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Mendeley: Collecting References

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.

Adding References to My Library: from Rhodes Library OPAC

Unfortunately, there is no quick method to importing item/book references from RU Library OPAC into Mendeley.

1. The simplest method is to Add Document, and complete the form by manually recording reference details.

2. The second method does not work for all PDFs, so you may have to add reference details manually anyway.

  • Select the book you need cited on the Library OPAC. A PDF icon appears top right in the tool bar

  • Click on the PDF icon.  "Save as" in your document folder and allocate a suitable name.
  • Open Mendeley 'My Library' Select Add Files

  • Select the file saved in your documents.
  • If the Bibliographic details are not reflected, manually record the reference details.
  • Allocate the book to the appropriate folder.

Adding References to My Library: from Databases

Auto-export to Mendeley

Note: Some databases import citations to Mendeley in different ways.

  • When your database search results display, click on the Save to Mendeley bookmark (tool bar), and a new window will open. Select the file to send the article. Save. If you have to create a new folder, save the citations and drag to the new folder when created.

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  • Select the article (individually) to be cited into Mendeley, and open the PDF article to be cited into Mendeley.  Click Adobe icon(top right  corner) Convert current web page to an Adobe PDF file, and save to your documents.

    Open Mendeley 'My Library' Select Add Files. Select the file saved in your documents. Change the bibliographic details so that you can identify the article. Allocate the article to the appropriate folder.

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NOTE: The same export principles apply to other databases.

Attaching files to My Library

It's easy to attach files (like PDFs) to items in your Zotero library.  Just drag the file into your Zotero pane.  Dropping a file onto a collection, or in between library items, will copy it into your library as a standalone item.  Dropping it onto an existing item will attach it to that item.  This is the easiest way to attach a copy of an article to its entry in your library.

Each item also has an Attachments tab in the right column.  You can attach files by clicking the Attachments tab and then the Add button.

It's easy to attach files (like PDFs) to your Mendeley My Library. There are two ways to do this.

1. Use the 'Add Document' button located in the Mendeley Desktop toolbar. Select your file and OPEN. The file still needs to be allocated to your My Library folder.

2. Drag and drop PDFs into the middle column of Mendeley Desktop

In either case, Mendeley detects the document details (author, abstract, keywords, etc.). Documents that Mendeley cannot find details for go into the 'Needs Review' section for manual verification.

More ways to add/import references to My Library

  • Add manual References.

    • open your Mendeley Desktop software
    • click on the icon in the top left corner (of the paper and a green plus sign)
    • select the 'Add Entry Manually' option

    • in the next window, select the type of document you want to save to your account

    • Manual record all the bibliographic detail required. And Save

  • Export database citations as a text file

If you do a database search and click on the 'Save to Mendeley' bookmark in your browser's toolbar, and your results are not re-displayed as a list of citations, close the new Mendeley window and take another approach.

Mark off the citations you want to keep and export them as either an 'RIS' or a 'BibTex' file. 'RIS' and 'BibTex' files are coded text files of citations which Mendeley can interpret. Then open your Mendeley Desktop software and click on 'File' --> 'Import' and navigate to your saved file.

Here is a video of what that process looks like:

  • Grab a webpage

If you want to copy a webpage to your Mendeley account, first make sure you have the 'Save to Mendeley' bookmark saved in your browser's tool bar. Then, when you are on a webpage you want to add to your Mendeley account, you simply click on the 'Save to Mendeley' toolbar. You will see a pop-up window where you can enter the citation information.

  • Have Mendeley import new documents from designated folder

You can set Mendeley to monitor one or more folders on your computer's hard drive, and import whatever documents you save there. To do this:

  • open your Mendeley Desktop software
  • click on the File icon in the top left corner
  • select the 'Watch Folder' option

  • in the next window, browse to the folder you want your Menedley software to monitor

  • click on the OK button

Publishers Supporting Mendeley

These database publishers are currently supported by Mendeley:

Mendeley twitter

Need help?

For a one-on-one consultation, email your librarian