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Introduction to Zotero: Reference Management Tools

An information guide to accompany the iLearnOregon class Introduction to Zotero

Organize Libraries


  • Collections function as hierarchical organizations – similar to file folders on a computer.
  • Set up collections to organize items according to topics that meet your needs (research topics, projects, etc.).
  • Subcollections can be used to organize within main collections.
  • Items can belong to multiple collections and subcollections.


  • Tags function similarly to keywords – set them up as you like to meet your research needs (topic, status, description, etc.).
  • Tags transfer with their associated items between libraries (such as between personal and group libraries).


  • Sort items according to a variety of attributes: title, creator, year, etc.
  • Default sorting columns are: title, creator, attachment.


  • Use the search box to search within the library for items based on metadata, tags, or content.

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