Literature Searching

Who knew it was so hard?!  Well more hard work, than hard to think!

Thousands of databases, endless choices of key words, which to search in first, which combination of words, which words am I leaving out and why?

Do I limit the years, language, journals?  What if I miss a key paper just because it is not in my search, how will I know?!

I think the technology is brilliant, fancy being able to do all that searching so fast, and now export all the bibliographic details straight into tools like endNote etc that is fab, definitely will same me some time when referencing. 

But, why can’t I just download the whole article the same way, not just the bibliographic info, and why has no really clever programmer worked out how to search all the databases at once for me, so I don’t have to look for duplicates.  You know, like all the travel websites that search loads of databases for you to find the best price for your flight and lets you know where to buy it from and has a link straight through to the page!  The technology is there, but not yet being used in the academic world it seems?

Any tips from anyone, is there a secret that I don’t know about that will save time and effort in literature searching for me, or is it still all about plodding through searches wasting the time that I could be using for reading and thinking instead?


About joyfurnival

Interested in TQM, lean, Quality Improvement, Healthcare, Regulation, Accreditation, Inspection Improvement Science, QI, improvement capability.
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