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A guide to using the citation manager RefWorks

Reading and Annotating Documents in RefWorks

In order to read documents in RefWorks, you need to upload a PDF into your RefWorks library that has been run through an Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software for RefWorks to recognize the text. Most recent articles are already in this format. Information on downloading PDFs into RefWorks is found on the Uploading Documents into RefWorks page.

Instructions for running your PDF through an OCR reader are found below. While Iona University does not provide the Adobe Suite to students, a few computers in Iona University computer labs offer Adobe products, including computers in Ryan Library. Instructions will be provided for both Adobe Acrobat and the free online service, OCR space.

Annotating Documents in RefWorks

You can annotate any of your own documents saved in RefWorks. You may be able to annotate documents shared with you if you have been given permission to annotate and/or modify the document. 

To annotate a document, select the reference with the document and click the "Read" button in the viewing pane. The document will display in the reader.   Click the Document Notes icon document notes icon from the reader menu and enter your notes. 

document notes icon with an arrow pointing to notes made in document

If you wish to make highlight areas of text, select the text area you wish to make a note for using the Highlight Selected Text icon text iconand select words of text by clicking and dragging through the lines of text.

vortex solutions highlighted in article

To remove highlighting, click the highlighted area until the delete option displays.  Click "Delete Conversation".

Delete conversation highlighted from drop-down menu

You may also click and drag using the Comment icon comment iconto highlight the text and associate a comment with it.

arrow pointing from comment icon to box for comment text

You can change the color of your note and the associated highlighted text, edit your note or you can delete your note completely by clicking on the three dots at the far right in the note.

arrow pointing to three dots with drop-down menu of four colors to edit comment

A note indicator will also appear to the far right of the selected area and you may access the note in the manner as well. 

an arrow pointing from a red box on the side of the article to the note

Once you type a note, it is automatically saved.

Prepare to Read in RefWorks

  1. Open your PDF in Adobe Acrobat (Available on workstation in Ryan Library - Ask at the Help Desk)

  2. Click on the “Tools” button in the upper right-hand corner of the top task bar 

  3. Under the “Create & Edit” subsection, find the “Scan & OCR” tool 

  4. Click “Open” 

  1. The Scan & OCR tool is now enabled on your open PDF. Find the “Recognize Text” option in the Scan & OCR tool bar 

  1. Open the Recognize Text drop-down menu 

  1. Choose the “In This File” option for one PDF file 

  1. A tool bar will open below, with a “Recognize Text” button highlighted in blue. Click on the Recognize Text button 

  1. Adobe will then scan the file to ensure that characters can be digitally read by screen-reading technologies. For larger files this may take some time 

  1. Save the file once the process is complete 

  1. Visit in your browser (The free online OCR will process a maximum of 10 pages) 

  1. Add your document under "Upload Image or PDF File" 

  1. Ensure that the box is checked beside "Auto-enlarge content" 

  1.  Under Create Searchable PDF, select “Create searchable PDF with invisible text layer”  

  1. Under Select OCR Engine to Use, select “Use OCR Engine1”  

  1. Select “Start OCR!”  

  1.  After the process is complete, you will select the “Download Searchable PDF” link 

  1. Download the PDF 

  1. Upload this new OCRd PDF to your RefWorks library