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Medical Scholarship: PDFs and Attaching Files

A handy guide for your medical scholarship adventures

Attaching and Viewing Files

Attaching files, such as PDFs, Word documents, PowerPoint or Excel files keeps the full text of your citations, and any supporting files easily accessible within your EndNote library. (See Finding Full Text to learn how to search for the full text PDFs of an article.) 

DO NOT attach figures, charts or graphs that you want to cite using the file attachment feature. (See Create and Edit Reference for more information.)


Attaching Files

There are multiple ways to attach PDFs and other files to the corresponding citation in your EndNote library. You can also attach multiple files to an EndNote citation.  

  • Drag the file over its corresponding record, release and it will automatically attach to the citation.

Highlight and drag file>Drop file over EndNote referenceUse the 

  • Use the Attach File button located at several places within an EndNote citation’s record. Highlight the citation you want to attach a file to and click the Attach File button.

Attach file button

Select the file you want to attach from your computer and click Open to attach the file to the citation

  • Using the navigation drop-down menu. Select the citation, go to Reference > File Attachment > Attach File

Attach file from Reference menu


When attaching PDFs the name of the PDF will automatically be changed to a combination of the author and the title of the reference. 

  • To change the attached filed naming convention go to Edit > Preferences > PDF Handling

Attaching PDF will change the name.

Importing multiple PDFs

EndNote can also import a PDF or a folder of PDFs into your library and automatically attach them to the corresponding reference provided the reference and the PDFs have DOIs.  

  • Go to File > Import > Folder.  Select "File" if you are only importing a single PDF or Folder if you are importing multiple PDFs stored in a folder.

Import PDFs

  • Use the Browse button to navigate to the file or folder where the PDFs reside, select any additional options you wish and click "Import" to import the PDFs.

Select folder of PDFs

Provided the citations in your EndNote library and the PDF both contain the DOI EndNote will automatically match and attach the PDF to its corresponding citation in your library. 

EndNote Help

Guide and videos tutorials from the creators of EndNote, Clarivate Analytics. 

Contact a Rowan Librarian specializing in EndNote

PDF Viewer

You can open, view, annotate and perform other functions to PDFs attached to references by clicking the PDF tab.