Web of Science

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This guide will walk you step-by-step through searching for articles and cited references in Web of Science.

Web of Science is a large, multidisciplinary database that covers publications in the following subject areas:
• Biological Sciences
• Health Sciences
• Social Sciences
• Arts & Humanities

Because of its broad scope of coverage, this is a useful database to search if you are conducting inter-disciplinary research.

Web of Science has a particular strength in citation tracking. That is, you can use Web of Science to discover how many times a particular article has been cited by another author. You can use Web of Science to create reports and analyze citation information for scholarly publications.


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Access Web of Science from the library website. Under the “Select a database” menu in the “Find” tab on the top left-hand corner of the screen, scroll down to “Web of Science” and hit Go.

web of science dropdown

If you are accessing the library website from an off-campus computer, you may be asked to sign in with your EUID and password.

Searching Web of Science

1 of 2You should now be on the main Web of Science search page.

We’re going to try a search for literature discussing the reliability of wearable activity trackers, such as a FitBit or Samsung Gear. Since there are multiple ways to describe those types of devices, we’re going to try searching for a few phrases and synonyms to make sure we’re retrieving quality results.

Searching Web of Science

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In the search bar, type “wearable fitness tracker OR wearable activity device.” This way, we are searching for records that include both of those phrases.

Select “Add Another Field,” and type in “reliability” in the second search bar that appears.

web of science search

Notice that you can specify a time span for your search beneath the search box.

Now, hit search.

Filtering & Saving Results

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You should now be seeing a search results page with roughly 50 results.

Notice that on the left-side of the page, you find filters to further limit your search.

Your current search string is displayed at the top of the filter pane, beneath the total number of results. This string will change as you apply filters.

search results

You can limit your search results in Web of Science by:

  • Publication Years
  • Categories
  • Document Types
  • Organizations
  • Funding Agencies
  • Authors
  • And more

Filtering & Saving Results

2 of 6Let’s limit our search to “Sports Sciences” under “Web of Science Categories.” These are subject areas as defined by Web of Science.

Select “Refine” under the box to apply that filter.


You should now be seeing significantly fewer results than before.

Filtering & Saving Results

3 of 6On the right hand side of the search screen, you should be seeing the citation information for each article. By default, results in Web of Science are sorted by their date of publication, however you could change your sort to times cited, or by author name or relevancy.

Change the sort to "Times Cited -- highest to lowest."

highly cited

Your first result should now be the most highly cited article.

Select the link next to "Times Cited" for your first search results. (Note: Your search results may look slightly different than what is pictured here).

Times cited link

Filtering & Saving Results

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You have now been taken to a search in Web of Science for all the articles that have cited that particular piece of research.

citing articles

Tracking citations in this method is an excellent way to expand your search results.

Filtering & Saving Results

5 of 6Hit the back button and go back to your original search results page.

If you were interested in tracking highly cited articles or authors in this field of research, you can use Web of Science’s citation analytic functions to create citation reports.

Above the right-hand citation pane, select “Create Citation Report.”

create citation report

Spend a few minutes looking at the graphs and citation information provided for this search result. Can you think a few ways you could use this information to track your publications or other articles you are interested in?

citation report

Filtering & Saving Results

6 of 6Hit the back button and navigate back to your search results page.

You can select individual records from this page to print out or email using the icons beneath the sort menu.

You can also export this entire list of search results to a citation manage such as EndNote or RefWorks by using one of the export options under the drop down menu that reads “Save to EndNote Online.”

exporting results

Select the first article in your list of results to view more information about it.

Understanding Search Results

1 of 2You should now be seeing the full record view for that article.

You should see the citation information for where the article was published, contact information for the authors, as well as keywords applied to the article to describe what it is about.

record view

Beneath the author listing, take a look at the information provided about the journal in which this article was published.

Select “View Journal Information.”

A new box should appear, providing you with the impact factor of the publishing journal.

journal info

Generally, the higher the impact factor, the more prestigious the journal. If you need to find highly reputable research studies, consider using the journal’s impact factor to make a determination on the quality of the research.

Understanding Search Results

2 of 2Take a look at the Citation Network pane on the right hand side of the page.

citation network

If the article has been cited by another author, you can view the other articles that have cited it.

If you select “Cited References,” you will be taken to a list of resources cited by the author of this particular study within their work.

Again, you can create a citation alert for this article to keep track of how often it is being cited by other researchers.

You can use the same icons at the top of the page to save to a citation manager, print or email the article.

Retrieving Full Text Articles

To download a full-text version of this article, look for the “Lewis Library FULL TEXT” link at the top of the page.

find full text

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.


That's it, you're done! We hope you now feel more comfortable using Web of Science

If you have any questions about this guide or literature searching, please contact the Library Research Services Office, M-F, 8am to 5pm at:

(817) 735-2388

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