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Zotero: About Zotero

How to collect, organize, and cite articles, and create formatted bibliographies with the free tool, Zotero.

Points to Consider


  • Great for importing records for non-traditional references, like wikis and websites.
  • Allows advanced searching of your library.
  • Helps to organize web screenshots and PDFs. You can make PDFs searchable by choosing to index them in the preferences menu. 
  • The program lives where you already do most of your research, in the browser.
  • It's user-friendly and free!
  • Easily retrieves PDF metadata, like title and author information.
  • Synchronizes collections among multiple computers & backs up data.
  • Offers option to create user profiles and groups, so you can share your collection.
  • Detects proxy servers automatically, making off-campus access to library databases easier.


  • Doesn't handle large collections well.
  • Takes more time to maintain than other popular products, like  EndNote.
  • It's a good idea to check records after you import them, to make sure that everything is in order. 
  • Fewer output styles.  Editing them can be quite a challenge.

Using Zotero

Click on the tabs above to learn how to install Zotero, collect citations and media, organize Zotero libraries, cite references in papers and create bibliographies, sync references and share them with both Zotero and EndNote users.

About Zotero

What Zotero Does

Zotero ( "zoh-TAIR-oh") is a free, easy-to-use tool to help you collect, organize, cite, and share your research.  Zotero can be downloaded as a browser extension for Firefox  as a standalone program that works with Windows, Mac, or Linux systems and allows use with Firefox, Chrome and Safari browsers.

Zotero allows you to attach PDFs, notes and images to your citations, organize them into collections for different projects, and create bibliographies.

It automatically updates itself periodically to work with new online sources and new bibliographic styles.

Zotero Tour

The video below from Wake Forest and offers a quick tour of the features of Zotero.

For a more complete set of videos see the Zotero Quick Start Guide and the Zotero Documentation page. Both include brief videos and text directions.


The Lister Hill Library of the Health Sciences would like to acknowledge Jason Puckett and Georgia State University for some of the materials used in this guide.   

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