Zotero is a bibliographic management tool that is freely available to download, install, and use. You can use Zotero to collect, manage and cite research sources. It allows users to efficiently collect information from library catalogs and databases and produce citations and bibliographies with ease.
Zotero can be either a standalone software (which can be connected to Chrome or Safari browsers) or a Firefox browser extension for Windows, Mac or Linux operating systems.
With Zotero, you can also store .pdf documents, notes, and snapshots of web pages. A final feature of Zotero is creation of group libraries for collaborative projects. Zotero was developed at George Mason University's Center for History and New Media with sponsorship from the Melon and Sloan Foundations and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.
This guide will help with installation, basic use, and support materials for using Zotero.
Your first decision will be whether to install Zotero as a standalone software (which you can use in connection with Chrome,Safari or Firefox Browsers) or as an add-on to the Mozilla Firefox browser. Follow the directions below depending on your choice:
Downloading Zotero as a standalone program:
To install Zotero as a standalone program, click here and follow the instructions to download Zotero 4.0 as a standalone.
Follow the instructions for download. When you have finished, return to the download page and select the browser connector you would like to use (Chrome, Safari or Firefox).
Downloading Browser Plugins:
Zotero offers plugins for most major browsers (Safari, Chrome, Firefox), which allow you to "scrape" bibliographic information off of websites (helpful for databases in particular). You can download the appropriate browser plugin here.
Downloading Zotero as a Firefox add-on:
Zotero began as an extension of Firefox, and so it is most powerful when joined with the Firefox browser. This will allow you to search your references directly in the Firefox browser. If you do not already have Firefox, please download (or upgrade to at least 3.0) and run the program. Firefox download
The Zotero program is available for download at Zotero.org. We recommend using version 4.0 and teach that in our training sessions.
If you see the message “Firefox prevented this site from asking you to install software on your computer," click "Allow".
Restart Firefox. You'll see a small Zotero button at the bottom of your Firefox window. Click that icon to open Zotero whenever the browser is open.
This guide provides some additional troubleshooting tips for installation.
For both options:
Finally, because Zotero 4.0 syncs items you save at a local computer with your library on their server, you need to establish an account at Zotero.org The next step is to set up your preferences for syncing and storing. Please proceed to the next tab.