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An in-depth guide to using Zotero.

Adding more citation styles to Zotero

Zotero is pre-loaded with the most common bibliographic styles, but many more are available to download, such as the Bluebook for legal writing.

To install a style:

  1. Open the Zotero desktop application on your computer.
  2. Go to the Zotero Style Repository page.
  3. Search for the name of the style you need.
  4. Click on the link of the style you'd like to add. Press "OK" when the Zotero Connector dialogue box appears.

The new style will now appear in Zotero's style lists.

Creating Quick Bibliographies

It's easy to create a bibliography from your Zotero library. (For annotated bibliographies, see the next page of this guide, "Annotated Bibliographies.")

Select the reference(s) or collection(s) you want to include in your bibliography. Hold the control key and click to select multiple items. Right-click and choose Create Bibliography.

Choose the bibliographic style you want, select Copy to Clipboard, click OK and paste into your word processor.

This method works with any word processor (or anywhere you can paste text, like Google Docs).

Are there errors in your bibliography?

If so, fix the necessary fields and re-create the bibliography. See the Editing References page for more information about editing your references.

Creating Your Bibliography While You Write

Microsoft Word or LibreOffice/OpenOffice

The ​Zotero download includes word processing plugins for Word and LibreOffice/OpenOffice. The plugin adds a Zotero toolbar to your word processor that allows you to add citations to your document while you write.

To add a citation, click the first button ("Add/Edit Citation") on the toolbar. Search for the reference you want to cite and press Enter. Zotero will add the citation at your cursor.

At the end of your paper, click the "Insert Bibliography" button. Your bibliography will appear, and new citations will be added automatically. Change bibliographic styles with the "Document Preferences" button.

Google Docs

In 2018, Zotero introduced the "cite as you write" feature to Google Docs. It works similarly to the Word option above; simply go to the Zotero tab in Google Docs and choose the Add/edit Citaton (for in-text citation) or Add/edit bibliography (to add the full bibliography).

Are there errors in your in-text citations or bibliography?

You must fix them in Zotero itself. See the Editing References page for more information on editing. The corrections you make will appear on your document the next time you save and reopen the document, the next time you add or change a citation, or the next time you refresh the document. Do NOT be tempted to make minor changes on the Word document itself; it may look like your changes have been fixed, but the Word plugin will constantly pull its information from the Zotero application and will revert back to what you have listed there.