Literature searches with Google Scholar: Knowing what you are and are not getting

Document Type


Journal/Book Title



The Geological Society of America

Publication Date



Whether you are a student developing a senior thesis or a geo- scientist preparing a research proposal, finding relevant concepts, data, and information produced by other geoscientists is a crucial step to eventual success. The quote, “If I have seen farther it is by standing on the shoulders of giants,” attributed to Sir Isaac Newton, acknowledges this fact. Our expanding knowledge base, increasing professional specialization, and greater involvement in interdisciplinary studies make it less and less likely we will know all the useful information important to any study we may con- sider undertaking. For this reason, we turn to scholarly literature to remedy any important deficiencies. For both students and researchers, this has increasingly meant employing Google Scholar.