Answered By: Cindy Schmidt
Last Updated: Aug 20, 2018     Views: 116

The best method for exporting the record for a meeting abstract to RefWorks varies greatly.

EMBASE, Scopus, and SciFinder are among the literature databases that index poster/presentation abstracts from selected meetings.   If you can find a record for the abstract of interest in one of these databases, use the methods for exporting to RefWorks that are used for any record in that database (see

Sometimes, the publisher of the meeting abstract  makes an electronic record for a meeting abstract available for export to RefWorks. 

  1. The method for export will vary from publisher to publisher.  A common format is outlined below:A screenshot of a publisher's "Download to Citation Manager" page with an arrow pointing to the "RefWorks" link.
  • If you click on "RefWorks," a direct export to RefWorks will be initiated.  This will not work if you have pop-up blockers activated.  So, if you don't see the RefWorks login page appear and/or see the reference appear in your already open RefWorks account, look for any sign of activated pop-up blockers (these may be blockers intrinsic to the browser or in a toolbar like the "Google toolbar"), deactivate the pop-up blockers for the site in question, and try again.
  •  If you click on the link to download a "RefWorks format" file, you will need to import the downloaded file. 
  1. Log into your RefWorks account,.
  2. Click on the import link.
  3. If the link mentions "RefWorks format," try setting the drop-down menus to "RefWorks tagged" format as shown below:
  4. A screenshot of the "Import References" box shows selection of the "RefWorks Tagged Format" option from the "Import Filter/Data Source" menu and the "Tagged Format" option from the "Database" menu.
  5. Other export file types commonly used by publishers are RIS and Bibtex.  For these file types the settings below will usually work:For RIS format:A screenshot of the "Import References" box shows selection of the "RIS Format" option from the "Import Filter/Data Source" menu and the "RIS Format" option from the "Database" menu.
  6. For Bibtex format:A screenshot of the "Import References" box shows selection of the "BibTeX" option from the "Import Filter/Data Source" menu and the "Multiple Databases" option from the "Database" menu.
  7. Click the button to locate and select your downloaded file.
  8. Click the "Import" button.
  9. When the import has completed, click "View last imported." 
  10. Has the import worked correctly?  If not, delete the reference. 
  11. If the informaiton is in the correct fields (authors in the authors line, etc), but gibberish is present where special characters like oemlauts and accents, try repeating the import.  This time, select "UTF-8" from the encoding drop-down menu.
  12. If information is not appearing in the correct boxes/fields, you may wish to try importing the file with other data source and database settings ( RIS or Bibtex settings) or, or you may wish to call the reference desk for help.


At times, it will be necessary to enter the reference in RefWorks manually. 

  1. Use the "+ New Reference" button.
  2. If the meeting proceedings were published in a journal, use the "reference type" drop-down to select "journal article" or "journal, electronic"
  3. If your abstract was only published in a proceedings booklet or book, use the "reference type" drop-down to select "conference proceedings."
  4. Use the "Help" link at the upper, right-hand side of the "Add new reference" window to gain access to the instructions for entering information.  You will need to scroll over 1/2 way down the "Help" screen to reach the instructions for the "authors" field.  It's important that you enter the authors as specified in the instructions and not according to the instructions for your bibliographic style.  After the instructions for entering authors, you will find instructions for entering other citation information.
  5. When you've entered all the information for your abstract, hit the "Save Reference" button.

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