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Citation Management Tools

A guide helping researchers and students select and use citation management and reference generator software.

Zotero Features

  • Web + desktop access (sync or solo)
  • Attach reference articles
  • Free to anyone
  • On-line sharing of references
  • Collects web page information, but does not pull in abstracts from journals
  • Citation tools for in-text and bibliographic use in Word (Bug in current version easily bypassed)
  • Drag in old libraries/files
  • zotPad - i-Pad and i-Phone access
  • 300 MB free on-line storage
  • Over 2,750 output styles
  • Output styles editable (but not easy)


Downloading and Installing Zotero

To get started, you will need two Zotero plugins: one for Firefox and one for Word.

  1. Begin by downloading Zotero for Firefox. Click the red Download Now box and choose Zotero for Firefox.
  2. When the installation is complete, you will be automatically re-directed to Zotero’s Success! page. Go ahead and create an account (it’s free!) so you can access your library from any browser. Follow the e-mail verification and instructions to sync your account

  3. Next, you will need to download the Word plugin. Return to the Zotero home page, click the red Download Now box (again) and download the Word Processor Plugin for Zotero for Firefox.

Finding the Fulltext FIRST

Before you can put your article and citation in Zotero, you first need to find a full-text version of the article here at KUMC or on-line. If you have a citation (the name of an author, date published, title, journal, etc.) you can usually easily find the entire article.

Video Tutorial

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Easy Instructions for Bypassing the Zotero Bug

Zotero’s Insert Citation function, in its default setting after installation, will open a red oval-shaped window from which you can search, tweak and then insert your citation. This function may tend to hang your system, and appears to be resolved only by forcing the program to quit, thereby creating the potential for lost work. You may want to bypass it entirely by setting Zotero to insert citations from its Classic View instead. While clicking the drop-down arrow in the red Zotero oval will open the classic view, to make Classic View a permanent change (and thereby avoid the bugginess), you will need to set it from the Preferences menu of Zotero for Firefox. Here’s how:

Firefox Error Messages

Some have reported that Firefox 20 is incompatible with Zotero. The most recent version of Zotero (4.0) should work with all standard (not beta) versions of Firefox. If you are experiencing trouble, make sure you are downloading the most recent version of Zotero (4.0). You may need to reinstall Firefox 19.