A more fruitful journal search


Does anyone else here find searching journals a right pain (through Athens and so on)? Maybe I'm doing it wrong, but it just seems to be slow and frustrating... any tips???


which field are you in?i'm in social sciences,so sporry if what i say is not very relevant to you-also,what do you mean by journal search, trying to find relevant journals in your field or relevant journal articles?anyway,i recommend first of all google scholar-this will weed out most unuseful stuff and leave you with journal articles and book citations.second,web of science is a good thing to play with,third, you could also look into journal monitoring services such as zetoc which will send alerts about relevant articles straight into your mailbox.


the other thing which i found useful was attending the course on literature search provided by my library as part of research training scheme-and you could also try your subject librarian,they really know their stuff. you could also look up some of the general books about doing a phd-quite a few of them,and look up the section on literature search,my favorite one is organizing and managing your own research by phelps et al and they also have a great website, http://www.scu.edu.au/omyr/toc.html which accompanies the book and has some great tips. good luck!


Hi AnnieG - thanks for your reply. I am also in the social sciences.
I meant trying to find relevant journal articles... my searches are just finding nothing of much relevance!


for me, one of the most useful things was discovering citation indexes (google scholar also has that function,just look for "cited by" under the link with the article) - and also,once i managed to locate something that looked more or less useful,i'd go through the reference list and check out the other articles,too - which is really easy on sage or blackwell-synergy,because the reference list comes with links to relevant articles already.Also,I managed to find a bunch of useful stuff by looking at references in already completed ph.d. theses. one more thing-for me, it also helpef to go back to basics and refresh my memory on basic operators in google,hope something helps!


Thanks again AnnieG! :) I have just been having a general look at the things you suggested and I have already found some decent looking articles! EBSCOhost seems to be another good one, which also cross references citings in the article with other articles - I guess it's a matter of spending some more time in front of the computer! (better get used to these square eyes)


also a social scientist, I personally do not find google scholar very useful, as when I'm looking for journal articles published by a particular author, usually I have to click through pages and pages of science stuff first. That's why the web of science is more useful to me because you can limit the search to social sciences. But it is not very complete, so do add searches of "sociological abstracts" and/or IBSS : International Bibliography of the Social Sciences, which should be available through your library. Still, you will find little non-english stuff, so if you want to include things published in other languages you will have to find specific search tools (for German, try WISO-NET).


I have the same problem as you, mokey! I'm really glad I read this thread — some of these tips look really useful.


I too had a similar problem with finding suitable journal articles for my research and this post does provide some really relevant tips. I have looked through Google Scholar and although I did manage to find some related articles, I do not find overall as a very good tool in this regard. I shall take a deeper look at the Web of Science database and hope to find something better.