Google Scholar search alerts

Searching today for articles about collaborative teaching philosophies (don’t ask)  – I saw this new little icon on the Google Scholar results – how long has this been here?

new search alert icon - Google Scholar result list

I clicked it, thinking it would give me the chance to email results to myself (which is something my students sometimes ask for, though not nearly as often as they ask why Google Scholar won’t format their citations for them).  But instead, it’s a chance to set up an alert for this search.

Google Scholar search alert, with articles only setI don’t actually know that I’ll use this because I don’t really want anything else coming to my email — an RSS feed would be nice.  But has this been around for months and I’ve just noticed it?  That could definitely be true – we’ll see how it works.

making Google Scholar work harder

This was weird. I followed the link from Catherine’s excellent comment on my last post over to her excellent instruction-focused blog and while I was browsing the archives to check it out, I came across this post, which I knew that I was going to share.

It’s a nifty tip on how to force Google Scholar to add a “cited by [insert scholarly work of choice here]” to a regular keyword search.  Or put another way, it’s a way to search within a list of “cited by” results within Google Scholar.  For anyone at an institution that doesn’t subscribe to a lot of databases that support cited-reference searching the value is obvious, but I would suspect most of us have wanted to do just that from time to time, access to Web of Science or no.

Then today, less than fifteen minutes after I browsed that post I opened Google Reader to see that Fred Stutzman has posted today on his (yes, excellent) blog exactly the same solution to exactly the same problem.  His post lays it out in step-by-step format, if that’s what your brain likes.

That’s some crazy synchronicity.