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Physician Assistant Studies: Google Scholar

Research resources and search tips for UAB Surgical PA students

  Search Google Scholar

Don't pay for full text! Set your preferences to Show LHL Holdings

Google Scholar Search

Tips for searching Google Scholar

Use quotes for author, title, or exact phrase

Use + to include a stop word (a, the, for)

Use to exclude results including the term: Halo –Xbox

Use OR to include either of your search terms: Incidence OR prevalence

Use Advanced Search to find citations for particular articles

Google Scholar

  • Provides an easy way to search the scholarly literature
  • Searches across many disciplines  
  • Finds papers, theses, books, abstracts, articles, and citations  
  • Searches full text of entire article 
  • Is relevancy ranked  (User can choose date range to see historical or new articles)

How Google Scholar Works

Google Scholar has made arrangements with academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other web sites to digitize their articles and include them in search results. There are articles from international journals, meeting abstracts and working papers that can be hard to find. Keep in mind that not all articles are peer-reviewed.

The results are relevancy ranked. Google Scholar explains it "aims to rank documents the way researchers do, weighing the full text of each document, where it was published, who it was written by, as well as how often and how recently it has been cited in other scholarly literature."

Some articles have free full text provided. You can set your preferences to link to UAB full text. If you find yourself being asked to pay for an article you find through Google Scholar, please remember you can request it through LHL's interlibrary loan service while you are at UAB (if UAB does not have it). 

Here is an example of a Google Scholar search:

Using Google Scholar to Complement PubMed Searches

Google Scholar searches the full text of the entire article, so it can bring up articles that are hard to find on PubMed. For example, a search term may be so specific it is not included in the title or abstract, and there is no exact subject heading. Google Scholar indexes PubMed abstracts so articles found in Google Scholar can be linked back to PubMed. Then PubMed features like "related citations" and MeSH Subject headings can be used to locate additional articles and expand your results set in PubMed.

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