This page assumes you have decided to use EndNote as a tool to manage your references.

If you have not yet fully decided on EndNote?

There are many free referencing tools available over the Internet which may also be worth exploring – two popular services are Mendeley and Zotero – talk to your colleagues about the referencing systems they use. Also see the library guide entitled 'Managing References with Web-based Applications' which contains some advice on how to choose a web based system.

To assist you with using Endnote, we have produced the following list of frequently asked questions.

General Questions

"What does Endnote do?"

EndNote allows you to collect references from many different databases and keep them in one place to be used when writing your assignments. Much of this is done electronically by importing references automatically into EndNote from each service (including Google Scholar), although a certain amount of editing may still be needed.

EndNote can then be used to build a bibliography in a variety of output styles including APA 6, MLA, Vancouver and Oscola. Use the plug-in “Cite While You Write” integrated into Microsoft Office, to format in-text citations in your work and have your Reference List built at the same time according to the style you choose.

EndNote can also produce free-standing bibliographies which can be added to documents – useful for reading lists, publication lists and bibliographies.

“What is the difference between EndNote as a Desktop package and EndNote Online?”

EndNote X6 is the professional package available on the University network in the Apps folder. It is not currently being updated. It offers thousands of output styles and the option to create one’s own style. It can only be used on University owned computers and laptops.

EndNote Online is a simpler online version which allows you to work anywhere and on any machine with an internet connection. Whilst at the University you qualify for extra output styles and slightly more storage space if you register via “institutional access”.

Note whilst a student it is possible to buy the professional current version of at a reduced price. Details about the current version and price can be found here:

"I am an undergraduate / postgraduate / PhD student. Which version of EndNote should I use?"

It is recommended that students on undergraduate and taught postgraduate courses use EndNote Online. This is an easier package to learn and is very portable due to it being a cloud based service. See library guide ‘Getting started with EndNote Online’

For students studying for an MPhil, PhD or a professional doctorate the choice rather depends on several criteria including:

  • How many publications you might be writing as the Desktop allows much more flexibility with output styles
  • How much time you want to dedicate to learning the intricacies of the system

Although it is no longer possible to synchronise between EndNote X6 and EndNote Online it is easy to export/import references between the two services.

Can EndNote read a Word document to extract the references into an EndNote Library?"

Yes you can do this with Word 2007 onwards, provided that the references have been entered using the Words own referencing function.

If, however, you have simply typed the references into Word you will have to be cut and paste between the applications.

"I have previously used a different reference management package. Can I convert to Endnote easily?"

Yes. Most referencing packages allow for structured export of data. Both EndNote X6 and EndNote Online should be able to accept imports/downloads from Reference Manager™, Mendeley or Zotero.

"I need to produce a bibliography in a journal style that is not available in EndNote. How can I do this?"

EndNote X6 contains a huge number of Output Styles but there will always be a few missing. If you can supply details of the Output Style it may be possible to create one especially for you, or to find one that has been created elsewhere. A limited number of styles can also be added to EndNote Online.

"I need a Connect File that is not available in EndNote. How can I obtain this?"

Connect files often fail due to institutional firewalls, look for alternative download/export options to get files which you can import into EndNote. If these do not exist then we can check for working connect files.

Support Queries

"Who provides support for EndNote at the University of Portsmouth?"

Installations and technical issues can be directed to the IS Service Desk ( or 7777).

In the event that neither party is able to help you, your problem will be referred to the UK vendor who provides support for EndNote to all UK purchasers.

"How is EndNote made available to users at the University of Portsmouth?"

EndNote X6 (Desktop version) is available for use on University owned computers to all staff and students via the University Apps system. Once downloaded from the Apps store you will need to run the “Configure EndNote” file from the EndNote folder to get “Cite While You Write” EndNote functions installed on your Microsoft Word Ribbon.

EndNote Online can be found from the “Web of Science” database ( where EndNote is found on the top toolbar. This direct link can also be used: You will need to register an account. Please follow Institutional route if offered as that will give you extra output styles. Remember to download the “Cite While You Write” plug-in to be able to use EndNote with Microsoft Word.

“Is any training available?”

Lecturers that are keen for their students to use EndNote Online or EndNote X6 often arrange introductory sessions for their students in conjunction with their Faculty librarians.

"Can EndNote be installed on a computer that I use off-campus?"

If it is a University owned PC or Mac it can be installed free of charge by Information Services.

Whilst a student at the University you can purchase your own copy of EndNote Desktop at a reduced rate. See this UK Sales site .

"I have previously used an earlier version of EndNote. Will this cause me problems?"

No. The latest version of EndNote can read and convert EndNote Libraries even from very old versions of the software.

"I need an Import File that is not available in EndNote. How can I obtain this?"

EndNote contains a huge number of Import Files but there will always be a few missing. If you can supply details of the Import File you need it may be possible to create one especially for you or to find one that has been created elsewhere.

"When trying to use 'Cite While You Write' I get an error message saying 'Invalid class string'."

The 'Invalid class string' can be caused if Word was started before EndNote X6 the first time EndNote X6 was used.
To remedy this:

  • Close all programs
  • Start EndNote and open a Library
  • Start Word, open a new, blank document and try to insert a reference.

If this course of action doesn’t solve the problem you will need to contact the / 7777.

They will take control of your PC remotely after deleting the following registry keys:

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\ISIResearchSoft\EndNote

Once these keys have been deleted you should start the software in the order mentioned above.

"How can I access my references off-campus without buying a copy of EndNote?"

You can access your references off-campus by using EndNote Online, a trimmed-down version of EndNote that runs on a web site.

Enter your email address to receive a notification when the article is updated
Email Address

Was this article helpful
Thank you for your feedback
How can we improve?