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Mendeley: Getting Started

a guide to using Mendeley, a free reference manager and academic social network that can help you organize your research, collaborate with others online, and discover the latest research.

What is Mendeley?

How to Get Mendeley

There are a couple different ways for you to access and use Mendeley. The following links will lead you to each where you can decide which works best for you. 

Technical Requirements

Mendeley Desktop runs natively on Windows (32 and 64bit), Mac (Intel with OS X 10.5 or later) and Linux (32 and 64bit).

About Mendeley

Mendeley logo

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 in your field. Mendeley is a great organization tool for those who have accumulated a large number of PDF files during the research process. Using Mendeley, you can extract metadata from your PDFs which will allow you to index and organize your collection for easy searching and citing. Mendeley is a desktop application but also has an online component so you'll need to download the software onto your computer in order to get started. Mendeley also offers users a mobile option called Mendeley - Reference Manager (Lite) for iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.



  • Cross-platform: Mendeley Desktop has full support for Windows, Mac, and Linux.
  • Secure backup: Any documents synced in the desktop client will be backed up on the web.
  • Mobile devices: Read papers anywhere with your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch.
  • Install on multiple computers: Install Mendeley on multiple computers and access your entire library.


  • Full text search: Mendeley Desktop creates a fully searchable database of your papers.
  • Automatic metadata extraction: Mendeley automatically extracts metadata from the papers you import.
  • Highlight and annotate: Organize your own notes and highlights and share them with others.
  • Flexible organization: Groups, tags, and filters let you organise your way.


  • Research collaboration: Use research groups to collaborate with your peers and colleagues.
  • Trends and statistics: Get real-time readership statistics and view trends in your research area.
  • Track your own publications: Find out how many people are reading and downloading your own research.
  • Related research: Get personalized suggestions on interesting papers to read.


  • Microsoft Word / Open Office: Our plugins let you easily insert bibliographies into your documents.
  • BibTeX / Endnote / RIS: Mendeley Desktop can import and export all these formats and more.
  • Zotero / CiteULike: Mendeley Desktop can sync with your Zotero or CiteULike libraries.
  • Mendeley API: Our API allows 3rd parties to build applications using Mendeley's data.

(from Mendeley's Features page)

      Mendeley Resources

      Digital Initiatives Librarian

      Winifred King's picture
      Winifred King
      D. Samuel Gottesman Library
      Albert Einstein College of Medicine
      Jack and Pearl Resnick Campus
      1300 Morris Park Ave.
      Bronx, NY 10461

      P: 718.430.3108


      This guide is based in part on a guide by Marie Sciangula at the Teaching, Learning, and Technology Center (TLTC) at Purchase College, SUNY.