Citations and Bibliographies

This guide contains help for writing citations in APA, MLA, and other formats and also for managing your collection of citations.

Library Research Guide

Consider Using Mendeley if...

Mendeley logo: symmetrical image with circles in the shape of the letter "M" with the word "Mendeley"... you often download the full text while researching.

... almost all your sources are books and articles.

... you prefer to annotate/highlight on a PDF rather than have separate notes.

... you like an out-of-the-box tool that is easy and intuitive to learn.

Getting Started with Mendeley

Effective September 1, 2022, the Mendeley desktop will not be available for download.  Video guides for using the web version, Medeley Reference Manager, are not yet available.  Written instructions are available on Mendeley Help Guides.

Further information about the decision to discontinue the desktop is available on the Mendeley blog.

Setting Up Your Library

Adding Citations

To add citations that you export from databases, be sure to choose the correct file format. For the most commonly used databases, save your citations in the following formats:

  • PubMed - .nbib
  • CINAHL/EBSCO Databases - RIS Format
  • ProQuest, Google Scholar, Web of Science - BibTeX
  • PsycINFO - Direct export into Mendeley

Refine Citations List: Folders, Uploading PDFs, and Deduplication

Your Mendeley dashboard has a three-panel layout. The left-hand panel will allow you to create folders and subfolders for organizing your citations list.

Highlight the citation and look within the information that's located in the right-hand panel. Within this panel, you can include tags, URLs, DOIs, and any other details that will make it easier to find the citation again. This is also where you can find the "Files" function that will allow you to upload a PDF for that citation.   

Highlighting interface elements: creating folders to organize citations, editing individual records, and the searchbox to easily find citations saved in Mendeley.

Adding citations from multiple databases will ultimately create duplicates in your library. Use the "Check for Duplicates" tool (under the "Tools" menu) to remove these duplicated citations.

Checking for Duplicates in the Tools menu.

Collaborating with Groups

There are three types of groups you can join to collaborate with other researchers:

  • Private Groups: allow for small teams to work together and share full-text references, like PDFs. These groups do not appear in the list of Groups on the Mendeley website, and members must be invited to join.
  • Invite-only Groups: much like a closed Facebook group, members must be invited to join, even though the groups are publicly visible on the Mendeley site.
  • Open Groups: are completely public and can be joined by anyone with a Mendeley account.

Refer to the Mendeley guides resource to learn how to set up and join Mendeley groups.

Help Resources Created by Mendeley/Elsevier