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John Peterson

5 Expert Tips to Use Google For Academic Research

When it comes to finding information of any kind and on any subject, Google is the ultimate king of search. If you’re conducting academic research, Google Scholar is where you’re likely to begin, though you might also want to delve into specialized databases that cater to specific subjects or groups of institutions.


Oftentimes though, if you’re able to maximize the features of Google Scholar, you’ll find all the information you need on there, along with the references and other metadata to support your report, article, book or any other publication. Here are a few expert tips to help you make the most of Google as you conduct your research:


1. Go from General to Specific


If you’re fully familiar with the subject you’re searching about, then you’ll likely be able to construct exact search queries composed of just the right keywords to get the information you need. On the other hand, if the subject is not something you’re too familiar with, then it would be helpful to use general terms and then mine the results for the specific, technical keywords that are common in reference to what you’re actually searching for.


2. Set Alerts


One of the most helpful features of Google Scholar is that you can easily set alerts for search terms that you’re particularly interested in. When you input your search query and then save it, you’ll get notifications whenever there are new resources (articles, journals, books etc.) that mention the search term. That way, you’ll be able to stay on top of any topic without having to trawl through search results over and over again.


3. Compile a Library


Just as you would physically collect articles, journals and books that you are interested in, you can also use Google scholar to set up a virtual library where you can save all the publications you want, along with bookmarks that’ll allow you to jump to specific references conveniently. Be sure to arrange them in a way that will make it easy for you to go through the collection and find any particular one you’re looking for when you need chemistry homework help or for any other subject. You can also use the search function within your library too, so keep note of keywords in different publications.


4. Automate Your Citations


Below every resource and publication you come across in Google Scholar, there’s a button that’s shown as double quotation marks, and it’s one of the most helpful tools you’ll be using, especially if you’re working on a large project that involves a lot of references. When you click the button, you’ll get a window with different citation options based on the common style guides such as APA, Harvard et al and you can simply select the one you’ve chosen to work with.


5. Use Incognito Mode


Google Scholar tracks your search history to provide you with results that are tailored toward your previous searches. While that can be beneficial in several instances, there might be times when you want to start afresh and explore different directions with your research, apart from what you had done before. In such instances, just open Google Scholar in incognito mode for a fresh search experience.