Skip to Main Content
ACAP Student Portal Schedule Appointments Room Bookings Contact Us
Search and Discover








My MultiSearch Login Advanced Search Google Scholar PubMed A-Z Journals A-Z Databases

ACAP Library Pathfinder: Systematic Searching for a Review

This guide provides a methodology for planning and creating a multi-database search strategy for students who are writing a review.

Other Information Sources

Whilst databases are an effective tool for finding scholarly literature, they may not be exhaustive, excluding, for example, studies in journals not indexed, or papers incorrectly indexed.

Other methods or information sources you might consider include:

Citation searching

This is a search method that can be done by identifying a key/relevant article and looking forward or backward in time, according to the date of the article. For more details see Citation Chaining.

Grey literature

Grey literature refers to research material that hasn't been published commercially like a book or a journal article. It can be produced by a wide variety of public and private organisations including government departments, community or advocacy groups, and charities. Grey literature can often be discovered using Google or Google Scholar.

Grey literature, such as conference papers, government or other organisations' reports and policies can be an important source for finding the current research findings and the latest statistics and data. However, it is important to evaluate grey literature sources carefully by considering the credentials of the entity that produced the information as there may be inherent biases associated with the production of this information. You may wish to use this checklist created by Jess Tindale (Archived Flinders Academic Commons) to assist you in evaluating content on a website.

For more details, see Grey Literature. You may also wish to browse Useful Websites.

Google Scholar

Google Scholar enables you to search the web for scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts and technical reports. Not everything you find in Google Scholar is fully accessible or free, however, you can connect Google Scholar to the ACAP MultiSearch in order to link to the full-text journals held by the library. If the library doesn't hold the articles, you can request them via the library's Interlibrary Loans & Document Delivery service. 

Visit the Library's Google Scholar page to learn more about connecting your results to ACAP MultiSearch.

Relevant Links