Cited reference searching is a research strategy you can use to find out what other authors/articles are citing a particular work. While it is most common to use this strategy when searching for known items, you can also use this strategy when searching on a topic more generally.
Why use it? This is a great way to find current literature on a given topic as well as to visualize the larger conversation surrounding your research.
Note: Cited reference searching is a great way to find related materials, but you must examine the citation numbers carefully. Some articles are heavily cited because they are important milestones in the literature. Others are cited heavily because they are controversial or contested and are thus commented on frequently.
Only one of our databases is dedicated specifically to cited reference searching: Social Sciences Citation Index. You can locate this database by following the 'databases' link on the library website.
Even though other databases are not dedicated to this type of searching, they can still be useful in tracking citations. Google Scholar and some ProQuest databases like PsycINFO are great options.
To get started, use the tabs at the top of the screen or the navigation buttons at the bottom of the screen to move through this tutorial.
The use of citation analysis to assess research output is contentious.
A large number of citations does not necessarily mean the work should be viewed as authoritative. Work can be cited by other authors for a number of different reasons and some of the recognised drawbacks when using citations are:
Likewise, not being cited does not invalidate a work. There are acknowledged reasons for this: