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Bibliometrics and Altmetrics: Measuring the Impact of Knowledge: GoogleScholar

Google Scholar - Feature #1

See how many times a document has been cited

Note: Google Scholar includes citations from an array of sources in its "Cited by" calculation, including PowerPoint and Word documents, and gives everything an equal rank.

GoogleScholar - Feature #2

Create a public profile - this profile includes individual's citation metrics as calculated by Google.

Note: A Google account is necessary to create this profile. Follow the instructions at

Online Tools for Enhanced Analysis

Limitations and Criticism

Be aware of some limitations of Google Scholar:

  1. Google Scholar does not index the full text of all scholarly articles. Therefore, some articles citing the item under study may not be counted.
  2. Google Scholar gives everything an equal rank, including PowerPoints and Word documents.
  3. Authors' names can be challenged to search. To improve your search, use only author's last name (no first name or initials) and main title in quotations. For example, bao "superior thermal conductivity of single-layer graphene".
  4. The term [CITATION] at the beginning of an entry indicates that the full text of the item is not accessible through Google Scholar. To see the full text of the item, search Ebsco Discovery Service or A-Z Journal List. If the item is unavailable, submit an interlibrary loan request

For a quick overview of the limitations and critiques to Google Scholar, check the Wikipedia articles:

  1. Google Scholar
  2. Google Scholar and Academic Libraries

For more in depth research from the scholarly community, use...

"Google Scholar" AND (pros OR cons OR advantages OR critiques) 


... as keywords in databases, such as Academic Search Complete , and Library, Information Science, & Technology Abstracts

Keep in Mind...

Photo: Adapted from Colorfully

A citation search in Google Scholar is NOT a complete citation search:


  • "Cited by" links will only include articles that are indexed in Google Scholar. Some material may be missing.
  • You will need to search variations in the author's name since there is no standardized format.
  • There may be duplication of results, so check carefully.
  • You may need to verify that a work is scholarly by checking the Journal Finder.
  • Coverage is primarily medical, scientific, and technical.
  • Coverage is primarily English language.