Repurposing Zotero for sustainable assessment and scalable modified embedding

Rebecca Zuege Kuglitsch (University Libraries, University of Colorado Boulder ,Boulder , Colorado, USA)

Reference Services Review

ISSN: 0090-7324

Publication date: 9 February 2015



This paper aims to describe a new application of Zotero, a citation management system, for embedded librarianship and assessment. It explores student reception of this approach and maps Zotero’s capacities to represent citations to learning outcomes and information literacy frames that instruction librarians assess.


The librarian worked with a course using Zotero group libraries for collaborative work, used Zotero to communicate with students and assess their information literacy skills and surveyed the students to determine their perception of librarian participation via Zotero.


Using Zotero’s features made it possible to formatively and summatively assess student work quickly, and students were receptive to librarian participation via Zotero.

Practical implications

This suggests that librarians facing difficulty embedding in online courses or those seeking to assess student work may wish to explore Zotero as a sustainable solution to both challenges.


This paper posits a solution to common challenges for online embedded librarianship and suggests a new technique for assessing student information literacy in a context that supports information literacy.



Kuglitsch, R.Z. (2015), "Repurposing Zotero for sustainable assessment and scalable modified embedding", Reference Services Review, Vol. 43 No. 1, pp. 68-80.



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Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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