Web of Science (WOS) analyzes the impact of history journal articles. In other words, find out who is citing whom, when, and where in the journal literature with WOS. Start with a list of the author's publications, preferably from a CV or bibliography. Do not begin your search hoping to identity a list of the author's works or even a single work in WOS, as this can be both difficult and unreliable; better tools exist for identifying an author's corpus (see Historical Abstracts and America: History & Life, below). In WOS the author's name must be entered into the database in a particular way. It is therefore recommended to search by the author's last name and first initial, e.g. <Clancy F*>, in combination with a second search facet such as cited year(s) of publication.
There are three citation indexes in Web of Science, all of which are turned on by default: Science Citation Index (SCI), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), and Arts & Humanities Citation Index (A&HCI). Each index covers journals in its respective broad area of knowledge. Even if the author is not a scientist but rather a social scientist or humanist, stick with the default search for the most comprehensive results.
Follow these steps to search Web of Science:
You might wish to review our Scholarly Credentials Toolkit page for additional tips and a lengthier tutorial.
Google Scholar incorporates a cited reference search that is upending our traditional reliance upon Web of Science. No comprehensive analysis of an author's corpus can afford to overlook Google Scholar. Look for "Cited by X" in the relevant citation of the Google Scholar results list. Note that Google Scholar is the best tool for analyzing the impact of a book or a book chapter as opposed to a journal article. Traditionally it has been very difficult if not impossible to analyze the impact of a book, so this is yet another way in which Google Scholar is changing the game.
Google introduced a "limited launch" of Google Scholar Citations on July 20, 2011. The company opened up the database to anyone interested in creating a profile on November 16. Like the more traditional Web of Science and SCOPUS databases, Google Scholar Citations tracks citations to scholarly publications. But unlike WOS, Google Scholar Citations tracks a range of scholarly works from conference proceedings to books. It is easy to create a profile and well worth doing so, in my view, with one caveat: Google has a spotty record of supporting projects with a necessarily limited audience (recall, for example, the unfortunate consequences of Google's acquisition of Paper of Record).
America: History & Life and Historical Abstracts are core history databases. Together they offer the most comprehensive indexing of the journal literature. Indeed, the combined number of journal titles indexed by these two databases is sufficiently large so that even a simple author search can broadly determine quantity of scholarly output. The databases can often be used to confirm partial or suspect article citations and/or create a bibliography of journal articles written by an author. A cited reference search has been added to both databases, but it is not available if searching the databases simultaneously.
Follow these steps to perform a cited reference search in America: History & Life and Historical Abstracts:
Academic Search Premier (ASP), another database available on the Ebsco platform, offers a cited reference search. Since ASP is the Libraries' most comprehensive periodicals database, it is well worth including in any comprehensive search for cited references. As above, choose "Cited References" from the blue bar at the top of ASP's homepage.
JSTOR has earned its reputation as the premier scholarly journal archive. The database offers a cited reference search but not from the basic or advanced search screens. Follow these steps to perform a cited reference search in JSTOR:
The problem described in the JSTOR box to the left, namely the failure of a formal cited reference search to find all relevant citations, points to a basic rule of citation searching: No single database, not even Google Scholar, can be relied upon to reflect the true and complete number of works citing another work. It is always possible that important citations will be missed by the databases discussed in this guide. Your best strategy is therefore to piece together the most comprehensive results possible by searching multiple databases.
The databases listed in this section invariably provide duplicate references. One way to easily de-duplicate your results is to import them directly into a folder in RefWorks, an online tool acquired by TULibraries to help researchers manage and organize their citations.