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Instructions for using and exporting sources to Zotero, the free, easy to use tool to help you collect, organize, cite, and share your research sources.

Getting stuff into your library

Importing Citations

The Zotero browser extension allows you to quickly save items to your Zotero library while you are searching, without having to leave your browser. 

  • Whether you are using the Zotero Standalone or Zotero for Firefox, adding citations to your library with a browser extension works in the same easy way. 

1.  Click on the small icon that appears in the right corner of your browser address bar. 

  • There are different icons to represent the various source types. The icon pictured above indicates that this source will be included in your Zotero library as an article. 
  • If you see a folder icon, this indicates that you can add multiple sources from a list of results.

  • This works on any type of website, including McQuade Library databases, google scholar, online book catalogs, Amazon, etc. 

2.  A box will appear in the lower right corner of your browser showing that telling you when the item is saved.

If you are using Zotero for Firefox, the new citations will appear immediately in the Zotero pane in the bottom of your browser.  

3.  If you are using Zotero Standalone, click on the "Sync" button in your toolbar to add new items

Whether you are using the Zotero Standalone or Zotero for Firefox, adding citations to your library from the Zotero platform can be done in 2 ways:

1. Add citation information by an identifier by clicking on the "Add Items by Identifier" button on the toolbar,  type in the item DOI, ISBN or PMID and press enter

  • After entering all your identifiers, the citation will automatically appear in your Zotero library. 
  • This is a helpful option if you added a PDF to your Zotero library and want to quickly look up and add the corresponding citation information. For more information about PDFs, click on the next tab. 

2.  Add items manually by clicking on the "New Item" button, selecting the source type and then filling in the information fields in the right column

  • Click on "More" to see over 30 additional source types.

  • This is a helpful option if you want to include an uncommon source type (the item information above is citing a podcast), or if the citation information will not automatically save.  

Whether you are using the Zotero Standalone or Zotero for Firefox, you can add citations to your library by dragging PDFs from your desktop or file window into the Zotero platform.   

  • Adding a PDF to Zotero alone will not automatically generate a citation.  There are three ways to connect PDFs and citations

1.  Add the citation to your Zotero library first (using any of the methods in the previous tab), then drag PDF directly over the citation to merge the two together. 

  • An arrow will appear to the left of the source title to show that there are documents attached to the citation. 
  • If you imported citations from another reference manger, you will need to follow this process to attach any documents to the newly added items. 

2.  Drag the PDF into Zotero, right click on the file and select "Retrieve Metadata" to generate a citation based on the information in the PDF.

  • The citation will now be the main entry, with the PDF as an attached item.