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Citation Searching   Tags: citation searching, citation tracking, journal ranking  

Last Updated: Jul 31, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Citation Searching

Citation Searching refers to searching for articles that have cited an older publication.

Citations can be traced through the use of several tools that are available on the market. 
The three primary tools are Web of KnowledgeScopus and Google Scholar

  • Web of Knowledge(about)  Contains the three citation indexes that have existed since the early 1960s:
                Arts & Humanities Citation Index - Indexes over 1,300 journals.
                Science Citation Index - Indexes over 6,650 journals.
                Social Science Citation Index - Indexes over 1,700 journals.

  • Google Scholar:  Another useful option for citation search, but one that is an anomaly in the
    library profession.  While it tracks citations for articles from both books and articles, the folks
    at Google do not share the list of what vendors are involved in the project and so librarians
    cannot tell with any certainty just what it is searching.  
          Links to articles about Google Scholar's coverage are below:
    Peter's Digital Reference Shelf.  Google Scholar Redux.  June 2005.
                    Google Scholar Duped and deduped -  the aura of robometrics.
                     Jasco, Peter.  (2011)  Online Information Review.  35(1), pp. 154-160.
  • Scopus:  (about)  is not available at the Sprague Library.
    Tracks citations in over 18,000 publications, over half of which are from Europe, Latin America and Asia.
    Over two thirds of the coverage is in the hard sciences, with the remainder being in the social sciences and psychology.
    Note:  The nearest libraries that currently subscribe to Scopus are the Van Houten Library at NJIT and
    the Chang Library at William Paterson University
    To access it you will need to go to the libraries in person.

The citation indexes are strongest in the sciences with Scopus including over 12,000 science and medicine titles and Science Citation Index over 6,100 titles.  Coverage in other fields is markedly less comprehensive.  In the social sciences Scopus covers around 2,700 titles and Social Sciences Citation Index covers around 1,700 titles.  Arts & Humanities Citation Index includes approximately 1,300 publications and is the only tool for tracking citations in those fields.

Suggestions for additions to the guide, ways to make it clearer or for new resources that would add to the depth of the library's collection are welcome.

-William Vincenti

Reference Desk:  973-655-4291


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