Zotero: Getting Started with Zotero
Information about the free online citation and research management tool Zotero
The campuswide license to EndNote will come to an end on July 31. Discontinuing our license to EndNote has been under consideration, however this decision was expedited due to billing issues with the vendor. Moving forward, EndNote users will have three options. Detailed instructions for each option are in development, and EndNote users should watch their email this summer for further instructions.
Option 1: We recommend that EndNote users migrate their libraries to the open source platform, Zotero. Much like EndNote, Zotero collects, manages, and cites research references. It's easy to use and connects with your web browser to download sources. You can request Zotero support by emailing email@example.com.
Option 2: EndNote users who wish to stay with the platform may choose to switch their OSU license to an individual license. Please note, there is a cost to the individual to pursue this option.
Option 3: EndNote users may migrate to the free EndNote Basic if they have fewer than 50,000 references and 2GB of PDFs saved to their EndNote library, however it should be noted that we will discontinue EndNote support in the fall. If you choose to use EndNote basic, we also recommend using EndNote Click, a free browser extension that makes adding PDFs and citations to EndNote basic very easy.
What is Zotero for?
Zotero is a tool that collects, manages, and cites the sources you find during your research. In addition to saving a citation, you can add notes and images in your Zotero library and in many cases automatically download PDFs.
You can use Zotero to:
- Create and organize a personal database of references
- Import references automatically from many websites and electronic library resources
- Format bibliographies in your papers
There are a few reasons to prefer Zotero over other tools.
- Your Zotero library is saved locally and can be synced across multiple computers and an online account
- Zotero can be used offline
- Zotero allows you to create and share group libraries
- Learning Zotero is easy
Where can I find Zotero?
Download Zotero from https://www.zotero.org/download/
- Download the Zotero application for your operating system. If you plan to use Zotero with a word processor, close all word processing applications before running the installer.
- When installing the Zotero connector, the option you are given depends on which browser you are using to access the page. In the example above, I used Chrome to access the Zotero site, so it prompted me to install the Chrome connector. Connectors are also available for Firefox and Edge. Use those browsers to access the Zotero page if you want to install their connectors. You can add as many connectors as you want -- they will all connect to your Zotero application.
Note: The Zotero Connector for Safari is bundled with Zotero 6.0. After opening Zotero 6.0 for the first time, you can enable it from the Extensions pane of the Safari preferences. The Zotero Connector for Safari requires Safari 15 on macOS 11 Big Sur or later. If you experience issues with the Safari connector, check out the documentation on the Zotero website.
Getting Started with Zotero
Zotero provides the ability to save references from many library catalogs and article databses with one click. Your Zotero library allows you to organize and edit the entries.
Collections: The left column shows My Library, which contains all the items. Clicking the button above the left column creates a new collection, a folder into which items relating to a specific project or topic can be placed.
Below that is the tag selector, where tags assigned to items can be added or removed.
Items: The items pane displays a list of all the items in each collection with icons that indicate the type of item (book, article, thesis, screenshot, etc.).
Item Details: This pane displays the bibliographic information that was imported by Zotero for each item. Each field can be edited. There are also options to add additional notes, attachments, links to the original sources, tags, and subject headings.