Research


 

Library Research Support

Academic Search Techniques: 

When you search for information online or in library databases you need to have Academic Search Techniques (AST) to get the most out of your time and efforts. You should spend your time effectively attempting to search for relevant information for your research topic. With AST you will be able to find useful and relevant information more efficiently.

Using Keywords

When doing a Keyword Search it is better to pick out the main concepts from your research question/topic. Let's imagine that you are doing research on the following topic - " Effective usage marketing innovations in business management". Here - Marketing, Innovation, Business, and Management might be the main concepts for this research question/topic, isn't it?
You can also use synonyms of the keywords: Management = Administration, Leadership, Control, Supervision, Operation, etc.
Sometimes using abbreviations of the words also might be helpful in your research process - B2B = Business to Business, CMS = Content Management Systems, CRM = Customer Relationship Management, SMM = Social Media Marketing, etc.

Boolean Searching 

Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) are based on an algebraic system of logic formulated by George Boole, a 19th-century English mathematician. These operators help search engines refine, broaden or exclude search results.

The operator AND allows you to narrow down or refine the search results which you want to find. For example, Business AND Management bring back results that include both search terms together and help you to refine or narrow down your search results.

The operator OR allows you to broaden your search results. For example, Business OR Management will broaden your search results because the search engine will bring back any results that have either Business or Management.

The operator NOT (Google Search Engine recognizes the minus sign (“-“), and it must be placed directly in front of the word or phrase without a space.) allows you to exclude words or phrases from your search results. For example, Business NOT Management will bring back only resources about the first search term (Business), but exclude any resources that include the second search term (Management).

Phrase Searching

When you search for a phrase like (Customer Relationship Management) the search engine will bring back any results that have those words in them. However, if you put quotation marks around the phrase, "Customer Relationship Management", the search engine will only bring back results that have all those words, exactly in the order, you have them. This can also be useful when you're searching for the title of a book or other resources.  

Using Limiters

Most library databases allow users to limit their search results by using filters or search limiters. These options have often located in the dashboard on the database search page or at the top of the menu bar or at the checkboxes. Some common and useful limiters include the date of publication, material type, full text, and more.

 

 

Searching is the activity of looking thoroughly in order to find something. In library and information science, searching refers to looking through records thoroughly in order to find desired information.

When you search for information online or in library databases, you need to use Academic Search Techniques in order to get the most out of your time and efforts. You should spend your time effectively attempting to search for relevant information for your research topic. With correct search attempts, you will be able to find useful and relevant information more efficiently. For effective search results, you should be familiar with following terms:

Search Engines

Search Engines (e.g. Google) are based on a software program that searches for sites on the World Wide Web using words that the user designate as search terms/keywords. These have 3 parts:First part is a program called a Spider. The Spider collects data on the web and the second part of the search engine is an indexer program, which organizes data into a large database. When we use a search engine we interact with the third part - the search engine software. This software searches the indexed data, pulls out relevant information according to your search.The search results are presented in a list- known as hits (sites that match your search).  

Keywords

When doing a Keyword Search it is better to pick out the main concepts from your research question/topic. Let's imagine that you are doing research on the following topic - " Effective usage marketing innovations in business management". Here - Marketing, Innovation, Business, and Management might be the main concepts for this research question/topic, isn't it?
You can also use synonyms of the keywords: Management = Administration, Leadership, Control, Supervision, Operation, etc.
Sometimes using abbreviations of the words also might be helpful in your research process - B2B = Business to Business, CMS = Content Management Systems, CRM = Customer Relationship Management, SMM = Social Media Marketing, etc.

Boolean Operators

Boolean Operators Boolean Operators are simple words (AND, OR and NOT) used as conjunctions to combine or exclude keywords in a search. These are used to connect and define the relationship between the search terms. Thus, resulting in more focused and productive results.These three terms are widely accepted by the designers of the search engines. They have well defined meaning while used as operators in information search. The three operators of Boolean logic are the logical sum (+) OR, logical product (x) AND, and logical difference (-) NOT. All the information retrieval systems allow the users to express their queries by using these operators. Let us now understand the implications of these three operators.

OR Operator: The OR operator allows the searcher to specify alternatives among the search terms. When a string is created using OR operator, the search engines retrieve all those resources where any of the terms or keywords connected with ‘OR’ exist. For example, if we create a search string like, ‘student OR education’ and search it, then the output of the search will be a list of references of all those resources, available in the system, where either student or education exists.

AND Operator: The AND operator is used to combine two or more terms. When a string is created using AND operator, the search engine retrieves all those resources where all the terms or keyword connected with ‘AND’exist. For example, if we design a search string like, ‘student AND education’and search, then the output of the search will be a list of references of all those resources, where student and education, both the terms exist.

