preview of the formatted reference

Is there such a feature in Zotero which would allow me to see how a formatted reference would look like? I am using the stand-alone version.
  • Highlight (select) the item(s) in the middle column.

    Right-click and select Create Bibliography from Item...

    Select the citation style you want and select the output (Save as RTF, as HTML, copy to clipboard, or direct to print)

  • Thanks but my purpose is not to create bibliography or output references but rather to be able see how a reference is formatted without leaving the program or exporting the output. Endnote has this feature.
  • Currently, the fastest way to view a formatted citation is to Quick Copy it (Ctrl/Cmd + C) and paste into Word of another program. A preview pane to view formatted citations, along with other changes to the Zotero interface, is generally planned, but no ETA on when it will be implemented.
  • is this feature still in planing? i think it would help a lot.
  • Yes, a feature like this is planned, likely when Zotero migrates to a new development platform and gets an overhaul of its user interface.
  • Hi,

    I recently started using Zotero and love it! Does anyone know if Zotero did add a new button somewhere that allows you to quickly see a preview of your selected citation without having to leave the program? Honestly, it takes time to " Quick Copy it (Ctrl/Cmd + C) and paste into Word" when you have many citations while writing a paper.

    A great place would be next to the buttons I see when entering article information...the buttons are "Info" "Notes" "Tags" and "Related"...why not add a "Preview" button right there?
  • @irinachukhray: No. It still might happen at some point, but could you say more about why you want it? If you're citing many items, you're hopefully using the word processor plugins, and if a citation is incorrect you simply need to correct it in Zotero and click Refresh in your word processor to update all citations and the bibliography entry.
  • @dstillman : yes, I am using the word processor plugin and it works beautifully! The main reason a "PREVIEW" button would be super helpful is to very quickly check that the citation info contains what I want it to contain for 3 reasons...
    1) Under the "info" tab, there is often much more information recorded than what I see when I look at the actual citation (I am using ASA format). If I had the PREVIEW button, I could very quickly check to see if anything that I need happens to be missing (without having to skim through extra info). The extra info (that never makes it into my citation just makes it harder to see the missing pieces (the missing pieces are much easier to see in the completed citation, which is ASA format for me).
    2) I often use Google Chrome to find articles and use the extension button in Google chrome that automatically adds the citation to Zotero. Sometimes, the information Zotero records is incomplete (e.g., it will not pick up the volume number or page numbers for some reason). I need to edit this manually. If I had a PREVIEW button (already in my chosen citation format), I could tell much faster what information may be missing.
    3) Occasionally, I use a research report or a website citation and sometimes the information Zotero records is slightly incomplete. With a report specifically, I often go through the "Copy it (Ctrl/Cmd + C) and paste into Word" steps to make sure I am not missing any information...this really eats up time when citing several reports. It would be so helpful to have a PREVIEW button (already with my chosen citation style) that can show me the citation.

    Finally, I used to be an Endnote user and I used the preview option in that software frequently. Therefore, it is from that experience that I suggest the PREVIEW button and know that it would be extremely helpful to many users. With Zotero, I really only see the completed citations when I am done and I import the bibliography list into is often in this late stage that I recognize that some citations have missing information (since there is no preview).

    Thank you so much for following up! I appreciate your time...happy to answer any additional questions you may have.
  • There's an add-on. haven't tested but sounds like it does exactly what you're describing:
  • @adamsmith: thank you so much! this is EXACTLY what I was looking for! Works perfectly!! Thank you.
  • @adamsmith: HELP please...this morning my Zotero updated by itself to version 6.0 and when Zotero restarted the add-on for the "preview" tab disappeared. In the "Add-Ons Mangers", it says "ZoteroPreview is incompatible with Zotero 6.0"...not sure what to do. I use the "preview" tab daily.
  • Just reinstall the add-on. It's compatible with 6.0 but may not have updated properly
  • Thank you! The Preview tab is back after I did the reinstallation. Many thanks @adamsmith.
  • Unfortunately, it's not compatible with version 7. Any chance of an update?
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