Zotero is a free* citation manager that will allow you to collect, organize, share, and cite research items. Zotero offers local storage of data on your own computer, online access to your data, and browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox to ingest bibliographic metadata to ease the collection of citations. This digital tool is best suited for those interested in saving citations for long-term research.
*While download and use of the software is free, data storage is separate. Users can store up to 300 MB for free. Annual plans are available for additional storage space.
ZoteroBib (a separate tool) will help you create a quick bibliography through manually entering items or ingesting metadata from library catalogs, newspapers, magazines, ISBNs, DOIs, and more. ZoteroBib generates citations in a browser that can be pasted into a research paper in an array of citation styles including MLA, APA, and Chicago. This digital tool is better suited for short-term research and/or assignment needs.
Have Zotero 5 installed but need to upgrade to Zotero 6?
Getting started with Zotero:
To add a browser connector so that you can click to save research items you find online, go to to Tools > Install Browser Connector > and follow the prompts.
To link your browser connector with your Zotero library and Zotero.org account, you will have to authorize your Zotero account. Go to your browser extension settings and open up the Options menu.
On the General tab, click to Authorize under the Save to Zotero.org heading.