Skip to Main Content

Bibliographic Management at PU: an overview: Mendeley

Which citation management program is best for you?



"Mendeley is a free reference manager and academic social network that can help you organize your research, collaborate with others online, and discover the latest research." (  It is an original in using crowd-sourcing technique to build a knowledge base of citations by letting each user create his/her own database of references.  Device agostic if a device can download the desktop software and/or use the internet to open the database online.  Synching between device and web is a key to the resource's effectiveness.


  • Build your own bibliographic database.
  • Organize your PDFs.
  • Insert citations from Mendeley into word processor.
  • Share research with others – references; papers; your comments/notes about papers.
  • Use both Mendeley Desktop and Mendeley Web.


  • to Download Desktop version.
  • Will see three columns: 1st navigation/recently added/groups; 2nd list of references; 3rd details of one selected reference.
  • Sign In tab to log into the Web version.
  • Sync the two versions of Mendeley > In Desktop Tools toolbar, click Sync Library.
  • Two other installations to do, from Tools menu. 
  • Install Web Importer; Install Plug-In for Microsoft Word.


1.  Import or drag PDF

  • Click Add Documents [toolbar at upper left]. Navigate to PDF on computer and select.
  • This imports PDF and fills in fields for the reference in Mendeley. 
  • Or - you can drag a PDF into Mendeley.
  • Check to see if reference information is correct.  Mendeley may say “These details need reviewing” and can connect to Google Scholar or PubMed to complete the reference.

2.  Import from Database

  • After installation of the Web Importer into Mendeley – puts Import to Mendeley into your Web Browser Bookmarks or Toolbar.
  • Then in PubMed, for example, at your bookmark > Import to Mendeley captures the reference.
  • Then In Mendeley Desktop, clicking Sync will bring the citation into Desktop.
  • [If want access to your PDFs in both Web and Desktop - Go to Desktop, select All Documents > select Edit Settings > Save and Sync. Check Mendeley Web account for PDFs.]

3.  Export from Bibliographic Database

  • With in EBSCO databases, for example, Use “Direct Export in RIS Format (e.g. CITAVI, EasyBib, EndNote, ProCite, Reference Manager, Zotero).”  And then at Open With prompt, navigate to and choose Mendeley.

4.  Other Mendeley Users (Mendeley knowledge base)

  • Mendeley Web – can search across universe of Mendeley users for citations of papers.
  • Can add citations to your database.  And check for your access to the full text/PDF.

5.  Manually [and assist from PubMed or Google Scholar]

  • File Menu > Add Entry Manually > type PMID [retrieves citation] > Save.  [Or type into fields.]

6.  Export from Other Bibliographic Managers

  • For example Export from EndNote using XML type and RIS output style.  Then drag into Mendeley Desktop.



Download/Install Microsoft Word Plug-In by

Mendeley Tools menu > Install MS Word Plug In [follow instructions]. 

After installation -

  1. In Word, put cursor at place in text where you want the citation.
  2. In Word’s ribbon, go to References tab and that displays Mendeley within Word.
  3. At the Mendeley panel in Word References tab display, click Insert Citation.  Search “My Library.” Or can Go To Mendeley to select citation. Search, Select, and click OK.
  4. To generate the full references at the end of your paper, click in document where you want the bibliography.  Click within Mendeley tab – Insert Bibliography.
  5. To change journal style. Highlight references in your Bibliography.  Click in Mendeley tab> and then to the Styles pull down menu.
  6. To add more styles into pull down menu - More Styles > Get More Styles > Install.



  • Typing in Search bar finds that text in your records as well as in PDFs



  • Highlighting. Open a PDF at a Mendeley record > in Toolbar, click Highlight Text > move cursor in PDF text and see highlighting.
  • Notes. In Toolbar, click Add Note.  Sticky appears for you to type in.


Free Mendeley owner and two others in a group for a total of three

  • In panel on left – Create Group.
  • Give Group a Name and Group Description. Select Public or Private. 
  • With Private, have option to invite members.
  • At the Members tab in the Group –
  • Choices: “Find Contacts on Mendeley” or “Invite Collaborators via e-mail.”
  • You can drag references/annotated documents into a Group.
  • Group references and documents are shared when you Sync Library.
  • Notes from each collaborator appear in a different color.