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GEO314/513 Research Skills Guide: Citation Databases

Why use Citation databases?

Citation databases can be used for cited reference searches, enabling you to find, check and track citation data year-by-year, navigating forward and backward through the literature related to a topic.

You can use a citation database to:

  • Distinguish between authors with the same name, or an author's name that has been presented in different ways
  • Analyse search results to show the number of documents broken down by various criteria, including year, author, source, affiliation, or subject categories
  • Search within results by adding additional terms to the initial search
  • Identify highly cited works related to a particular topic
  • Find related works that share references or authors
  • Create search alerts to keep up to date with developments in your discipline
  • Set up citation alerts to notify you when a document or author is cited elsewhere
  • Set up alerts to notify you about new documents by an author
  • Generate a profile that presents an analysis and citation summary of works published by an institution or author(s), including h-index
  • Compare the performance of journals in a particular subject area

Citation databases

Scopus

Scopus Tutorial: How to use advanced search

Following Citations

There are two ways you can use citations to find additional resources:

Backward. You look at an information source's citation list - this will lead you to material that is older
Forward. You look at who has cited that information source - this will lead you to material that is newer

Following citations backward

This method helps you find information that is older. Keep this in mind if your lecturer would like you to use recent material. 

Following citations forward

Some, but not all, databases have a feature that allows you to see who has cited the article you're looking at. 

The database may not show you every citing article, so you may need to look in more than one database. 

Web of science

Web of science - advanced searching

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