How to do research in Google Scholar?
Anyone looking for academic information on any topic, whether out of work or curiosity, can enjoy learning how to do research on Google Scholar, the best platform for that purpose.
Keep reading our guide and find out exactly what it is and how to use it completely!
1. What is Google Scholar?
Google Scholar is a free search engine offered by Google that indexes the entire text or metadata of academic literature available in various newspapers, formats and disciplines. It can be used to correct texts, as a source of data and information, and can help a lot of people who have to work at home.
It was launched in 2004 in beta and, currently, Google Scholar is the best service of its kind for anyone looking to do academic research, including books, theses, dissertations, abstracts, pre-publication libraries and scientific articles, among a myriad of other options .
It does not have an official number of the size of the database of this platform, but researchers estimate that it has around 389 million documents, which include articles, citations and patents, being the largest search tool in the world.
Something that has served as a source of criticism about it is the fact that Google does not have a newspaper verification process that includes it, which results in it being possible to find many unreliable and even predatory sources.
In addition to obviously being able to do research on Google Scholar, the platform allows its users to perform several other functions, which makes it really excellent.
- Search for academic information from around the world in one place;
- Explore related works, citations, authors and publications;
- Find the complete document through your library or on the internet;
- Keep up with the latest updates from any research area;
- Check who is citing your publications, and can also create a public profile;
- Rank documents in the same way that researchers do, so that the best and most reliable sources appear at the top of the results;
- Create your own library on the web, in order to always have easy access to the articles that interest you most.
2. How to do research in Google Scholar?
Now that you have a good idea of what Google Scholar is and how it works, we will teach you how to use it fully, so you can find exactly what you want.
How to use?
The first step in using Google Scholar is to go to the official website of the platform through the link in any of the best internet browsers, where you will come across a very familiar interface, which is really similar to the Google homepage.
To search, just type the term you want to find, or the area you want to have more information. With that, you will see all the results that contain the search term. You can filter your search and change how the results are shown through the menu on the left:
- Filter by date: By default, the search will show results for any date. However, you can select years (such as “Since 2020”) or filter for a specific period, being necessary to enter an initial and final year;
- Change the rating: By default, results will be ordered by relevance, using the criteria that Google prefers. However, you can change to sort by date;
- Change the language: By default, results will be shown in any language. It is possible to change to sample only results in Portuguese, so you don't have to use Google Translate to read;
- Whether to include patents and citations, by checking and unchecking the boxes below.
When doing research on Google Scholar, it is possible to further refine the results using Advanced Search. This can be done through the menu in the corner of the screen, represented by the three lines. Click on it and then "Advanced Search".
There, you will find the following search options:
- Find articles:
- With all the words: If you search using this box, the results will contain all the words you type;
- With the exact phrase: Through this search box, the results must have the exact phrase to type, without any changes;
- With at least one of the words: It will search for all the words you typed and show all the results that have at least ONE of the words you typed;
- Without the words: This is the search for exclusion, which will not show any results that have the words written here;
- Where my words occur: You can define whether you want your search terms to be present anywhere in the result, whether in the title or body, or if you want them to be exclusively in the title.
- View articles by: It will limit the search on Google Scholar to only authors who have the name to write here;
- View articles published in: It will limit the results to newspapers or magazines whose name you type here;
- Display articles dated between: It will delimit the results for those that have been launched between two specific years (or, if you type just one year, from that to or until that year).
To add articles and results to your library, just click on the star icon just below them. To see your created collection, click “My Library” which is below your account image.
Finally, it is also possible to configure alerts about certain search terms. To do this, it is necessary to click on the "Create Alert" on the left of the screen.
It will be necessary to configure the alert, writing the term you want to be searched for, the email you want to receive them and the amount of results per alert.
So, did you like our guide on how to do research on Google Scholar?
Leave in the comments what you think of our tutorial, saying if you like this platform or if you prefer another one for your academic searches. Also, check out our guide to other Google tools, such as Google Maps, Google Earth, Google Street View and Google Drive!