Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday evening research tip

Another good installment in Science and Sensibility's Becoming a Critical Reader series is up. Evaluating evidence! Reading critically! It warms my little public health heart.

Public health researchers (and students!) spend a lot of time collecting, reading, and evaluating literature. My assistantship this year has involved doing a heck of a lot of that, mostly using RefWorks, one of the many commercial citation managers available (there's a lot of hatin' for RefWorks out there, it seems, but it works fine for me and most importantly, it is free through the university.) I recently found out that many of my classmates were not aware of the following helpful trick I've found invaluable when amassing dozens or hundreds of citations. I felt so sad for all the people who didn't know about it, I decided to share it with all of you.

When using Google Scholar, click "Scholar Preferences", to the right of the search box. Scroll all the way down, and where it says "Show links to important citations into" select your citation manager and then click "Save preferences". When you go back to your search page, you'll now see an option under each search result to import it into your citation manager. Click on that, and it will open a new page in the citation manager where you can check, edit, and save the reference. So easy! Google Scholar has its drawbacks, but this is such a great feature that when I get citations from other sources I'll search for the source in Google Scholar just so I can import it. It saves so much time that I had time to write a whole blog post about it! ...But now I need to get back to work.

1 comment:

MomTFH said...

Hmmm, nice tip. I heart Google Scholar. I will have to see if that works for Reference Manager, too, which is the citation manager I use (also free through our library).