Citation searching

Learning outcomes

Follow the trail of scholarly communication...

Select a relevant, central reference and then check publications that:

  • are cited in this central reference, as listed in the reference list. This allows you to go back in time and identify publications that the authors used in their article.
  • have cited this central reference, allowing you to go forward in time, and discover more recent articles that built on the work of the central reference.

Tip: You can also track the research outputs and citation activity of a particular author’s published work.

Tools for citation searching


Web of Science Guide explains the importance of cited reference searching, and the process of searching for items that have cited published works within the Web of Science database

Video ©Clarivate Analytics


Scopus explains how to use their author search to locate all references by a particular author. See also Scopus tutorials for further detail about Reviewing search results and Reviewing documents.

Video © Elsevier

Google Scholar has links to ‘cited by’ articles and the option to ‘search within articles’ once you have searched for a known item.

Screenshot ©Google LCC, used with permission. Google and the Google logo are registered trademarks of Google LLC.


Comprehensive searching