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This guide will walk you step-by-step through searching for material in Scopus, a large database of peer-reviewed, scientific literature.
Scopus contains 46 million records of journal articles, conference proceedings, books, trade publications, and patent reports. 95% of the literature in Scopus is peer-reviewed.
Scopus contains all of the titles in MEDLINE (the index of biomedical literature provided by the National Library of Medicine; made available in PubMed) as well as broad coverage of material originating from outside the United States.
In addition to being a helpful source for finding scientific literature, Scopus tracks research conducted by different academic and research institutions, as well as individual authors. You can use their Author and Affiliation searches to track the research output of different authors or your own institution.
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You should now be on the main Scopus search page.
There are 4 different types of searches you can try in Scopus, located in the bar above the search box.
For now, make sure Documents search is selected.
Let’s say we’re interested in finding scientific literature on the effects of meditation and mindfulness on someone’s blood pressure.
In the search bar, type “Meditation OR Mindfulness.”
Next to the search bar, you should see a drop down menu that reads "Article title, Abstract, Keywords." This menu selects the fields in which we are searching for our keywords, "Meditation OR Mindfulness."
You could change your fields to search for a specific, author, title, or various other terms. For now, let's keep our search fields on "Article title, Abstract, Keywords."
Directly to the right of the search bar, locate the blue plus sign. Click on the plus sign to add another search bar to our search.
You can add as many search bars to your Scopus search as you would like, to build more specific searches. For now, we only need two.
In the second search bar that appears, type “blood pressure.”
Notice that the two search bars are connected by a drop down menu with the options AND, OR & AND NOT. You can use these Boolean operators to direct your search.
Beneath the search bars, select the "Limit" menu to open up additional search options, such as publication date and document types.
For now, we are going to search all document types and publication dates.
Hit the "Search" button to run our search.
You are seeing a quick view of each search result, with their title, authors, date of publication, journal of publication, and number of citations.
By default, your search results are sorted by most recent date of publication.
On the top right hand corner of the search results, select “Cited by highest” from the "Sort on" drop-down menu, to sort your search results based on number of citations.
For each article, you can select the number of citations on the search results page to be taken to a list of records within Scopus that have cited that piece of work.
Notice that Scopus provides limiters for:
• Author Name
• Subject Area
• Document Type
• Source Title
• Source Type
Next to each limiter, you will see the current number of titles in your search results that apply to that filter.
Let’s limit our search results to articles (under Document Type) published in 2017 or 2016 (Under Year).
Select “Limit to” to apply that filter to our search. You should now see significantly fewer search results.
**NOTE** Notice that at the top of the page, Scopus maintains a running string of your search, which is updated every time you alter a keyword or apply a filter.
If you wanted to, you could export this entire list of results or select specific articles from the search results menu to export. Either select the check box next to specific results to export them individually, or select the "All" button at the top of your search results.
Select “Export” above the search results list to save the articles to a citation manager of your choice.
You can also save, print, or email your entire list of search results by clicking their icons on the right.
You should now be on the full record view for an article in Scopus. (Note: the image of the article you see below may be different from the article that you selected).
Beneath the citation information for the article and the abstract, you should see lists of several different types of keywords, including MeSH, EMTREE, or author keywords. (NOTE: Some of the most recent articles might not have keywords assigned to them yet. If you have selected an article but don't see keywords, try a different article).
Author keywords are not available for every article. These are keywords that describe what the article is about that were supplied by the author(s).
EMTREE is the name of the thesaurus that Scopus uses to describe articles and make them easier to search.
MeSH headings come from the MEDLINE thesaurus, available in PubMed.
Once you’ve identified an article that meets your needs, you can use these keywords to build another search and find more relevant results.
These are the other pieces of research cited in the article we are viewing. When they are available in Scopus, a link to their entry will be provided.
Take a look at the “Cited by” menu on the right-hand side of the screen. This is where you will find links to all the articles that have cited this particular piece of work. Select an article to quickly view its entry in Scopus.
Select “Export” on the record to quickly export this citation information into a citation manager. Or, easily print or email the citation information.
If it is not, look for the green “Find Full Text” button under every search result or on the article view page. Click that button to download a PDF copy of the article from the UNTHSC library collection.
If we do not have a copy of the article available, you should see a link to “Request item.” Follow that link to place an inter-library loan request.
To run an author search, navigate back to the main search page by selecting the orange "Scopus" icone at the top of the page.
Select “Authors Search” above the search bars.
Try typing in one of your professor’s name, and see if you can find their author entry in Scopus.
From an author entry, you can view all of their publications available in Scopus, as well as what areas their research fall under, the institutions they’ve been affiliated with, and different variations of their name used by different publications.
Try a search for University of North Texas Health Science Center.
Select the affiliation entry for UNTHSC on the search results.
Take a look at the metrics provided for our institution. Here you can find statistics on publications affiliated with an institution, collaborating institutions, authors, and specialty areas.
Scopus is a robust tool that can help you find health science research from all over the world.
If you have any questions about this guide or literature searching, please contact the Library Research Services Office, M-F, 8am to 5pm at:
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