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Information on citation, citation management software, plagiarism, copyright, fair use, and creative commons

Zotero Pages

Zotero Web Site:

What's Zotero and how do I get started?

Why Zotero?

Zotero software allows you to collect your research in one place and organize and cite that research in your work. You can collaborate with other researchers and share your research collections. There are other citation managers as well, such as EndNote and Mendeley, but Zotero is free and open.


The Zotero website has excellent and detailed documentation. On the Zotero Support page you can find up-to-date information on installing Zotero, a Quickstart Guide, FAQ and screencasts for basic Zotero operations. Zotero Support:

Several other university library have prepared guides to Zotero that are helpful and clear. Two that provide clear documentation are

  • Eastern Michigan University: Zotero Guide Great introduction. Note especially all the links on the main page to blogs and plugins. 
  • Georgia State  University: Zotero Guide 

Please note that Guides from other institutions may have information that is specific to that institution and that doesn't apply to Brown. 

Tips and Tricks:

Mobile Zotero:

Information on installing Zotero on your Ipad. Courtesy of Georgia State University.

How do I get started?


Install Zotero and create an account


Download Zotero and the Zotero Connector here:

Make an account on Zotero.



Set up syncing


Zotero will automatically sync your research citations across platforms.

Open Zotero preferences by clicking “Edit > Preferences” (Windows/Linx) or “Zotero > Preferences” (Mac) and click the “Sync” tab.

Enter your user name and password, then click the boxes “Sync automatically” and “Sync full-text content.” You may want to pause syncing if you have a poor Internet connection.



Build your research library


Add an article to your Zotero library by navigating to the library catalog or website that hosts the resource and clicking on the yellow (or grey) folder icon. It will appear somewhere on the top of your screen, depending on your computer.


Zotero can sense research articles on the page and will ask you what articles you’d like to save to your collection.

Organize your collections


Now that you have collected a few articles, you can get organized.

Click the folder icon on the upper left hand of your screen to create a new collection. Drag and drop the relevant articles into that folder.


Consider adding notes on your articles to save your ideas for later.

Add tags to your research to easily search themes in your collection.


Collaborate with colleagues


Collaborate with others by joining groups or creating your own.

Try creating a new group and adding one of your colleagues. Now you can share resources.


Easily cite your research in a variety of styles (e.g. Chicago, MLA, APA).


Automatically add citations and bibliographies to Word documents

Create a citation and bibliography by clicking on the Zotero tab within Microsoft Word.


After clicking “Add/Edit Citation” or “Add/Edit Bibliography,” a red search bar will appear where you can type in the reference you’re looking for.



Click “enter” and your citations and bibliography will appear within the Word document -- already properly formatted.




If you are looking for a way to instantly generate a bibliography, but are not interested in building a shared library or reusing sources across different projects, ZoteroBib is a great resource to try.


ZoteroBib helps you build a bibliography instantly from any computer or device, without creating an account or installing any software:


For example, navigate to a URL that you’d like to save. Copy the URL into the “Cite” box on the front page of Zoterobib. Instantly, you’ll see a formatted citation of the article below. By clicking on the drop-down under “Bibliography,” you’ll be able to select a variety of citation styles.