How to Boost Your Research and Visibility Using Google Scholar
|Department of Anatomy,
Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences,
College of Medicine,
Federal University Ndufu-Alike Ikwo (FUNAI),
Ebonyi State, NIGERIA.
Google Scholar (The big brother) is an open access (free), large and important bibliographic database. It has over 160 million exceptional documents which is three times the current coverage of competitors like Thomson or Scopus/Elsevier.
It can be used for sourcing journal articles, theses, books, abstracts research reports, dissertations, court documents and technical reports from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other web sites.
How can I benefit from Google Scholar as a researcher?
- Google Scholar can be used to carry out an initial search or scoping exercise for immediately accessible resource. It normally sorts results by relevance ranking. Most cited articles show up higher in the rankings. Hence Google Scholar can be helpful in finding key or seminal authors on a topic since they will be the most cited anyway.
- Google Scholar can identify databases and journal titles relevant to your subject areas or needed for your research.How do I search for articles on Google Scholar?
Google Scholar searches widely, so it is wise to use the “Advanced search” option to customize your searches, and to reduce the number of unwanted results. To access this option, click on the arrow on the right-hand side of the search box as shown below. The advanced search screen will appear. With partial or incomplete information, Google Scholar can bring up what you may be interested. To put it in simpler terms, it can be more “forgiving” than subscription databases and even goggle itself. Amazing right? I know.There is an important thing to bear in mind and that is Google scholar articles are solemnly scholarly works and as such written by scholars for fellow scholars. For those who want just a broad summary of a topic Wikipedia is definitely your friend here.
- Google Scholar goes further to show authors who have cited each work so that patterns of research can be traced as shown in Albert Einstein profile.
- Using Google Scholar you can find articles that have cited you by going to “My Citations” to set up your personal author profile. There you can track your citations as an author.
- You can click on “Cite” to get a suggested citation.
- By going to “Settings”, you can choose which citation manager (such as EndNote) to export your citations to.
- More often than not during thesis write or term paper write up you are encouraged to use up-to-date references by your supervisor. All you need to do is set a date range to only display items within those dates.
- Google Scholar Citations is a tool for setting up author profiles of individuals and their publications. You can benefit a whole lot by generating your own profile. All you need is a Google account to start collecting your publications and metrics. So many researchers refuse to have an account for the fear of “0 Citation”. However, they end up surprised by the number of citations they have gotten over a period of time (provided he/she publishes) when they eventually do decide to have an account.
- Most importantly using Google Scholar you can increase your visibility as an author as well as your connections. After all if your publications and articles are worth spending endless time on, putting in ten seconds into making it a little more accessible won’t hurt. Would it?Now that I know better how do I create a Public profile?Well, I knew you would ask that (Smile). The registration system is very efficient and it guides you every step of the way.Steps:
- You need to have a Goggle mail account. Create one if you don’t have.
- Log on to www.scholar.google.com
- Click on “Sign in” from the right top corner of the web page.
- Sign in with your goggle account.
- Once you have signed in to Google account, the citation sign up form will prompt you to confirm your name, your affiliation, research interest and institutional email.
- On the next page, you will see several articles written by your “namesake”. I mean people with names similar to yours. Click “Add all your articles” next to each article group that is yours, or “See all articles” to add specific articles from that group. Some people still won’t see their articles in this category. If you belong to this group click “Search Articles” to do a regular goggle scholar search, and then add your articles one at a time after which you can sort by citations, year or title. As Simple as ABC.
- Finally you will see your profile. Upload your professional looking photo, visit your institutional email inbox and click on the verification link, double check the list of articles, and, once you are completely satisfied, make your profile public. To make your profile public just check in the box of “Make my profile public” and click on Save.
- I know I said your profile is “complete”. Well, I wasn’t completely honest with you (Smile). Your profile is not “totally complete if you don’t take advantage of Goggle scholar build-in co-authorship network. Adding co-authors is a good way to let others know you are now on goggle scholar and link you up with their latest research.
- You can also create alert for new citations and articles to your profile by following the steps below. Mind you Google alert “alerts” you when pages show up on your search terms at any point on the web while Google Scholar alerts just show you when things are added to Google Scholar’s citations of books, articles, etc.
In case you want to keep track of your citations, there are other services available such as ISI Web of Science and Scopus. And this because goggle Scholar lacks precise searchrefining tools even though it covers a variety of subject areas and journals than Web of Science.10. Remember to sign out after you are through searching the “world”. There is also an option of deleting your account in case you don’t want to be visible to the global community of scholars.
Like most procedure, registering in goggle scholar requires some “care”.
- Ensure your profile is ‘public’. Otherwise your work will be inaccessible to the research community who might want to contact you.
- Never use several goggle accounts otherwise you will leave your “finders” confused.
- It is important to delete all the entries not being authored by you, as the profile can be excluded until it is cleaned.
- You can also help to contact your friends or co-authors if you think their profile is not properly maintained.And the last but not the least!!!!!!!!!
- Promote this idea of Goggle scholar registration in your department and with colleagues.
Help and Advice
For further information on any aspect of what has been written please feel free to contact me on
the above address.
Learning and Information Services (2014) Guide to accessing Google Scholar [online].
Wolverhampton: University of Wolverhampton. [Accessed 06/06/2017].
Randy L. Miller (2013). An introduction to google scholar. Liberty University. Jerry