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Manage Citations with Zotero, Mendeley, and EndNote

Provides guidance on how to use choose a citation management program and how-to use various citation management programs.

Mendeley Blog

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About Mendeley

At its most basic level, Mendeley is a citation management tool, but it can also help with other aspects of research, such as:

  • Organizing PDFs of research papers, including annotations and highlights.
  • Inserting bibliographies and citations into a word processor.
  • Sharing research with collaborators.
  • Discovering articles in your field.


Mendeley Importation Overview


Mendeley will interpet bibliographic data and import citations with one click from these sources:



First steps

The basic Mendeley account is free. To get the most out of Mendeley, it’s best to use both the web (browser-based) application and the desktop application (which is available for Mac, Windows and Linux). To use Mendeley you will sign up for a free account on And from there, you can also download the desktop application.

Sign up for an account:

Go to and click the Sign up for free link in the upper right corner.

The free account gives you 1 GB of space, the ability to create 5 private groups with a maximum of 3 users per group. Paid options allow you to increase those limits.

Once you have your account set up, you can edit your profile to share additional details about yourself with colleagues you connect to through Mendeley. In your profile, you can also mark publications in your library for which you are the author, and Mendeley will track page view, reader and download statistics on those articles for you.

Download the Desktop application:

Go to and download the appropriate version for your operating system. Windows, Mac and Linux versions are available.

Install Web importer

Go to and follow the instructions for adding the Import to Mendeley button in your browser. It is an application that sits in your browser's bookmark bar; you will click the bookmark when you want to save a citation from an online source.  If you use more than one browser regularly, do this to all of them. Do run the Pop-up Blocker Test and turn off blocking for Mendeley or you will not be able to automatically collect citations.


Content from this Mendeley guide was borrowed heavily from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Amy Johnson at Montana State University.