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What Graduate Students Need to Know

This guide points to library resources and information useful especially to graduate students.

Citation Chasing

Citation Chasing is a way to retrace the research of the author you are reading. You want to answer to two questions:

  • What is on their bibliography?
  • What research has the author been in conversation with?

When you are chasing down citations, you are looking for books, journal articles, chapters in edited books and other resources that were used as research in your source.


Cited Reference Searching

Cited reference searching is a way to explore the impact your resource has had on other research. The questions here are:

  • Who has used my source in their research?
  • Have many sources used my resource and in what way?

When you are doing cited reference searching, you are looking for books, journal articles, chapters in edited books and other sources that were published after your resource. 


Google Scholar

Access GW Resources in Google Scholar

Using Google Scholar for Cited Reference Searching (A video from the NCSU libraries)


Entering the Conversation

Scholarship is not written a vacuum but rather developed in conversation with other sources. A bibliography is a record of the books, journal articles, newspapers, websites, and other sources that the author refers to in their own work. You can take advantage of this trail of evidence to expand your search.

Once you find a source that seems really on point:

  • Examine it's bibliography 
    • Who were they in conversation with?
  • Find out who put your source on their bibliography
    • Who has been in conversation with them?
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