc are correct

4.     Now recreate the reference list in the final document by clicking Update Citations and Bibliography (Mac: Format Bibliography)

Golden rule: ensure you are using the SAME version of a SINGLE EndNote library as you write each chapter

For more details, and screenshots, consult pages 14-15 of our EndNote Value Added workshop notes

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My Word document looks like computer code with lots of extra characters. Can it be fixed?

Your Word document looks like this:

{ADDIN EN.CITE <EndNote><Cite><Author>Rae</Author><Year>2008</Year><RecNum>1</RecNum><DisplayText>(Rae &amp; Cochrane, 2008)</DisplayText>,record><rec-number>1</rec-number><foreign-keys><key app=”EN” db-id=”tf5xtwax7apxpheewsvvs2apa9e9dt9avd2z”>1</key></foreign-keys><ref-type

You are seeing the hidden field codes in Word, i.e. the hidden code EndNote uses to hold the reference information for your formatted citations.

Quick fix: to hide the field codes and return your Word document to its normal appearance, hold down the ALT key and press the function key F9 (for Mac: Option+F9)

If this does not work, use the Word tools to hide the field codes - follow the instructions for your version of Word here.

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How do I create just a list of references, for example to use as a reading list?

To create a standalone list of references from your EndNote library (rather than a document with in text citations and a reference list at the end):

  1. Open your EndNote library and check that your preferred reference style is showing on the top toolbar. If it is not, use the drop-down arrow and Select Another Style...
  2. Highlight the references you want to include in the list by using Ctrl+click (Cmd+click for Mac). Or, to include the whole library: click Edit > Select All (shortcut: Ctrl+A or Cmd+A)
  3. Click Edit > Copy Formatted (shortcut: Ctrl+K or Cmd+K)
  4. Open a Word document: click Edit > Paste to produce the list of selected references
  5. You may edit this document using normal Word editing - it is not linked to the EndNote library

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