COG 2013

(Reading this out of order? See Part 1 and Part 2.)

And now… the third and final installment in this series, Extending Your Research.

Getting the Full Text

If you are completely unsuccessful in finding the full text of an article, even after trying the databases in Part 1, your library’s resource, and anywhere else you can think of… there is still hope. Sometimes – sometimes – you can still get the text from somewhere else.

  1. Remember: It is not some sort of debate crime to quote the abstract. If that’s all you can access, don’t be afraid to use it. You may be missing most of the good quotes, but don’t let that prevent you from working with what you’ve got.
  2. Try going to the website of the journal it appears in. Sometimes you can access it directly.
  3. Try to find the full text through direct web searching…

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COG 2013

(Reading this out of order? See part 1.)

Okay, so you found a few (or hopefully, a lot) studies that look promising. Now what? They’re, like, 60 pages each. Nobody wants to read all the way through that much just to get a few good quotes. (Well, except for people like us, anyway.) On to Part 2 of the series: Now What?

Finding the Core

Usually, when confronted with a large stack of digital paper, there are several places you should look first before embarking on a tour of the whole document. In roughly the order most people would/should look, they are:

  1. The abstract and/or summary. Obviously, it’s supposed to summarize what the rest of the paper is about. Reading the abstract usually won’t get you very useful quotes, but it gives you an overview of the issue that’s useful in building your arguments. Sometimes, however, the most succinct…

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COG 2013

There’s nothing that beats a good PhD from a peer-reviewed journal – research nuts (like us) often become obsessed with finding sources with the best possible credentials. The Scholarly Research for Dummies series of articles is designed to give some tips and pointers to budding researchers to help them get up to speed on basic scholarly research. Part 1 is entitled Where to Look.

Google Scholar

For most debate purposes, the single most useful resource is Google Scholar. (Scholar is also accessible from the main Google page by clicking More (on the top bar) and then Scholar.) Google Scholar works just like a regular Google search, but searches a massive compilation of academic journals and other scholarly stuff – so you’re a lot more likely to find an authoritative-sounding study by Dr. Henry Someone, PhD, than a random rant by an unknown person identified only as “xxarg99”.

Google Scholar…

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