Zotero is a reference management tool that can be used for storing bibliographic information and adding citations. Click on the tabs below for information about Zotero.
Zotero is a free, open-source reference management tool that comes in three components: Zotero Web library, Zotero Desktop (installed onto a Mac or Windows computer) and Zotero Connector. Zotero Desktop is used for advanced management options and for citing. The Zotero Connector is a browser extenstion that can be used to collect some references directly from a website. All are free to use, and Zotero Desktop is available on all University managed computers as well as personal computers.
Zotero allows you to:
For more information on the features of Zotero and to see a comparison of other reference management tools, see our Reference Management practical guide.
Once you have registered to use Zotero, you can access your Zotero Web Library from anywhere with a computer connected to the Internet. To use most functionality, including adding citations, you should also install Zotero Desktop and the Zotero Connector.
All University of York classroom PCs include Zotero Desktop, and include installation of the Zotero plugin for Microsoft Word.
A Zotero account is not managed by the University, so you cannot simply log on using your University username and password. You can register using any email address. However, to make use of the collaborative tools it may help other users if you register using your UoY address.
For security reasons, do not use your UoY password when you register.
To install Zotero Desktop on office PCs managed by IT Services, follow these steps:
Once installed, it appears under Start.
To install Zotero Desktop on an unmanaged or personal computer, follow these steps:
Once Zotero Desktop is installed, you should enter your account details into the ‘Sync’ settings to backup and sync your library with your Zotero Web account. This will ensure you can see your library on the Zotero Web library, and sync it with other devices.
Go to Edit > Preferences (Windows) or Zotero > Preferences (Mac) and select Sync. Enter your Zotero account username and password and select Set up syncing.
The Zotero Connector extension is available for most internet browsers including Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge and Firefox. The button in your browser allows you to directly import some PDFs, web pages and bibliographic information directly into your reference library when viewing search engines and academic databases. You will be prompted to install it when opening Zotero Desktop for the first time or can install the Zotero Connector for your browser from the Zotero Downloads page. See our Reference Management guide on collecting references for more information.
Installing this browser extension will also allow you to cite from your Zotero library into Google Docs. A 'Zotero' menu will appear when opening an document in Google Docs in the web browser.
When installing Zotero Desktop, it will automatically install a citation plugin for Microsoft Word or LibreOffice. In Microsoft Word, you should see a new tab called ‘Zotero’ to be able to insert citations in your selected referencing style. See our Reference Management Practical guide for more information on Citing with Zotero.