Home » Blogs » Stephanie's Thoughts » Google Scholar demystified
Google Scholar demystified
Printer-friendly versionSend by email

Google Scholar logoAnswers to Frequently Asked Questions about Google Scholar.

Q. What is Google Scholar?  

A. Google search for scholarly articles, books, theses on a variety of topics, heavy on science & social science. Good for international materials.


Q. How do I get full-text of articles I find through Google Scholar?  

A. Look for the "find article @ UNC" link to the right of the search results. UNC Library staff have activated "Find @ UNC" within Google Scholar to facilitate easy access to content available at UNC. 

Google Scholar

Q. What is "Find @ UNC"? 

A. Links article metadata to article full-text if available through any UNC-licensed databases (using the OpenURL standard). If the article is in a 2008 issue of Journal of Communication, "Find @ UNC" knows that we have that issue available online through the publisher.

Q. Hey, that doesn't work for me!  

A. It won't if you're off-campus and don't have the magic URL.  If you are off-campus and want to use Google Scholar, use this link: http://libproxy.lib.unc.edu/login?url=http://scholar.google.com/

Q. What do you think about Google Scholar? 


- easy to search
- quick
- good for citation searching (who's cited this article)
- good coverage for international / non-English topics


- can be hard to track down full-text of articles if you don't know about Find @ UNC, or if you aren't logged in from off-campus.
- no clear description of scope or scale of their holdings (are they a science search engine? social science? what Advertising journals are included? how far back is the Journal of Communication indexed?)
- full-text may be from author's website -- which might or might not be the same as the published version 
- some metadata is wacky, leading to incorrect citations (see Peter Jacso's article on "ghost authors")

Q. Hmmm. I don't want to rely on Google Scholar so much.  What else can I do?

A. As part of the UNC community, we have many reliable, scholarly search engines for JOMC-related topics. Those are listed on the Park Library home page.

Read more about Google Scholar from the staff at the UNC Library.

Park Library Chat

We'd love to chat with you via IM, but chat requires JavaScript and may not display correctly if you have JavaScript disabled.

New @ The Park Library

Use @statistaCharts to find great data for all #uncjomc topics. Bit.ly/jomcStatista for free #UNC access. Thx to @uncLibrary!

A photo posted by UNC JOMC Park Library (@jomcparklib) on

Search for Articles+ and Books

Quickly Find Articles+

Find Books & Journals @ UNC


Tweets by Stephanie @ the Park Library


Contact Us

The Park Library
Carroll Hall, CB# 3365
School of Journalism & Mass Communication
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, NC 27599

Phone: 919.843.8300

twitter foursquare Facebook  Instagram

Park Library Hours

Summer Hours: Mon. - Fri. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
See complete calendar