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Citation Management Tools: Mendeley

A quick guide to using citation management tools.

What is Mendeley?

Mendeley is a free* reference manager and academic social network. It allows users to gather research, read and annotate PDFs, organize citations, and create bibliographies easily. 

Mendeley offers a word citation plug-in to quickly send bibliographies into word documents and is compatible with most browsers. There's also a Mendeley mobile app you can download to your device. Available for Android and iOS.

On the social network side, Mendeley allows users to upload their own papers and articles and share them with other users within the community. "Friending" other users allows you to share your work as well as work collaboratively with others in building bibliographies and collecting research. 

*A basic Mendeley account is free, but only includes 2 gigabytes of storage. Additional storage and features are available for a monthly fee

Tutorials and Info

Quick Start Guide

Quick Links

Exporting to Word

In order to export your bibliography or insert citations into Word, you'll need first make sure you have your Mendeley Desktop version up. 

  • Select all the citations you want to export and click Export to Word. This will send all the references to an XML file, usually named xml-export. 
  • Next, open your Word document.
  • Click the References tab. In order to access your saved citations, you'll need to click Manage Sources in the Citations & Bibliography box. 
  • Select the Browse option and find your xml-export file. Select the file you want and click OK.
  • You will now need to copy the information from the xml file to the Current List. Use SHIFT and click on all the citations you want to use, then hit Copy-->. When you're done, click Close

Now you can insert citations using the Insert Citation option, or add your bibliography using the Insert Bibliography option. 

How to Use Mendeley

3) While Mendeley Desktop is downloading, be sure to click "Register now for free"

4) Follow the prompts to create your free account. We recommend using your KCU email account.

5) After creating your account, you'll be logged in and see your Newsfeed screen. The menu at the top right of the screen lets you move to different sections of Mendeley.

6) Selecting the "Library" option takes you to your personal Mendeley Library. If you are using your personal device, be sure you click the "Install Now" button to add the Mendeley Pluggin for your browser.

How to Download Citations

There are 2 ways to download citations into Mendeley: 

  • Uploading to your Mendeley Library
  • Web Import

To upload a document to your library, click the blue "+Add" button on the top left side of your screen. This option lets you import a document from your computer, manually enter a citation, or import a citation that you've saved in .xml, .ris, or .bib format. Select how you wish to add your citation and follow the prompts. 

To save citations by web import, click the small red "M" located to the right of the website bar. Mendeley will work with almost all databases, including Clinical Key, Access Medicine, and even Google Scholar. Simply search for articles, click to open the articles or abstracts that you wish to save, then click the red "M". 

*This method will not work with PubMed. Please check out the page on importing citations from PubMed for that.*

This will open the Web Importer pop-up. Be sure you have the citation selected and click "Add Mendeley". This will save the citation directly to your personal Mendeley Library.