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EndNote: Importing text files from databases

A guide to using EndNote X9

Importing text files from databases

Importing files into EndNote with an import filter

Direct export often has a limited record ceiling (varying with the source) while saving exports to a file first often offers a broader range. When you need to export large sets of references from a source, use the method:

  • In the database: save to file  
  • In EndNote: File > import > Choose the right import filter
  • Mac users: Click on Options, in the left corner at the bottom to open the Options box


What is an import filter?

An import filter is a piece of software that translates references, downloaded from a bibliographic database into a format that EndNote can understand. The filter tells EndNote where information must be placed: authors in author field, title in title field, etc. With import filters EndNote can place references uniformly.


Web of Science

Step 1: exporting references from Web of Science (WOS)

  • Check individual records, individual page(s) or do nothin​g
  • Unfold the Export menu
  • Select: Save to EndNote Desktop

  • Select Record content: Full Record

  • Click on 'Export'
  • Save your records with SAVE as '. . .' in the right place

Step 2: Importing references into EndNote

  • Go to EndNote
  • Go to top bar > File > Import > File
  • Click on Choose to select the file
  • Import option: Web of Science Core Collection (Clarivate)

If you can't see the import filter in the drop down menu: click on Other Filters and search for the filter Web of Science Core Collection.

PubMed (Medline)

Step 1: Export references from PubMed

  • If you want to export all references, don't make any selection
  • Click at the top right 'Send to'
  • Choose destination: 'Citation manager'
  • Click on: Create File
  • Save as: '. . . '


Step 2: Import Pubmed references into EndNote

Go to EndNote

Importing the references:

  • Go to top bar > File > Import >File
  • Choose: the text file from PubMed  
  • Select the Import optionPubMed (NLM)



EBSCO Databases

Step 1. Export references from EBSCO databases (e-mail):

  • Choose the  Export tool
  • Select e-mail
  • Enter your E-mail address and a subject
  • Important: Choose the RIS Format ! 

  • You'll be emailed a link to a zipped file of your records in RIS format. This can take a few minutes. In case you did not receive the mail: Check your spam folder.

Step 2. Import into EndNote

  • Double click on the zipped file to open it.
  • Click 'Add' to import the file into EndNote.

ProQuest Databases

Step 1: Export references from ProQuest (100 records at a time)

  • Select Records
  • Choose: Save -> Choose Format RIS

Step 2: Importing references into EndNote

  • Go to EndNote
  • Go to top bar > File > Import > File
  • Click on Choose to select the file
  • Import option: Reference Manager (RIS)