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CHEM 300 - The Literature of Chemistry (Schmidt)

This guide will help you get started with your research for CHEM 300.

Overview of Day 4

In this lesson, you will:

  • learn about citation tracking
  • learn how to search Web of Science


  1. Read through the "Web of Science" material presented below, and watch the included video. 
  2. Complete the Looking Forward assignment (included in Cougar Courses).

Looking Forward

Web of Science

Previously you've "looked backwards" in time by using an article's references, but now you want to go forward. To do this, you will use the Web of Science, a subscription citation index available through the Library.

What is Web of Science?

A citation index is a particular type of bibliographic index (e.g., the bibliographic databases you've searched before - PubMed, Academic Search Premier, etc.), that allows you to easily discover which more recent documents cite which older documents. So, while a journal article's list of references allows you to see older cited sources, a citation index allows you to find newer sources that cite your original journal article. In other words, Web of Science allows you to find your article in another article's bibliography. 

Learn more about how citation indexing works:

You might be asking: How is this different from Google Scholar?
You can also use Google Scholar to conduct citation tracking (find the articles that cite the article you search); however Google Scholar goes through less quality control, so you may have to put in a bit more effort to sort through all of the results you get back to find the really good ones.