NOT Operator: The NOT operator is used to exclude the term from a set of resources. For example, if we create a search string like ‘student NOT education’ and search, then the result of the search will be a list of references of all those resources, available in the system, where term student exists but not education.

 

Phrase Searching

Phrase searching helps refine your search by allowing you to look for words together in a phrase, in the order specified. This type of search is supported by most databases. For example, when you search for a phrase like (Customer Relationship Management) the search engine will bring back any results that have those words in them. However, if you put quotation marks around the phrase, "Customer Relationship Management", the search engine will only bring back results that have all those words, exactly in the order, you have them. This can also be useful when you're searching for the title of a book or other resources.  

 

 

 

 

What are Bibliometrics?

Bibliometrics is the statistical analysis of books, articles, or other publications. The analyses are used to track author or researcher output and impact. This can help in promotion and tenure, as well as aiding in funding and grants. Bibliometrics are also used to calculate journal impact factors, which can help you decide which journal to publish.

Journal metrics measure the performance of research and scholarly publications. You can use journal metrics to compare and rank journals in order to make strategic decisions about the best journal in which to publish your research for maximum impact.  

You can source journal metrics from a number of ranking tools. Each of these tools has its own strengths and limitations and measures different elements of journal metrics. The comparison table below will help you use these tools with discretion to judge the most appropriate publications for your research.

Journal metric 

Description 

Source of data 

How to access 

Journal impact factor (JIF) 

  • Identifies the frequency with which an average article from a journal is cited in a particular year. 
  • Use this number to evaluate or compare a journal’s relative importance to others in the same field. 
  • Cannot be used to compare journals across different subject categories.

Web of Science database 

In Web of Science 

 

  • From search results page, click on a journal name in a citation.  

JIF, Journal Rank in subject category and Journal quartile (Q1, Q2, etc.) are displayed. 

 

OR 

  • In an article citation, click on View Journal Impact. 

 

In Journal Citation Reports 

 

  • Search for your journal to see a detailed report, including JIF, ranking and quartile. 

 

Scimago journal rank (SJR) 

  • A journal ranking based on the concept that all citations are not created equal, and some are worth more than others on the basis of the "prestige" of the journal. 
  • The calculation for SJR is The average number of weighted citations received in the selected year by the documents published in the selected journal in the three previous years. 
  • Normalises for differences in citation behaviour between subject fields.  
  • Weighted by the prestige of a journal 
  • Subject field, quality and reputation of the journal have a direct effect on the value of a citation. 

 

Scopus database 

In Scimago  

 

  • Search for a journal by title to see its SJR indicator. 

 

In Scopus 

 

  • From the Document details page for an article, click the journal name. Information includes SJR, SNIP  (Source Normalized Impact per Paper), CiteScore  and subject category ranking/percentiles. 

 

CiteScore 

  • A journal ranking measure reflecting the yearly average number of citations to recent articles published in that journal 
  • Calculated as the number of times documents published in the previous 4 years have been cited in the year of reporting, divided by the number of documents 
  • Cannot be used to compare journals across different subject categories 

Scopus database 

In Scopus 

 

  • Select Sources. 
  • Search by publication title or subject area. 
  • Source details displays CiteScore, SNIP and SJR. 

 

SNIP (Source Normalised Impact Per Article) 

  • SNIP measures contextual citation impact by weighting citations based on the total number of citations in a subject field. 
  • Accounts for discipline-specific differences in citation practices. 
  • Enables you make a direct comparison of sources in different subject fields. 

Scopus database 

In Scopus 

 

  • Select Sources. 
  • Search by publication title or subject area. 
  • Source details displays SNIP, CiteScore and SJR. 

 

 

Eigenfactor 

  • The Eigenfactor score is a rating of the total importance of a scientific journal 
  • The Eigenfactor Score calculation is based on the number of times articles from the journal published in the past five years have been cited in the Journal Citation Reports year 
  • It also considers which journals have contributed these citations so that highly cited journals influence the network more than lesser cited journals.   

Web of Science database 

In Journal Citation Reports 

 

  • Search by publication title. 

 

In Eigenfactor.org  

 

  • Search by publication title. 

 

Alternative metrics  

Identify journals with the most reach and the journals which are read by your target audience. 

Altmetric Explorer 

In Altmetric Explorer  

  • Select the Full Altmetric database. 
  • Enter topic keywords, e.g. plant biology. 
  • Click on Journals tab to see ‘mentions’ aggregated by journal-title. 

(The University of Adelaide, 2021)