Mendeley — Reference Manager and Citation Generator

One step in working smart

Preparing a research paper, thesis, or document report requires citation and reference. Referencing avoids plagiarism. It also allows the author to acknowledge the contribution of other authors. It is a way to give credit to the writers from whom you have borrowed words and/or ideas. It is also a way to provide evidence to support the author’s assertions and claims. It also allows the readers to trace the sources of information used. Citations make the document more persuasive.

More than decades ago, organizing references are the most time-consuming activity in thesis writing since the focus of that document is to answer problems/questions. After the report is established that was only the time when people consolidate sources, and manually input references in the document depending on the format required such as the American Psychological Association (APA) format or the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Format.

Mendeley

Mendeley is a free reference manager. It will help the author store, organize, note, share and cite references and research data. It automatically generates bibliographies, easily import papers from other research software, and find relevant papers based on what you’re reading.

Mendeley Desktop

Creating an Account and Downloading Mendeley Desktop

  1. Simply visit www.mendeley.com. Click the “Create account” as shown below.

2. Click the “Download Mendeley Desktop for Windows”. For other systems, you may choose from macOS and Linux as shown above.

Web Importer

3. You may also download a Chrome Plug-In Extension, Mendeley Web Importer to reference from the Web shown above.

Mendeley Desktop

One of my favorite features of Mendeley is Drag & Store. Simply drag the file, which may be a research paper, thesis, etc., to Mendeley Desktop and it will be stored on the library as shown below:

Mendeley Library

The references may also be read using Mendeley and have features for highlighting, annotating, and commenting which can be shared within your group (if it is a grouped thesis / grouped research study) as shown below:

Sample Highlighting and Commenting

Installing MS Word Plugin

Installing MS Word Plugin

Simply click the Tools and choose Install MS Word Plugin.

Using Mendeley in MS Word

By the end of your statement, click References and you will notice a new portion “Mendeley Cite-O-Matic” as shown in the image below. Simply click the Insert Citation.

A dialogue box will be shown, you may either search the title of the document you are referencing for in your built-in library or just click Go To Mendeley.

Clicking Go To Mendeley will open the Mendeley. Simply choose the document/s (Yes, you may click multiple documents) your statement is/are referring for then click Cite.

Then, it will automatically put a reference on your statement as shown below:

The next step will include the insertion of a Bibliography. Simply click the Insert Bibliography, it will result in an automatic citation of your reference. The good thing about this is it can adapt to the referencing style. Below are two examples of styles in the American Psychological Association (APA) and Integrated Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) respectively.

Takeaway

Some may argue, “We can input it manually. It is easier for us.” Imagine if you are referencing 100 documents, and in the middle of your study, you need to add another reference, will the number or sequence automatically change if done manually? It will take a lot of your time just by changing the numbers or the sequence of your reference being shown in your bibliography.

Have you noticed how I repeated use the word “simply”? It is because learning Mendeley is simple yet very useful.

This is an encouragement for everyone to use tools available for us to save time and put this time into more productive activities. For any questions, please do leave a note. Thank you.

The way we spend our time defines who we are. — Jonathan Estrin

Filipino | Registered Electrical Engineer | Aspiring Data Scientist | Principal Engineer at National Transmission Corporation

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