The bulk PDF Import tool is a premium feature available on all paid and Cochrane reviews that enables you to upload all of your full text review PDFs at once.

To use the tool, follow the three steps below.

Step 1: Export full text review reference list from Covidence.

A. From your review's summary page in Covidence, go to the Export studies tool to the right-hand side of 'Review Summary.’

B. Select ‘Full text review’ under ‘Stage’ and then pick EndNote.

C. Click ‘Export' and download the file from the 'Recent exports' list below.


Please note: If you don't want to export the full list of references in Full Text Review but only those which do not already have full texts attached, you can do this by selecting 'Studies missing full text' from the dropdown menu under 'Stage':


Step 2: Import the references into EndNote, Zotero, or Mendeley and link associated PDFs to the references.

A. Import the references to your selected reference manager.

  • Tip: For Endnote users, choose the Import Option for Reference Manager (RIS).

B. Find the PDFs and attach them to the corresponding reference.

  • This can be done manually, or by using automated find full text feature available in many reference managers.
  • Now is a good time to make sure that all of your associated PDFs are stored in one location, or consider using an automated find-PDF feature where PDFs are automatically filed by your reference manager in a programme-specific directory. Doing so will make Step 3E much easier!

C. Use your reference manager to rename the PDFs attached to the references.

  • Tip: Use Title-Year formatting for best performance

Step 3: Export the references from your reference manager and import into Covidence.

A. Export the list of references from the reference manager in EndNote XML format.

  • Tip: It’s helpful to have the XML file only contain the references that will have PDFs uploaded in Covidence, as the system may become ‘clogged’ if an entire reference library is imported and then very few PDF imports follow.
  • Tip: if you're using EndNote, select "all fields" when exporting.

B. Navigate to your review summary page on Covidence and click on the ‘Full text screening’ section.

C. Click ‘continue,’ and then the ‘Bulk upload PDFs’ button.

D. Upload your exported XML file by dragging it to the screen or selecting the file via the ‘select file’ button.

E. Once the file has processed, you will see two numbers: the number of studies matched against your full text screening list (left), and the number of studies which also had a PDF attached (right).

Now click the blue 'Select files...' button in the grey box and select the PDFs associated with your references from your computer.

  • Tip: EndNote automatically stores PDFs in individual folders. To avoid having to individually open each of these folders, search for the extension .pdf while in your library's PDF folder. You can also use a folder merger program.
  • Tip: If you're using Windows, type * into the search bar in explorer to automatically view all sub-folder contents.
  • If you are using EndNote, the precise directory will be specific to your computer and to your EndNote settings, but typically it is somewhere like Documents >> My EndNote >> PDFs.

F. The PDFs will now be uploaded and automatically attached to the appropriate reference. They may take a couple of minutes to appear in your review.