Library Subject Guides

Mendeley: Add References

Add References into Mendeley

References can be imported from websites, library databases or PDF documents. The different ways to get references into Mendeley are outlined below.

Web Importer

This works well for single articles on a web page and for some databases.  To install the Web importer either:

  • From Mendeley web: install from Mendeley home page OR

  • From Mendeley desktop: Install the Web Importer from the Tools menu.

When you locate an article you wish to put into Mendeley, click the Save to Mendeley button (Safari/IE) or Mendeley icon  (Chrome) to save.

There are mixed results using this with Library databases.  It works well with ScienceDirect and can be used with Google Scholar but is not very successful for MultiSearch or EBSCO databases. To save references from these databases, see the below instructions on importing from another file format.

Import or drag and drop pdfs

Mendeley offers great flexibility for importing pdfs.  Either:

  • Drag and drop PDFs into your Library

  • Import pdfs  - Click Add – Import document (web version) or Add Files (Desktop)

  • Set up a Watch folder to enable Mendeley to import a pdf automatically. Go to Add files (desktop) – Watched Folder and select a folder. When you add a pdf to the folder, Mendeley will automatically add it to your Library.

Mendeley will extract the citation details to create the reference and link the fulltext pdf.  Depending on the pdf, sometimes you need to manually edit the details if information is missing.

Enter a reference manually

Desktop version: Click Add Files - Add Entry Manually

Web version: Click Add - New Manual Entry

Import from another file format: RIS, XML or BibTeX

From Mendeley desktop click File - Import - select the RIS file you wish to import.

This method works well to save multiple items from MultiSearch or EBSCO databases into Mendeley.  Simply ensure that your file of references exports as a .ris file or .xml file.

MultiSearch instructions:

  • Mark the items you wish to export
  • From the Saved Items, click Export to EndNote
  • Make sure the file saves as .ris
  • Note where the file has saved and then import from Mendeley desktop

EBSCO instructions:

  • Mark the references you wish to export
  • From the EBSCO folder select Export
  • Select the option Direct Export in RIS format and click save
  • Note where the file has saved and then import from Mendeley desktop