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How to ... Google


What is Google Scholar?

Google Scholar is a search engine for academics. The results of your search are usually scholarly articles, journals, and books.


How do I access Google Scholar?


How do I use it?


If you enter a few keywords, it will retrieve a list of articles that are relevant to those keywords. For example, if you want to review the literature on elementary school bullying, you could enter the words: elementary bullying or primary school bullying. 
Either set of keywords should produce a list of results.

When Google Scholar displays the list of results, you won't be able to access all of the publications on the list. Here is what you can do to access them:
  1. Set the Google Scholar Preferences to link to UTL, so if you find an article via Google Scholar, there should be a link to the article in our database. To set preferences go to Google Scholar Preferences.
  2. Jot down the name and author of the book /article and then check to see if it is in the OISE or University of Toronto Library. You will have to access the University of Toronto Electronic Library.

How do I refine my search? 

Try a Boolean Search (AND, OR, NOT)

Example Search String:
hollistic OR belonging OR community +facebook
OR - broadens your search (all the OR's have to be capital and be INFRONT of the final AND which is a + sign with no space in front of the final word.)

Narrow down your search to the type of document you need

To just get only the pdf's (which tend to be articles) type: inurl:pdf (space)(and the searching words as above with Google Scholar)
Don't forget Google Books as a possible search. For example you need it because there are not a lot of articles written on your topic yet.

How do I know if the article I am reading is an important one?

High Citation Count

When you do searches on Google Scholar, notice that many of the results you get back contain a count of the number of times that the article has been cited. A high citation count is often considered to be an indicator that the paper is an important one in the field. So consider reviewing the highly cited papers first.
If you click on the words "Cited by", you will get a list of all the articles that cite the current article. This is another useful tool for finding relevant papers.

Commonly referenced articles

As you read through journal articles, pay close attention to each article's "background" or "literature review" section. Look for references that might be helpful for you. You may start seeing the same paper cited over and over again in many of the articles you read... that's likely an important paper that you should also retrieve and examine.

How do I organize my references?

Go to Google Scholar Preferences and add a link to RefWorks (see Bibliography Manager drop-down menu).
Go back to Online Library, Student Info page  for more information about using Refworks.

Where do I learn more about searching in Google Scholar?

Go to Advanced Scholar Search Tips and read more about fine-tuning your search terms.


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