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Course Research Impacts: Finding articles on a topic

Finding articles on a topic

In this part of the course we show you some features of Google Scholar:

  • Advanced search
  • The order of the results in Google Scholar
  • Getting the full-text of an article
  • Creating alerts
  • Exporting records

Advanced search

You can search Google Scholar by entering your search terms in the familiar Google search bar, but Google Scholar also has an Advanced Scholar Search form. You can find this form by clicking the hamburger icon in the left upper corner of Google Scholar. There you can search for exact phrases, words in the title, authors, publication sources and publication years.

Google Scholar Advanced Search

After hitting the search button, you’ll see a list of results. On the top of the search results you see the number of results, but be aware: Google Scholar can only show up to 1,000 results for any particular search query!

Google Scholar search results

At the left side of the screen, you can limit the number of results by publication years. There are some default options, and under Custom range... you can enter your own selection.

The order or results in Google Scholar

According to Google “Google Scholar aims to rank documents the way researchers do, weighing the full text of each document, where it was published, who it was written by, as well as how often and how recently it has been cited in other scholarly literature. If you use the Sort by Date option on the left side of the screen, only results from the current year are returned.

Getting the full-text of articles

When you click the article title, Google Scholar brings you to the website of the publisher of the article, or to the repository in which the article is stored. However, it’s possible the University Library has access to the article, but not through the publishers website. In that case you’ll often get the option to buy the article.
In that case, go back to your search results and click the link . When this link is available, the link resolver will search for the full-text article in the databases the UL subscribes to.

If this link isn’t available, you can also use the link All x versions: sometimes this link will bring you to an author version, saved in the institutional repository of the author.

Creating alerts

Creating an e-mail alert in Google Scholar is easy. Perform a search and click the Create alert button in the column on the left side of the screen.

Make sure the alert fits your requirements (sometimes Google adds ‘in title:’ to your search terms, which means these terms should be part of the article title) and enter your e-mail address. After clicking the button Create Alert, Google will first send you a verification e-mail.

Exporting references

In Google Scholar, it's possible to import titles into RefWorks or other reference managers. Records are exported one at a time. You have to activate this option before you start searching.

Click on the hamburger button in the left upper corner and choose Settings. One of the options is called Bibliography manager. Mark Show links to import citations into.. and choose RefWorks.

Don't forget to save your preferences.

When you perform a search in Google Scholar, you will see the option Import into RefWorks under the titles. With this link you can export the titels one by one.

Please note: Always double check the bibliographical information imported into Refworks!