Understanding Zotero


Zotero is a reference management tool. Actually, it’s more like a “personal research assistant” because it helps you collect, organize, and cite sources in your academic projects. There are lots of reference managers out there and, in my opinion, Zotero is the best. It’s free, works with Macs and PCs, and it has a large programming and support community that has grown up around it.

Knowing how to use a reference manager is a requirement for anyone conducting academic research, so I teach all my graduate students at the Translation and Interpreting Institute how to use Zotero during our Introduction to Research Methods seminar. In fact, I created a series of videos for them that I have collected here so that everyone can benefit from them.

These tutorials are divided into six sections:

  1. Installing
  2. Capturing
  3. Organizing
  4. Annotating
  5. Citing
  6. Syncing

You can move between these sections by hovering your mouse over the “Zotero” menu at the top of this page.

These videos cover the basics of Zotero, but there are a lot of resources out there if you would like to go further with the program. Three pages that I would recommend are:

Installing >