Answered By: Mel Ray
Last Updated: Apr 14, 2022     Views: 7

You can import files that contain bibliographic information! These files end in .bib, .ris, or .rdf. Plus, if you have a .txt file that is formatted like a bibliographic file, you can import that, as well.

Screenshot of a file formatted with bibliographic information

To import files into Zotero Standalone

  1. Go to file (top, left corner)
  2. Select import

Screenshot of importing files into Zotero Standalone.

  1. Zotero will ask ‘Where do you want to import from?’ There are two choices.
  • A file (BibTeX, RIS, Zotero RDF, etc.)
  • Mendeley Reference Manager (online import)

Screenshot of where you want to import files from in Zotero Standalone.

  1. Choose ‘A file…’ and click ‘Next’
  2. Locate your file, select it, and click ‘Open’
  3. Zotero will then offer some options:
  • The first is a checkbox to ‘Place imported collection and items into a new collection’
    • If you want to keep track of the files you have imported, keep this box checked. Otherwise Zotero will add the items to ‘My Library’ without organizing them
  • Next there is an option about ‘File Handling’
    • Copy files to the Zotero storage folder
    • Link to files in original location

Screenshot of file handling options in Zotero Standalone.

  1. Choose ‘Copy files to the Zotero storage folder’ click ‘Next.’ 
    1. This is the best choice so that you don’t lose access to original files later.
  2. An ‘Import Complete’ window pops up when the items have been imported
  3. Click ‘Finish’ and you will see a folder under ‘My Library’ with the same name as your imported file

Screenshot of import complete and new folder in My Library in Zotero Standalone.

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