Political Science

This guide provides information about conducting research and library resources for students studying political science.

Library Research Guide

Write-N-Cite and RefWorks Citation Manager

When writing in Microsoft Word, use Write-n-Cite or RefWorks Citation Manager connect to your RefWorks account in order to create citations, footnotes, endnotes, and bibliographies/reference lists. 

Information and links for downloading Write-n-Cite and RefWorks Citation Manager can be found when you are signed in to RefWorks. Look under the Tools option.


screenshot of link to Tools in RefWorks

Windows Users:

Word 2016 - download RefWorks Citation Manager from inside Word, through Microsoft Store.

For all earlier versions of Word, download Write-n-Cite from inside RefWorks under Tools.

Microsoft Office 365 users:

Install Write-N-Cite to Microsoft Word.

  • Before downloading, be sure you have the latest full desktop version of Microsoft Office on your computer. K-Staters can download here
  • After downloading Write-N-Cite, restart your computer.

Mac Users:

Mac users with Office/Word 2016, install RefWorks Citation Manager from inside Word through Microsoft Store. Follow these instructions to installing Office ProPlus.

For all earlier versions of Word, download Write-n-Cite from inside RefWorks under Tools. Follow these instructions. The system should recognize you are using a Mac and show you the appropriate option for your computer. If not, select Other Versions and choose your version of Mac.

Screenshot of Other Versions options to download Write-N-Cite  

Creating a Bibliography

Create a bibliography from the All Documents area, a specific folder, or a search results list.

Navigate to the folder you want to use (or All Documents area or run a search and select items) and click the Create bibliography icon image of the Create bibliography icon

You can create a bibliography for selected references or for all of the reference in the folder (or in All Documents if that's the view you are in).

Screenshot showing the Create bibliography menu


Next, search for your output style (citation style) and select it. A formatted bibliography will be displayed in your browser for you to copy and paste into any word processing software.

Screenshot showing search box for citation styles


Working with Write-N-Cite

You can get started with Write-N-Cite easily and view the formatting of your in-text citations, footnotes and bibliography while you are writing your paper.

To get started (this list acts as a table of contents for this box. Clicking on a link will take you to that section in this box. It will not open in a new window.)

  • Click "RefWorks” in your MS Word ribbon to launch Write-N-Cite
  • Select an output style
  • Insert in-text citations or footnotes and your bibliography
  • Save your paper


 Step 1. Launch Write-N-Cite

Note:  The first time you launch Write-N-Cite, you must be connected to the internet in order to log in to your RefWorks library and sync it with Write-N-Cite.

Tip:  In most cases, there is no need to log out of Write-N-Cite when you are not using it. If you are using Write-N-Cite on a public computer, log out of Write-N-Cite when you complete your work. If someone does use a computer while you are still logged in to Write-N-Cite, they will not be able to change anything in your account since Write-N-Cite doesn’t have any features to edit your records in RefWorks.

Logging In To Write-N-Cite:

1. Click RefWorks from the Microsoft Word ribbon. 

Screenshot of the RefWorks tab in Word

2. Click Log In.

Screenshot showing the Log In link

 3. Click "RefWorks" and enter your email address and RefWorks password and click "Login".

Screenshot of the RefWorks login screen from Write-N-Cite

The first time you log in to Write-N-Cite, it will automatically “sync” with your RefWorks library. This may take a few seconds. It is downloading your references and collections. Any time you make changes to your RefWorks records you can click Sync my Database and your new and/or edited items will be added to Write-N-Cite.

While syncing, you can still access all of Word’s functionality, but the Write-N-Cite functions will not become active until syncing has finished.

Step 2.  Selecting Your Output Style

The first thing you will want to do is select an output style (citation style). In-text citations, footnotes, and your bibliography will be displayed in your document while you write your paper in the style you have selected. You can change the style later if you need to.

1. Click the Style drop down. You will see a list of RefWorks' styles you have used recently.

2. Click on the style name.

Change your output style and the formatting of your paper at any time by clicking on another Style in the list and selecting a new output style. Access other Styles by clicking Select Other Style at the bottom of the list.

Screenshot showing a list of citation style options

Step 3.  Inserting Citations or Footnotes and Your Bibliography

Note:  You may want to sync your RefWorks library with Write-N-Cite if you have recently added items you want to use in your paper. Click the Sync my database icon to download new or updated items.

When you are ready to insert an in-text citation or footnote into your paper:

1. Click the Insert Citation and Insert New option to launch the insert/edit citation box. If you have used Write-N-Cite before, you may see recently used citations listed above the Insert New option. You can select citations displayed from this list or find another citation using the Insert New option. 

Screenshot of Write-N-Cite's insert citation option

2. Once the Insert/Edit Citation box displays, you can access your records by Folder or by searching. The Search box will search every field.

Screenshot showing results of a search in a folder

3.  Click on the record you wish to insert into your paper. You will see a preview of the formatted citation in your current Output Style.

Screenshot of the Insert/Edit Citation box

Tip:  Add more references to the citation using the plus icon, remove them by using the minus icon, or reorder the references with the up and down arrows in the Compose Citation area.

Screenshot of the Preview Citation and Compose Citation options

4. Click OK to insert your formatted citation into your paper.

5. To insert a footnote instead of an in-text citation, click the Make Footnote box in the Edit References area. Once you make a footnote and finish editing the citation, you will not be able to undo this action. However, you can always add a new in-text citation.

Screenshot of the Make Footnote option

6. You can insert your bibliography anywhere in your paper while you are writing. Click Bibliography Options, Insert Bibliography.  Note: the bibliography will be inserted wherever the cursor is in your paper. 

Screenshot of the Insert Bibliography option


Screenshot of a Word document with a bibliography

Click Remove Bibliography and re-insert if it you need to change the location.

Screenshot of the Remove Bibliography option

Step 4. Save your formatted paper (you should really save it often while you are writing!).