Skip to Main Content

Zotero for Citation Management

Manage your research and create bibliographies with Zotero.

Install

Zotero is free software for your computer. You will need to download both Zotero Standalone and the Zotero browser extension for your browser of choice.

  1. Go to zotero.org/download/ 
  2. Choose the download for Windows or Mac (Choose Other platforms if you need something different), click Download.
  3. Under Zotero Connector, Install Chrome Connector or click "Connectors for other browsers" to find your preferred browser. The Zotero Connector for Safari is bundled with Zotero. You can enable it from the Extensions pane in the Safari settings.
  4. You may need to restart your computer to complete the integration.

Test It!

Test if Zotero is working:

  1. Find a book in the library catalog. For example: Zotero: A Guide for Librarians, Researchers, and Educators.
  2. In your browser, click the Save to Zotero icon (looks like a blue book).
  3. Check Zotero to see if information about the source was saved.

Layout

Zotero has three panels:

  1. The left panel lists your Collections.
  2. The middle panel lists your items.
  3. The right panel provides information about an individual item.

You can also reorder the middle and right panes for a vertical (rather than horizontal) layout. Choose either "Standard" or "Stacked" layout under Preferences > General.

Choose Settings

Most settings can be adjusted in Zotero's Preferences:

  1. Open Zotero.
  2. Find your preferences menu
    1. On Mac, go to Zotero > Preferences menu
    2. On Windows, go to Edit > Preferences menu

‚ÄčRecommended settings to review:

  • Under General, check the Automatically attach associated PDFs checkbox.
  • Under Export, choose the appropriate citation style (e.g., MLA) for your Default Output Format. (You will still be able to choose different citation styles later.)

Troubleshooting

If Zotero is not working, please follow these steps:

  1. Is Zotero open? If not, open Zotero on your computer.
  2. Is Zotero in the list of your browser's available extensions? If not, return to the Zotero download page and install the appropriate browser extension. You may need to install the Firefox or Chrome browser extension separately, especially if you use a different browser than the one you downloaded Zotero from.
  3. Did you restart your browser after installing Zotero? If not, restart your browser.
  4. Are you using Safari?  There are some issues with Safari, so use Firefox or Chrome instead and get the browser extension from Zotero (see #2).
  5. Still having problems? Contact a librarian or visit Zotero's support documentation.