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Mendeley Citation Manager Version 1.19 or earlier: Importing Citations

Importing Citations From Databases

Mendeley offers direct citation exporting from a number of database publishers including:

  • EBSCO -  Direct Export >> RIS Format
  • Gale  -  Citation Tools >>Reference Manager
  • ProQuest  - All Options >> Citations >> RIS
  • AccessPharmacy Library  - Get Citation >> Mendeley
  • American Chemical Society - Export >> RIS   (There is an add to Mendeley option but you need to create an ACS account then pair it to your Mendeley account)
  • Science Direct - Export >> Save to Mendeley
  • Sage - Download to Citation Manager >> RIS

If you have downloaded the browser plugin it usually easier to import the citation using that method instead. 

To use the plugin, navigate to the webpage where your article is located, click the Mendeley plugin, Log in to your Mendeley account at the prompt if you're not already logged in. 


Using the Web App to Import Citations

Depending on your browser you will see a screen similar to the one below. From here you can choose to accept the citation as is or make edits before saving it to your collection. Once the citation is to your liking, click the Save button. The citation will automatically sync up with your Desktop App, though sometimes there can be a short delay. You can speed up the process by clicking the "sync" button in the Desktop App. 


Importing Full Text Articles

Mendeley allows you import full text articles and store them in your account. Any open source/free download will work using the import PDF option in the browser plugin.

However Mendeley is not always able to directly import full text directly from paid databases which are behind an access wall, i.e. most of our databases. Though it is possible to download the full text from a database to your local computer then upload it to Mendeley. 

Importing PDFs directly to Mendeley:

If you're using a website which provides open access to its articles you can use the browser plugin. Click the browser plugin at the article level and make sure the "Download PDFs if available" option is selected and it should bring in the PDF and the citation in to one record. 

Sample web browser plugin.

Desktop App entry with attached PDF.

Importing PDFs from your local computer: 

If you're using a paid database such as Science Direct, Academic Search Premier, etc. It is still possible to import the article full text in to Mendeley, though it will require an additional step. 

First, download the article to your local computer. Then from the Mendeley Desktop App click the Add Files option in the menu or right click on your citation list and select Add Files. Select the file you would like to upload. Mendeley will bring in the file and create a citation at the same time.

Make sure to check the citation for accuracy. The quality of the citation is only as good as the hidden metadata attached to the file. It is possible to import the citation and the file separately then merge them later if you find the citations created by the file upload process are inaccurate.

To do this upload the file using the method above and also import the citation. Once both are in your collection go to the Mendeley Desktop App and select the entries you wish to merge. Right click one of the entries then select Merge Documents.

At the next screen click the Merge Documents button. It will ask you to confirm your choice, say yes. 

Drag and Drop Files

The following video shows alternative methods of importing articles in to Mendeley.