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A guide to using the citation management tool Zotero.

Zotero for Firefox, Chrome, and Safari

Zotero Standalone is an application that you can download from It plugs into your browser of choice, and comes with connectors for three browsers: Firefox, Chrome, and Safari.

You must have Zotero Standalone open to use the Firefox, Chrome, and Safari capture icons. (If you don't, you will just be redirected to Zotero's website.)

You do not have to install the word processor plugins with Zotero Standalone. The plugins are bundled with the software download.

  • To install the Zotero Standalone software, visit the Zotero download page. Click on the link for your operating system and follow standard procedures for installing software on your computer. Zotero Standalone comes with word processor plugins, so you will not need to install these. Links to install the browser connectors are found just beside the Standalone download links. 
  • Chrome Connector: A box will appear in the lower right hand corner of the browser asking if you want to continue. Click Continue. Then click Install when Chrome asks if you want to install.
  • You will now see Zotero capture icons in the address bar. Screenshot of Zotero capture icon on the right side of a browser's address bar.
  • Safari Connector: Depending on your settings Safari may not automatically open the file. Use Control+ Click and select "Download linked file to..." to save the file to your desktop or some other easy to remember location. Double click the file to open. Click Open, then click Install. The Safari capture icon will show up as a little box to the left of the address bar.


Integration with Google Docs

Directions for adding a Zotero toolbar and menu to the Google Docs interface:
Zotero Google Docs integration

Zotero menu highlighted in Google Docs, showing "Add/Edit Citation" option.

Zotero Word Processor Plug-In for Firefox

An additional word processor plug-in is needed to insert and format citations in Microsoft Word or Open Office documents when using the Firefox extension. The plug-in you install depends on your operating system and word processing program.   To find and install the right plug-in and extensions for your word processor, visit Zotero's instructions for installing word processor plugins.

Once you have successfully installed the plug-in, you will see the Zotero citation tools right in your word processor.

Here is an example of what the Zotero plug-in looks like in Word 2007:

Zotero plugin buttons in Microsoft Word 2007, visible on the menu bar under "Add-Ins."