Wednesday, 13 February 2008

Google Scholar and citations

Google Scholar can be used to track citations to your publications using the Cited by feature. Search Google Scholar scholar.google.com for an article you have written. It helps to use the Advanced Search to make your search as precise as possible. For example combining a surname (Author) with keywords from the title (with all of the words). If Google Scholar locates your article click on the Cited by link where present to see who has cited you in their own paper.

You can learn:

  • if your article has been cited even though it does not appear in ISI's Citation Indexes;
  • who is citing you? What aspects of your article are they picking up?
  • how many times have you been cited? Rank your articles in order of citation counts.

Results need to be treated with care:

  • Google Scholar will find citations in forms of publication e.g. PowerPoints, conference papers and unpublished papers as well as multiple citations to the same reference. This will inflate your citation count;
  • there is no consistent overlap between ISI Citation Indexes. ISI will find citations not on Google Scholar and vice versa - there have been a number of research studies to demonstrate this;
  • there is no way of knowing which publications and publishers are excluded from Google.

The ISI Citation Indexes remain the 'gold standard' for citations. Google Scholar does provide good intelligence especially where publications are not in the ISI Citation Indexes.

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