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CRIM 3500 - Advanced Criminal Procedures

This guide provides best practices for searching Google Scholar and other powerful databases - for using reference lists to connect to related research - for determining if a journal is peer-reviewed - and for requesting articles not owned by the UNI Rod

Advanced Google Scholar Techniques

                 

                        
Use Google Scholar "carefully" to locate research articles in Criminology:

  

Quotes” and the intitle: command

   

 

 

Use the command  intitle:  in Google Scholar to search for words in the title of the article. Use quotes to search for phrases.

 

When searching for a phrase in Google Scholar use quotes to "lock" the phrase in place ...   e.g.,  "racial disparities"

 

The intitle: command allows you to search for a word or phrase in the titles of articles and books ...
e.g.,  intitle:"deadly force" ... 
e.g., intitle:discrimination  

 

Important - the intitle: command must be typed in all lower-case letters and the word or phrase to be searched must be immediately adjacent to the colon at the end of the intitle: command.

   

Set your publication date to recent years.

 

Use the Google Scholar Custom Range of dates on the results page to focus in on years of interest.

Google Scholar ranks your results in part based on the number of times an article has been cited.  Since it takes a while for even the best research articles to accumulate a large number of citations this means that Google Scholar will tend to display older research.

 

 

Since Google Scholar only displays roughly 400 results - it might be useful to reset the search results to multiple publication date options for topics that produce many results ... e.g.,  2010-2022 or 2020-2022 or 2022-2022 

 

 

Problems with Google Scholar:

 

 

Though Google Scholar covers a vast expanse of research it is also very problematic. For each potential secondary source you will need to answer the following questions: Is this an article from a peer-reviewed history journal - or - is this a scholarly book?

 

 


 

Many of the sources in Google Scholar are neither journal articles nor scholarly books . A source found in Google Scholar might instead be a conference presentation, a thesis, a dissertation, a magazine article, or a student essay.

 

 

 

 

    
 

 

 

 

To determine the name of the journal that contains your article - type the paste the title of your article into Google Scholar - then click on "Cite" - the name of the journal will be in italics - and it will appear just before a string of numbers that includes the article page numbers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Though Google Scholar covers a vast expanse of research it can also be problematic. For each potential source you may need to answer the following questions:
 

  • Is this an article from a journal?
     
  • Is this an article from a peer-reviewed journal?
     
  • Is this an article from a peer-reviewed criminology journal?
     
  • Is this an empirical study? (Is it a research article?).

 

 

 

 

Peer-reviewed criminology journal? Research?

Many of the sources in Google Scholar are neither journal articles nor research articles. A source found in Google Scholar might instead be a conference presentation, a thesis, a dissertation, a magazine article, or a student essay.

 

 

 

 

Peer-reviewed journal?

To see if the article you have found comes from a peer-reviewed journal use one of the three methods for checking peer-review under the Is It Peer Reviewed? tab on this website.

 

 

Peer-reviewed criminology journal?

Click on the Google Scholar "Cite" option under the record for your potential secondary source.  The journal name is found directly in front of the volume, issue, and page numbers. The journal name should be in italics.
  

To be sure you have a criminology journal article check the journal name against the List of Criminology Journals

 

In this case Prison Journal is listed in the List of Criminology Journals

 

 

 

Research article? Empirical study?

You must inspect each article to determine if it is an empirical study. While many articles reporting quantitative research studies contain the sections Methods (or Method or Methodology), Results, and Discussion - quite a few will lack some of these sections and some research articles may not use any of those terms. Research articles reporting qualitative research may be even more variable. To be certain you should check with your professor ... or your librarian.

 

 

Can I limit to "research" with Google Scholar? ...... Perhaps? ...... Try including "results" and "discussion".

Though Google Scholar doesn't have an option to limit to empirical studies (research) you might be able to modify your searches to increase the odds of retrieving research articles.

Since most research articles include sections titled Discussion and Results you could include both of these words - in quotes - as part of your search.

Try adding the words "Discussion" and "Results" to your Google Scholar search to increase the likelihood of retrieving research articles.