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Zotero Installation / User Guide

All supported (Chrome, FireFox, Safari) browsers
now use only the Standalone Unified version

rev. March 19, 2018 by M. Strahan
text edits Jan. 14, 2019

Zotero is a free research manager which helps you collect, organize, and manage your sources. This
application works with Google Chrome, FireFox, & Safari web browsers, and integrates
with word processing programs such as MS Word & Google Docs. Zotero facilitates quick in-text citing,
and one-click generation of references according to a multitude of styles including APA, MLA, Chicago,
Turabian, & journal-specific.

Creating a account on Zotero's website allows you to sync your collections to a central point (300MB free)
from multiple computers (such as work & home). It also allows you to create groups.

Minimum operating system requirements for Zotero verison 5.x:

macOS 10.9 or later
Windows XP SP2 or later

Mac users: If you are running an older operating system, please see footnotes on this Zotero page, and
then after installing, Jump to Library Installation guide for Zotero version 4.0x.


Want to learn more about using Zotero before installing?
Jump to Zotero videos


Note that this guide will focus on FireFox & Google Chrome.

--- First, save documents & close all programs other than web browser before proceeding ---

Rationale: In order to finish installation, Zotero may need to reboot your computer.

--- Second, Check Version of Web Browser ---

Rationale: The Zotero Connector which allows downloading information from the browser into
Zotero only works with these versions of the browser:

FireFox: Version 52 or higher
Chrome: Version 55 or higher

Once you have opened Firefox, you need to check that it is version 52 or higher. To do this, go to
the menu heading Help, and select "About Firefox" (see screen shot below). If it says you have a
lower-numbered version, Mozilla will automatically download & install the latest version of FireFox.


Google Chrome
Once you have opened Chrome, you need to check that it is version 55 or higher. To do this,
go to the upper-right corner and click on three dots (see screen shot below), highlight Help, and select
"About Google Chrome". If it says you have a lower-numbered version, Google will automatically
download & install the latest version of Chrome.


--- Third, Download & Install Zotero ---

Once you have the latest version of your browser, open it, download Zotero and install the program. The
download interface automatically recognizes your specific browser and operating system, and provides
the appropriate choice.

If you receive a message preventing this site (www.zotero.org) from installing software on your computer,
click on the Allow button.

Proceed through the Setup Wizard. When asked about Setup Type (screen below), we recommend choosing Standard. You will be able to customize it later.


Once installed you will be prompted to Reboot your computer (see below). 

After you click on Finish, your computer will reboot.

--- Fourth, Install Zotero Connector for your specific browser ---

Open your browser & go to the Download page to install the Connector. The download interface
automatically recognizes your specific browser and operating system, and provides the
appropriate choice.

--- Fifth, Word Processing Plugin ---

This plugin allows you to create a bibliography, in-text citations, and footnotes or end notes from within word processing software. 

Note that Zotero version 5.x automatically installs the plugin for Microsoft Word.

Open Microsoft Word, and click on the Zotero tab to display tools:

Using Google Docs? No plugin required. Click here for Zotero support documentation.

Using LibreOffice? Click here for plugin.

--- Sixth, Register to create a Zotero account (optional) ---

You do not need to register your Zotero account but you may want to do this at a later date as there are a
number of advantages including the ability to sync your citations to the Zotero site, allowing you to
access them from any computer at any time.

--- Last, Customize Zotero ---

There are over 6,000 citation styles available for Zotero including many styles based on individual journal titles. Zotero only comes configured with the more popular 15-20 styles. You may add other sytles through either the Zotero Style Repository , or from within Zotero (Edit --> Preferences --> Cite menu choice).

We recommend you Jump to Customize Zotero Settings for NMU to make Zotero work better with NMU resources.

You are now ready to use Zotero. The videos below will show you how to use the key features of this program.

How to Use Zotero videos
The following videos will take you through the process of importing citations into your Zotero databases,
manually creating an entry in Zotero, organizing your citations by collection, and using the word processing
integration to format citations in your research paper.

As with most things, Zotero is not perfect. Always check your citations for accuracy. For example, Zotero
will not correct data or capitalized titles. Be sure to check entry data for each citation before inserting in
text. Also, please edit citations in Zotero, not in your word processing software.

  1. Quick Bibliographic Demo (3:50) - A quick overview of importing citations from Websites or databases

  2. Getting Stuff Into Zotero (4:03) - A more detailed presentation on importing citations into Zotero.

  3. Manually Adding Items (3:05) - Shows you how to manually create a database entry

  4. Organizing Your Sources (3:07) - Shows you how to create folders to manage your citations.

  5. Zotero and Microsoft Word (2:55) - Shows you how to use the Zotero plugin with MS Word to create footnotes, endnotes, in-text citations, and bibliographies. There is also a helpful User Guide for the word processsor plugin.

Additional videos can be viewed at the Zotero Screencast Tutorials page.

Library Hours
Mon: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Tue: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Wed: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Thu: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Fri: 7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Sat: 12:00 noon - 8:00 p.m.
For exceptions and full year hours