Skip to Main Content

IDIS 435: Google Scholar

Why Google Scholar

Google Scholar is a search engine that finds sources on the academic web. It functions differently than the library catalog (for books) and article databases, since there is no overall context other than "academic sources on the internet." However, it is very useful for interdisciplinary research because you can search many terms simultaneously and get a fairly useful outcome. Refer to the boxes below for the best ways to use google scholar. 

Using Google Scholar to Search SU Resources

Instructions on how to set Google Scholar up to search SU resources:

  • in Google Scholar, expand the menu options and click on the settings icon
  • select the middle option: Library Links
  • search Salisbury University (if you are on campus, this will appear automatically)
  • save your settings
  • Voila! Search away!


Creating a Search String

Google Scholar is a search engine. The set of information that it searches -- the Academic Internet -- is not contextualized according to topics (it's basically everything!). This means that you, the researcher, need to provide the context. A good way to do that is to be generous with your search terms. Use as many as you need in order to get a set of results that appeals to your topic. Some examples:

  • "public health" "mental illness" treatment policy sociology
  • marketing environmental sustainability "public policy"
  • exercise well-being workplace happiness labor

Hot Tips for Google Searching

Google Scholar provides some sophisticated methods for searching:

  • If the author's name is highlighted, you can click the link for more information, including other articles they wrote and what topics are their expertise
  • If you click "cited by" under the citation result, you will get a new list of articles that cite it. This is helpful so that you can see how other authors have utilized an article you might also use