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This guide provides an overview of Mendeley along with training options, support and access information for Mendeley.

Mendeley Desktop Layout

There are five main sections of Mendeley Desktop (seen in the photo below in red boxes): 

  1. Top toolbar, located at the top left of Mendeley Desktop = Add files, create folders, find related articles, and sync your desktop library to your web library.
  2. Search bar, located at the top right of Mendeley Desktop = Searches across your library or within individual articles.
  3. Left column = Contains your library, folders, groups, and ways to filter your items.
  4. Center column = When you select a folder from the left column, its items show up in this documents area. This is also where your main library will appear.
  5. Right column = When you click on an item in your Documents column, you can view and edit its details here. 

Watch the video below to take a tour of Mendeley Desktop.

Screenshot of the five main sections of Mendeley Desktop

1. Top Toolbar

screenshot of the top toolbar in mendeley desktop

Add files (Word, PDFs), folders, watch folders, or enter an entry manually. The easiest way to add an entry is through Mendeley's web importer because Mendeley will often auto populate the necessary fields for an item. You can add files to Mendeley by:

  • Dragging and dropping a pdf into Mendeley
  • You can also add files by selecting file and then clicking add files or folder. 
  • Another way to add files is by selecting file and then clicking "watch folder" to choose a folder to put on watch. Mendeley Desktop will now automatically add files that are added to that folder.

Create or delete folders.

Find related articles with the "Related" button. Select one or more related articles and click "Related" to find similar articles.

Sync your web library to your desktop library. This keeps your desktop and web libraries up to date.

Get help straight from the desktop.

2. Search Bar

Search your entire library using key terms.

If you have an article open, you can search within the text for key terms.

3. Left Column

All folders, groups, and trash are located in the left column. Create folders here as well.

Mendeley automatically adds as much information as it can. When more information is needed, check the "Needs Review" folder for items that need further attention.

4. Center Column

This is where you can view your library, items within a folder, and article PDFs. When you annotate PDFs, you will do so in this column.

5. Right Column

When you add notes to PDFs, you can find them here. You can also find all your sticky notes within the document here in the right column. Some PDFs have table of contents that you can navigate.