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Find, Clean, Add, and Organize

Zotero is a free Firefox, Chrome, and Safari extension that helps you collect, manage, and cite your research sources.

On this page, we'll demonstrate how to start building an organized set of citation information. Start by creating "collections" (folders), and then find and import records from all kinds library and web resources.

Zotero 3.1: Organizing, Finding, & Adding Citations

A Note About Adding Citations

Add citations by clicking the zotero  icon in your URL bar that appears whenever Zotero recognizes a reference – whether you’re looking at a library catalog, a database, or another website. The icon changes depending on the kind of record: e.g., book, newspaper, journal article, or list of references.

Don't see an icon? The Chrome doesn't display plugins until you "pin" them. Just click the puzzle-piece to the right of the url bar, and in the drop-down, click the pushpin icon next to "zotero."

Zotero 3.2: Verifying and Cleaning Citations

What it Looks Like

Here are a few examples of Zotero's browser plugin.




Additional Import Methods

You can also add citations to Zotero by:

  • ISBN
  • DOI (Digital Object Identifier)
  • PMID (PubMed ID)
  • Manually typing or cutting-and-pasting
  • Importing a BibTex, RIS, or other citation data file

Advanced Tip: Turn Existing Bibliography into Zotero Data

Do you have a bibliography in an old paper you'd like to add to Zotero?

  1. Copy the full bibliography into your clipboard
  2. Go to
  3. Paste contents into "Parse" window
  4. Edit the data fields
  5. Export as BibText file
  6. In Zotero, choose File>Import