Finding and Managing Literature

Scientists have to gather, read, and keep track of a huge range of papers and source materials. Here I have gathered a few resources and ideas for managing this without losing complete control.

Searching for Citations

There are a lot of databases out there for searching, more all the time. We have a number of excellent ones available through the University of Utah libraries and here are some pointers to my favorites.

The new policy from NIH on public access to publications will also change the landscape as more and more papers start to populate the database.

General Search Sites

Note: please send me links to publicly accessible literature databases in the areas of engineering and for conference proceedings. Pubmed and Medline have the medical world covered very well but Engineering is missing such a reference.

Journal Search Sites

Lots of journals now let you search and even download articles, a wonderful way to avoid a trip to the library.

Getting articles

While we have access to many journals through the library (thank you, University of Utah!) and PubMed Central (thank you, NIH) there are times when we need additional resources. For this, we have ILLIAD. Here are the steps to getting an article from this system.
  1. To do this, go to the ILLIAD website
  2. Login or click the First User link to set up an account.
  3. On the left is a menu bar, select the "Article" option under the "New Request" Heading Fill in the required info about the article and submit it.
  4. Within a few days, they will send it to you. NOTE: You can only request 10 per day and they will reject it if you can find it by some other (free) means, so make sure that it isn't available over PubMed or IEEE or google scholar. (I've also been rejected on one published by KIT in a german journal).


Managing your own reference database

Done stupidly, managing a literature database can be as much fun as visiting the endodontist, but there are smarter ways to go. Use them and your visit to the dentist becomes a chat with the nice lady who cleans your teeth. Some sensible ways to manage references are:

Reviewing Links

Guidelines for Authors

Here are pointers to the guidelines that we use when submitting papers to different journals.

Last modified: Thu Dec 10 16:50:29 MST 2020