TeX - LaTeX Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of TeX, LaTeX, ConTeXt, and related typesetting systems. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a document which uses the standard \cite to cite a reference. At the end of my document, I have a \bibliography to place the References section there. However, the fellowship I'm applying to asks to submit the essay and references in different documents. Is there any way I can split the two from each other. That is to say, have the essay on one document, and the references on another?

There is one way I can think of doing this but it doesn't use LaTeX. I have a software that can print anything to PDF. I can use it to print the essay pages to a PDF and name it Essay.pdf, and then use it to print only the references seciton to PDF and name it Works_Cited.pdf.

I didn't know what Tags this question fell under, so I apologize if I chose the wrong tags.

share|improve this question
i'd suggest using the author-year style of citing so that the cross-references are somewhat comprehensible. run the job through completely enough times to get the citations resolved. before the bibliography, insert \clearpage and reset the page counter to start at 1. then use pdfpages to split the pdf file into the required two parts, and rename as appropriate. – barbara beeton Nov 5 '12 at 16:29
@barbarabeeton: could you please elaborate more on how to use pdfpages to split the pdf file into two parts? That's really what I need! – Amit Nov 5 '12 at 18:40
apologies. unfortunately, i have gotten pdfpages mixed up with something else; pdfpages is used to insert selected pages from another existing pdf file into a latex document. it's not designed to split pdf files. an approach that should work is to output your complete document to a dvi file, then use the dvipdfm program to split it into multiple pdf files. the manual for dvipdfm (texdoc dvipdfm if you are working with a tex live installation) is very clear. the options -o (output file name) and -s (page ranges) are the ones you need. – barbara beeton Nov 5 '12 at 19:29
Interesting! I'll look into that ASAP! Maybe submit an answer so I could mark it correct if it works? – Amit Nov 6 '12 at 17:18
up vote 1 down vote accepted

It seems it could be a simple job for biblatex.

Create a file (file1.tex)


Your essay with normal citation commands \cite{ref1,ref2}


then you can run bibexport yourfile to create a bib files with only the references cited in file1 and then use the following file.

share|improve this answer
I'll look into that! Thank you! – Amit Nov 6 '12 at 17:17
How will it know which references were cited in my file? – Amit Nov 6 '12 at 19:19
And wouldn't the order of the bib items in the .bib file matter in this scenario? – Amit Nov 6 '12 at 19:19
The order of the bib items in the .bib files does not matter. To know which references are cited the solution suggest to use the program bibexport which creates a new bib file with the references cited in the first file. – Guido Nov 6 '12 at 19:26
I get undefined control sequence \addbibresource – Amit Nov 6 '12 at 19:31

If you use a citation style that doesn't enumerate the citations such as with natbib and the authoryear option, then it becomes easy. Use your citations as normal.

Write your document as usual, with your citations. Don't include the bibliography. In separate (empty) LaTeX document, use \nocite{*} somewhere between \begin{document} and \end{document} to use all entries in your bibfile, and have a bibliography as normal. This document will now contain only a bibliography with all of the references in your chosen .bib file(s).

For example:


You might want to check out the natbib documentation.

share|improve this answer
Unfortunately, I do use a citation format that does enumerate the citations. I'm restricted to this format. For example, blah blah blah [1], another study found that blah blah [2]. – Amit Nov 5 '12 at 18:37

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.