The following content is adapted from an email sent to LibNews-L by Professor Katie Newman on 8/9/07, "Using RefWorks' RefShare Feature" --

RefShare is a feature of RefWorks. It is a convenient way to share your bibliography of citations with students, faculty, or colleagues -- no matter where they're located.

Here are some examples of how librarians and other researchers may make use of RefShare:

  1. You would like to consult with a faculty member regarding possible books to purchase.
    • Search WorldCat, export the references to a RefWorks folder, and send the RefShare link to the folder to the faculty member.
    • There's a "comment" feature, so they can even attach comments to the various records.
  2. You have a large ProCite or EndNote database, and you'd like to share it with others.
    • Export the citations from the client-based file into RefWorks, then use RefShare to share the database with the world!
    • The Illinois Natural History Survey Library is in the process of converting bibliographies originally maintained in ProCite and is posting them to the web using RefShare. For an example, seeINHS Staff Bibliography, 1870-present, which lists publications of Illinois Natural History Survey researchers.
    • Contact Susan Braxton for info about exporting from ProCite into RefWorks.
  3. Or maybe you'd just like to start a database of citations for your faculty.
    • Create the listing in RefWork and then share it with your faculty. You can keep the resource updated -- the link to the bibliography will remain constant. You can create as many RefWorks accounts as you like, so you could even give them access to the real RefWorks file (just share the password info).
  4. Or maybe you're working with some colleagues on a paper, and you'd like to share some citations with them.
  5. A faculty member would like the students in a class to read a selection of articles.
    • The faculty member could create a RefWorks folder with the citations in it. He could then embed the URL to the RefShare folder on the class syllabus web page.
    • Upon clicking on the link the students would be taken to the folder and would see DISCOVER links that would point them to the full-text version of the articles.
    • Note: the professor could even keep track of how many times the folder has been accessed, since there is a simple statistics function built-in to the shared folders.
  6. You're going to be leading a one-hour BI session for graduate students who are focused on researching a particular topic. You can pre-create for them a list of references in their topic. You can even modify the output style so they can see which databases the citations came from.
    • Give them the URL of the RefShare folder so they can browse the citations after the lecture and prove to themselves the worth of searching more than one database!
    • Here's an example to such a database on "yerba mate" - Switch from the "Standard view" to "Food - kc" view, and you'll see the databases from which the records came.

If you've have some other examples of how one can use RefShare, please "share" them! -- share it personally with just one person (send them the URL) or put it up in the University's RefShare area, and share it with everyone.

How to share a RefWorks folder

1. Create a RefWorks folder with the citations you wish to share.
    Note: instructions for importing records from most of our databases and Online Catalog are available at here

2. Click on Folders / Share Folders. You will see a list of all your folders.

3. Click on the "Share Folder" button next to the folder you wish to share.

4. By default, the following options are set, but may be changed:

   Allow export
   Allow print
   Allow bibliographies
   Show Custom Output Styles
   Enable option to email me (Your email address isn't "shared" -- but a form will be available for them to email a message to you.)
   Optionally, you can allow users to "comment", to be able to send you an email, and more.

5. The " URL of the Shared Folder" is what you could send to a colleague or post on your website to point to the shared file.

6. If you want to share the folder with everyone in the University's Shared Area, select that option.
   You don't need to put your folder in the University's Shared Area in order to share it with someone -- you can just give them the URL for the folder.
   Please note that both the yerba mate folder as well as the bibliography created by the INHS librarians are listed in the University's Shared Area.

7. It is highly recommended that you give the shared folder a title and write some information about the folder in the "information" box. This information is viewable in the University's Shared Area.

You might want to reveal that you are the author of the bibliography.