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Zotero Group Library

March 18, 2012

The past two weeks we learned research skills and how to use Zotero citation management software to document our resources. We then contributed a journal article to our group page.

I searched ERIC for peer reviewed journal articles about the benefits of technology in education. I narrowed my topic to college settings. One article that I particularly liked was “Exploring Mobile Learning Success Factors”. It gave a nice overview of a program that integrated mobile technology into a college degree program. It listed five factors that predict success of the integration.

At our campus, we purchase and recommend RefWorks for students and faculty to use as their citation management software.  I am becoming less likely to recommend this software as they seem to be falling behind in the technology arms race.  While I like that it is all web-based, and integrates directly with our databases, Zotero integrates with more resources, and has a more robust notetaking, attachment, and social media features which is the future of citation management. This therefore was a very useful assignment for me to evaluate a product that the librarians have started to discuss.

Zotero can be extremely useful for documenting research; when you find research online you can easily add it to your library through the icon in the URL address bar.  It is less useful for print materials, although you could easily find the online record for the print item (such as the book record in a library catalog or Amazon) to add it seamlessly as well.

Integrating attachment and notes with the citation is a great way to organize your research and keep track of all resources.  When I took notes on my articles, I included quotations and the page number for quotes that I would want to use if writing a paper citing the article. That makes it easy to find, use, and correctly cite direct quotations in addition to using the source generally.

As more coursework moves to group collaboration projects, the sharing features in zotero become even more important. Users can share their documents, attachments, notes, and collaborations to work on projects.

This assignment addressed the following ACET Standards:
3.1 Media Utilization
4.3 Delivery System Management
4.4 Information Management

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