Citation chasing

Lots and lots of questions lately involving incomplete citations, supplements, and my personal bête noir, conference proceedings.

Add these to the list of things I wish they had taught me in library school.

Citations aren’t so bad. PubMed’s Single Citation Matcher is a thing of beauty. Unless of course we’re talking about non-medical citations. Although Web of Science and Google Scholar are pretty helpful with those.

Supplements, I’ve come to accept as an inevitable part of my working life.

And then there are conference proceedings. There’s really no gold standard search for finding the little darlings–good luck if they’re incomplete or incorrect. They won’t show up in MEDLINE or PubMed. Papers First and Proceedings First are not comprehensive. I’ve had some luck with the aforementioned Google Scholar, but I always feel like I’m looking for a needle in the haystack.

I do have to say though that there is nothing quite like the rush you get when you track down the darn thing for the patron. It’s even better when they’re impressed.

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