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What is RefWorks?

RefWorks is an online research management, writing and collaboration tool designed to help researchers gather, organize, store and share information and to generate citations and bibliographies.

NEW - As of February 2019 New Refworks users may need an activation code at times. The link to the activation code is below.

Activation Code

New RefWorks is now available!

The NEW RefWorks introduces a refined user experience to reference management software for researchers so they can manage references, create papers even faster and collaborate easily with others. The new RefWorks platform is now available for all U of A students and faculty. The current (legacy) RefWorks platform is unaffected: new accounts may be created and existing RefWorks accounts remain unchanged. The new RefWorks continues to be updated throughout 2017. The legacy RefWorks platform is expected to retire in 2018.

To create a NEW RefWorks account using your email / login:

To learn more about features of new RefWorks, please see

Transitioning to New RefWorks

Choose from the following options for using NEW RefWorks:

  1. Are you an existing RefWorks user? This may be the case if you've created an RefWorks account prior to June 30, 2016. Old version of RefWorks is now referred to as legacy RefWorks.
    • If yes, and you are using Write and Cite with MS Word to draft your paper/dissertation/thesis project, we recommend that you continue to use legacy RefWorks until you are finished. 
    • If no, then create a new account using your email at You can maintain both legacy and new RefWorks accounts in parallel. Legacy RefWorks will be available until sometime in 2018. 
    • You can easily start moving references from legacy RefWorks to new using the “Import References” function.
  2. Are you new to RefWorks? 

RefWorks Login

For Legacy RefWorks users who had accounts BEFORE June 18, 2015:

  • If you are trying to access Write-N-Cite v. 3 off-campus and require the Group Code, please contact the library.
  • Write-N-Cite 4 / ProQuest for Word update is needed
  • Adjustments to Microsoft Word are required to continue working on Word documents started before June 18, 2015. Use the following tip sheets to make the adjustments:

University of Alberta Libraries - University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2R3 - We are located on Treaty 6 / M├ętis Territory.