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Advanced Research & Doctoral Dissertation

Transition to Known Item Searches

Once you have found one or two good articles, it is time to stop keyword searching!  To find additional relevant articles, look at the bibliography of your chosen article and use OneSearch or Interlibrary Loan to access any items of interest.  Then, use Google Scholar to find new studies that cited your chosen article in their bibliographies (in library-land, we call this citation chains, or bib-chains!).  

Go through the tabs in order to learn about: 

  1. | Bibliographies
  2. | Citations 
  3. | Finding Items by Citation 
  4. | OneSearch & Interlibrary Loan
  5. | Google Scholar & Citation Chains

Scholarship is a conversation in which researchers, professionals, and scholars create new knowledge, discuss and debate ideas.  Providing citations to the ideas of others is the method of entering into and participating in that scholarly conversation.  This enables the conversation to move forward and recognize new voices (like yours!)  


Once you have found one or two relevant articles, the next step is to scroll down and review the citations in the bibliography, or works cited section to see what other voices in the scholarly conversation may be relevant to your topic.  Copy and paste any relevant citations - we'll use that information to look up the item!

Review bibliography citations.  Copy and paste interesting titles

The annotated image above was excerpted from: 

Kirk, E., Howlett, N., Pine, K. J., & Fletcher, B. (C). (2013). To Sign or Not to Sign? The Impact of Encouraging Infants to Gesture on Infant Language and Maternal Mind-Mindedness. Child Development84(2), 574–590.


ACRL. (2016). Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education. Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL). Retrieved from

Now that you have reviewed a bibliography and found some interesting citations to look up, let's talk about how use those citations!

Reading a Citation: 

A citation is like a street address pointing you to the exact location of that content.  You will need to understand the parts of that street address in order to look up the item. Different style guides present the street address in different orders, but with practice, you will recognize the elements regardless of the order they appear in. 

**For our purposes, the information we will need first is the Journal Title (Child Development in the below example.) Go ahead and copy your citation's journal title to your clipboard and head over to the next tab!

bibliography citation elements

Once you have a journal title to look up, watch the video below to see how to look it up in the library's collections. 

While the citations in an article's bibliography are an important record of the scholarly conversation which occurred prior to the publication of that article, we also want to explore the ideas and research which followed the publication of your chosen article.  In order to do that, we will use Google Scholar.  Watch the video below to see this in action, and check out Katie's handy Google Scholar tutorial for more tips and tricks!