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All Online Tutorials

Step-by-step videos and strategies for using the library's most popular resources.


Google Scholar searches multiple sources for scholarly literature [e.g. journal articles & books].  



  • Familiar Google interface - easy to search
  • Very broad coverage
  • Integrated citation information and author profiles
  • Results can be linked to the library collection (Get it @ Mac)
  • Limited search capabilities and very large result sets make precision searching impossible
    • No subject headings
    • Limited sorting and filtering options
    • Algorithm-based (takes the control out of the searcher's hands)
  • Not clear how "scholarly" is defined [leads to some questionable results]
  • Lacks the focus and quality control present in other scholarly databases


Linking Google Scholar to the Library Collection

Linking Google Scholar to the library collection will give you full text access to results available through McMaster libraries.  Establishing the link is easy:

  • Visit
  • Click on the Table of Contents Icon  at the top of the page.
  • Select "Settings" from the drop down menu.
  • Select "Library Links" from the menu down the left side of the page
  • Enter "McMaster University" into the search box
  • Click the checkbox beside "McMaster University Library - get it @ Mac" and click save

The "Get it @ Mac" button should now appear beside results in Google Scholar.  Follow the "Get it" link to see if McMaster has full-text access

"My Citations" in Google Scholar

My Citations is a researcher profile tool integrated into Google Scholar. When you create an account, Google will automatically search for publications it believes to be yours and ask you to verify these citations as your own. You can also add citations manually for any publications that Google may have missed. 

As you continue to publish, your My Citations profile will update automatically, always asking you to verify the citations it finds before adding them to your profile.

Please Note: Setting up a My Citations profile requires an existing Google Account [i.e. Gmail account]. If you don't have a Google Account, set one up here.


Key Features

  • Automatic profile updates
  • Basic citation metrics [e.g. citation count, h-index, i10 index]
  • Does not assign Unique Identifier, but can be easily linked to other identifiers [e.g. ORCID; ResearcherID]