Research Tools


Google Scholar retrieves references to books, abstracts, and ejournal articles from selected university and scholarly repositories. Columbia's Google Scholar link above also provides direct links to the full-text article for materials in our holdings.


Google Book Search searches the full text of books that Google scans and stores in its digital database. It provides online access to full text of public domain and out-of-copyright books, reproduced either from text provided by publishers or by the libraries.

LibX Logo

Guide to Installing Columbia University LibX Firefox Plugin
Use the LibX toolbar to conveniently search Columbia Library catalogs, electronic books, journals and selected databases. You can also follow embedded visual cues from Google Scholar, Amazon, Wikipedia and The New York Times Book Review.

Bibliographic Management Tools


Zotero allows you to collect, organize, cite and share your research sources and enables the download, capture, and indexing of full text from PDFs and websites. The Libraries recommend the use of Zotero due to its open-source pedigree and widespread popularity. 

Click here for a free download of Zotero. Consult the Quick Start Guide for tips and videos on how to get started using Zotero.  Be sure to download a word processor plugin to make the fullest use of this software.

The Libraries offer free hands-on workshops on using Zotero.  You can find information about dates and times as well as register online to attend one of these sessions on the Libraries Workshops page.

Other Tools & Plugins

Proxy Bookmarklet
If you often do your research from off-campus, we recommend you install the proxy bookmarklet on your browser's bookmarks toolbar. The bookmarklet lets you log into the proxy without having to browse from the Columbia University Libraries website.

Libraries Search Plugins
Add our search plugins to Firefox or Internet Explorer to quickly search our website, the Columbia University Directory, CLIO, Google Scholar, and more.

Information about Mobile Resources at Columbia University Libraries
The Mobile Resources page offers a select list of resources for which mobile versions exist.  These resources are mobile browser optimized unless specified by the iPhone or android app icon.

Britannica Widgets
From Encyclopedia Britannica Webshare, these widgets, which allow you to quickly and easily explore a variety of topics, are pre-created and ready to embed into websites.

Oxford English Dictionary (OED) Browser Lookup Tools
When you add the OED to your browser using one of the OED Online Lookup Tools, you can highlight a word on any web page, click on the Search OED Online button on your browser toolbar, and the OED Online Find Word search will display the results in your browser window. (Note: JavaScript must be enabled)

Library tools help you customize your library experience, bringing library services to you. What tools do you use? What would you recommend to other library users? Send us your suggestions!

For help with one of our widgets or tools, send e-mail to: