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Using the Web as an Aid in Research - Fixing Bibliographic References

The Problem

Sometimes when doing research, you will discover a bibliographic reference [a citation to a book, journal article, conference paper, etc.] that causes you problems. For example, it might be to a journal article, but may be missing the volume and year, which will make it difficult to find. Or, the volume and year for a journal article may not match up properly, so there appears to be a mistake in the bibliographic reference.

A Fast Web Solution

Before search engines like Google became so large, librarians usually solved problems like this by consulting an appropriate journal index (for journal articles) or large library catalogue (for books) to find a full and correct reference. But this can be a rather time-consuming process, even with online journal indexes and catalogues.

Nowadays, using Google can often solve (but not always) problems like this very quickly.

A Demonstration

Here is a Demonstration to show you how to find information that will help you fix a bibliographic reference without going to standard library tools, like online catalogues.

Practice Example

Here is a Practice Example to give you some practice in fixing bibliographic reference without going to search tools that the Library subscribes to, like journal indexes. It states the question first. After you have done some work, we will go down to the bottom of that page and see a suggested answer to the question.

Librarian, Information Services and Resources, Davis Centre Library
Last Updated: October 18, 2004