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Library Subject Guides

2. Find & Manage Research Literature: Google Scholar

A guide to finding and managing your literature

Google Scholar

Google Scholar covers academic journal articles, theses, books and technical reports covering all academic disciplines. Includes works from a wide variety of academic publishers, professional societies and university repositories, as well as scholarly articles available anywhere on the web.

Search tips

  • Use quotation marks for phrases, e.g. "social media"
  • Word order matters - Google ranks the first word higher than the second word and the second word higher than the third etc. 
  • Google Scholar doesn't recognise truncation symbols.  Instead it uses automatic stemming which will automatically search for variations on whole word endings, e.g. diet will find diet, diets or dietary. 
  • Click the menu icon on top left hand side of screen to access an Advanced Search option. This enables you to exclude concepts, search for authors or restrict your search to just the title of articles. 
  • Automatically joins terms together with AND. The more terms you use, the more specific your search.  If you are searching for synonyms/related words, use OR (in caps) between the words, e.g. "social media" OR facebook

More search tips from Google Scholar

Accessing fulltext of articles off-campus

You must select a Library in the settings menu. Once you do this, you will be able to link to the fulltext of articles available via UC Library.

  • From the Google Scholar home page, click menu icon (top left hand side of screen) and select Settings:

  • Click Library Links:

  • Enter University of Canterbury into the Find Library search box
  • Click in the checkbox next to University of Canterbury and click Save

In the search results look for the fulltext@UC library link to enable you to access the fulltext:


Who to Contact

Google Scholar alerts

To set up an alert on Google Scholar:

  • Type in keywords to describe your topic.
  • On the Search Results page, click Create Alert on the left hand side of the screen.

Cited by references

A powerful feature of Google Scholar is its cited by references.  Find out who has subsequently cited a particular article and how a particular piece of research has been developed or interpreted over time. 

More about Cited Reference Searching