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BEE 6940: Intro to Zotero: Collect, Organize, Cite, and Share Your Information: Groups

Use this free tool to collect webpages, article citations, PDFs, job ads, and more. Organize into folders, create tags, share information with colleagues.


Zotero's Groups feature allows you to share references with other Zotero users online. It's a great way to work on collaborative research projects.

  1. Set up Zotero sync as described in the "Zotero Sync" box
  2. Log in at There's a "Log In" link in the top right corner of the page.
  3. Search for existing public groups or create a new group. Groups may be public (searchable, and anyone can join) or private (users can only join if invited).
  4. You should now have two sections in your Zotero collections pane: My Library and Group Libraries. You can drag items back and forth between them at will.
  5. To join a group, search for the group first. Click   then follow the instructions.
  6. If you own a group and wish to invite member, go to Member Settings and click on Send Invitations.

Zotero Sync

Syncing your library means backing up your citations on Zoter's server. This way you can access your citation remotly and retrieve them if something happens to your personal computer.

This arrow will appear in your Zotero library. It will spin when it is uploading your citations.

If you're regularly using more than one computer in your research, Zotero's sync feature can keep your library up to date on all of them.  Zotero can store a copy of your library on the server and check it for updates whenever you open your library on a different computer.  All your computers must be running the same version Zotero and be configured to sync to the server.

  1. Set up a free user account.
  2. Open Zotero preferences (via the gear menu) and select the Sync tab. 
  3. Enter your Zotero user name and password. 
  4. Check the "sync automatically" box.  Zotero will upload your library to the server. 
  5. Repeat this configuration on each of your computers.  Any updates you make on one of your computers will be reflected on the others.  This even works to synchronize your library among Windows, Mac and Linux computers.


For more details and help troubleshooting sync problems, check the Zotero site.

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