EndNote is a reference management software that can be used on Windows and Macintosh computers. It allows you to create a collection of bibliographic records and files to use for your research and writing.

Type a record for a reference

An EndNote record has fields that are used for creating a reference such as Author, Year, Title, etc. There are also other fields that are for your research notes and other data. The fields you need use to create the reference will depend on the reference type. Consult the relevant referencing manual on the CQUniversity Referencing Guides page to find out what you need to include in the reference.

Journal Article is the default Reference Type. Click on the arrow at the right of the Reference Type box to select a different reference type (e.g. Book, Conference Proceedings, Map, Web Page, etc.).

This example is for a journal article from a database since it is one of the most commonly used reference types. Other reference types use the same process, but different fields.

  1. Open EndNote
  2. Click the New Reference icon to open a new blank record. Change the Reference Type to Electronic Article so the reference will include the DOI or URL.
  3. Click in the Author field and enter the author’s Surname, comma, then first name e.g. Hamnett, Hilary J
  4. If there is more than one author hit enter after each name to add a new line for the next name. Enter the name in the same format, e.g. Korb, Ann-Sophie
  5. Click in the Year field, or use the tab key to go down to it. Enter the year, e.g. 2017
  6. Go to the Title field. Enter the article name in sentence case, e.g. The Coffee Project revisited: Teaching research skills to forensic chemists.
  7. Tab down to the Journal field and enter the journal title exactly as it appears in the journal, e.g. Journal of Chemical Education. If the referencing style requires the short title, EndNote can do that. See Journal title abbreviations for your reference list for more information.
  8. In the Volume field, enter the volume number, e.g. 94
  9. In the Issue field, enter the issue number, e.g. 4
  10. In the Pages field enter the numbers only, e.g. 445-450
  11. Enter the DOI or URL
    • If your referencing style requires the URL, go to the URL field and paste the article URL or journal home page URL there, e.g. https://go.openathens.net/redirector/cqu.edu.au?url=https://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/acs.jchemed.6b00600
    • If your referencing style requires the DOI, go to that field and add the number, e.g. 10.1021/acs.jchemed.6b00600
  12. This is the end of the fields for referencing. Enter information in the other fields as desired, e.g. you could use the Label field to record where you searched and what your search terms were, or use the Access Date field to record the date you found the article.
  13. Save your new reference:
    • Windows: Click the green Save button in the top right to save the new record.
    • Mac: Open the File menu and select Save or use Command S.
  14. Close the reference by clicking on the X button in the top right-hand corner of the New Reference window.

Your newly created reference will now appear in the reference panel of your EndNote library. See manually attaching a file to a reference for how to attach the file.

Create a Figure record and attach a table or image file

Use this reference type for figures (diagrams, photographs, images, maps, graphs or charts, cartoons) stored as image files.

  1. Open EndNote
  2. Click the New Reference icon, or open the Reference menu and select New Reference.
  3. Change the Reference Type to Figure.
  4. Fill in the details of who created the image and where it was sourced from. (Created by, Year, Title, URL if there is one, details of the book or article you found it in, Author address, Creative Commons license,…) This won’t be displayed in your document, but it is useful for you to know because you will need copyright permission to use other’s figures in anything you want to publish yourself.
  5. Scroll down to the Figure field.
  6. Open the Reference menu in the New reference window.
  7. Go to Figure and select Attach Figure from the submenu. Navigate to the image in your files and open it.
    OR Drag and drop the image into the Figure field.
    You will see a thumbnail of the image displayed in the Figure field.
  8. Give your image a meaningful name in the Caption field. It is a good idea to include credits/attribution in the caption. When you insert this image into your document, the caption will be displayed.
  9. Save the reference.

NOTE: Only the original caption will be displayed with your figure in the body of your document. Updating the caption in EndNote after inserting the figure will not change it in your document.

Field entry tips

When you open an EndNote record for a reference, you will find labelled boxes or fields to enter details such as author names into. When you manually create a reference, you copy and paste or enter the data into the fields yourself. When you export records from a database, the fields are automatically populated. All records exported from databases need to be checked to ensure that the data they contain is correct.

Some field entry is for your research notes, or to keep track of where you searched and what your search terms were, of to add keywords to the record. It uses fields that don’t appear in the reference or citation.

Below are some guidelines for field entry.


Author and Editor fields: How to put names in

  • Be consistent when you enter Author/Editor names.
  • Always enter author and editor names one name per line. Hit the Enter key to get a new line.
  • Enter the full name if possible. It helps to distinguish between authors with the same surname. EndNote can abbreviate first and middle names. The preferred way is Family name, First name/Middle name. Options available include:
    • Brown, John Peter
    • Brown, J.P. (initials should be entered with a space or a full stop between them)
    • John Peter Brown (no comma)
    • J.P. Brown
  • Enter multiple word family names as:
    • de Rossi, Charles
  • Enter authors with titles such as ‘Jr’ or ‘III’ e.g. Alfred Smith Jr as:
    • Smith, Alfred, Jr.
  • When entering corporate authors, put a comma after the name:
    • Department of Education,
    • Apple Computer Inc.,
  • If a corporate author name includes a comma in the name itself, use two commas in place of the first comma:
    • University of California,, Irvine
  • Enter all author/editor names. EndNote will truncate with ‘et al’ as required by the bibliographic style.


Title field: For book titles, article titles and other titles in general

  • EndNote styles can change the capitalization of titles but it is best to capitalise titles in the same way you would like it to be appear in your bibliography.
  • It's generally best to use sentence case for titles and subtitles, with upper case for acronyms and the first letters of proper nouns.
  • Enter titles without any punctuation at the end, unless the title ends in a question mark or exclamation mark.
  • Do not press the Enter key while typing titles into EndNote – allow titles to wrap to the next line.


Journal, Magazine, Newspaper, and Periodical Title fields

Periodical titles are the exception to the general rules for titles.

  • Enter the name of the journal or magazine exactly as it appears on the journal or magazine.
    EndNote uses a Journals Term List to manage the journal title abbreviations for your reference list.
  • For newspapers, check your referencing guide. Enter the name of the newspaper title exactly as it appears in the newspaper, unless your referencing guide says to omit “The” from titles beginning with it. In that case, just type the rest of the title.


Volume, Issue and Pages fields

  • Only enter the numbers. EndNote will add anything else that is needed for your chosen style.
  • Do not use commas in numbers in the thousands.
  • Always type the full numbers for the pages. EndNote will display them as full or abbreviated numbers following the rules of whichever output style (referencing style) you select. For example: in CQU Harvard the page range will display as 1034-1041, but if you change to Vancouver, EndNote will rewrite the page range as 1034-41.


Date fields

  • Enter dates as you would like them to appear in your bibliography. This usually means the month is written as a word, e.g. July.
  • EndNote does not reformat dates.


Label field

  • The label field can be used as an addition field for categorising references. You could, for example, record the database + search string + search date, or reprint numbers.


Keywords field

  • Use the keywords field to store keywords that you want to associate with the reference.
  • Be consistent – use semicolons, or enter each keyword on a separate line


Notes, Research Notes and Abstract fields

  • The Notes, Research Notes, and Abstract fields can each hold up to 64 KB (about 16 pages of plain text).
  • Use the Notes/Research Notes fields to store personal reminders, quotations, and/or annotations.
  • You can also record the details of your searches in the Notes or Research Notes fields.