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CH 398: Research Proposals for Undergraduate Research

A guide to help you find and cite the research you need for your proposal.

Finding What You Need

When you need to include every article written on a topic for your literature review, there is no single place to look to make sure you've found everything but these databases can help!

SciFinder is useful as a means of finding articles based on subjects in biology and chemistry because it has different search capabilities than Scopus. Rather than emphasizing citation analysis, SciFinder instead gives you the option to search for research based on the materials used. Look for "Link to Other Sources" to find the full-text of the articles you want to read, and create a "Keep Me Posted" alert to get notifications when new research on your topic is published.

Scopus tracks how much papers are cited, and it is by this citation analysis that you can get a sense of what people have written and what, based on the citations, are considered foundational papers in the field. You should do your search in both to make sure you're catching everything, as, while there is a fair amount of overlap, they draw from different collections of publications.

If you're working on chemistry research that relates to humans/medical research, consider:

Databases by Subject: Chemistry

You may find what you need in a citation database like Scopus or SciFinder, but if tracking the full text of articles from those databases keeps leading you to a publisher's database, consider doing further searching directly in those sources.

Publisher Databases

Look here for access to journals provided by the journal publishers. Searching a publisher database can be more useful than one of the broader-topic databases if you know that the subject you're looking for is a major focus for a particular publisher, as these databases will have current coverage of some journals we may only have with an embargo in other databases.

Multidisciplinary Journals

Preprint Repositories