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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Tips and instructions on getting started using the Mendeley reference management software.

Saving Citations

Mendeley Reference Manager allows you to create citations by pulling them automatically from the Internet using the Mendeley Web Importer, or by manually adding them within your Mendeley library.

Automatically Add References with Mendeley Web Importer

If you installed the Mendeley browser plugin, Mendeley Web Importer, you are able to automatically save citations to your Mendeley library while using your browser .

  1. Click on the icon for the Mendeley Web Importer, which should be to the right of your browser's address bar. It will look like a red box with the Mendeley logo in it.
  2. A pop-up window will appear on the righthand side of the window. You may be prompted to sign in with your Mendeley account.
  3. Within this window, you can:
    1. Select a destination Collection for the citation.
    2. Select one or more references detected on the page to add to your library.
    3. Edit references before adding them to your library by hovering over the specific reference and clicking on the blue pencil icon on the righthand side.
  4. Mendeley will automatically attempt to detect any PDFs and download these to your library as well.

Make sure to double check the information Mendeley fills in!

Manually Add Citations

You can also manually add a citation. This is useful if you have a citation for a physical item that is not online, or if the Mendeley Web Importer is having trouble detecting a citation on a page.

  1. Click on the button that says "+Add New" at the top of the lefthand column in the online or desktop version of the Mendeley Reference Manager.
  2. Select "Add entry manually".
  3. You can either use an identifier, like DOI of PMID, to have Mendeley automatically look for the metadata, or manually enter the information in the appropriate fields.
  4. Note that changing the "Reference Type" will change the fields you have available.

Creating Citations from PDFs

You can also create a citation by importing a PDF document. You can do this one of two ways:

  1. Use the +Add New button at the top of the lefthand column and select "File(s) from computer"
  2. Drag-and-drop PDFs from your computer to the Document Pane (the middle part of the window).

Mendeley will attempt to accurately fill in the citation information based on the metadata of the PDF, but you can always add or edit fields if it is unable to retrieve the correct information.