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Literature searching: How to find and use databases: 6. Recording

An introduction to undertaking literature searches. Planning your search, selecting search terms and constructing searches. Evaluating material you find, and recording and referencing the sources you use.

Recording the sources you find

Make sure you record your research.

Recording helps you to keep in control of the research process. You don’t want to miss out key resources or spend time searching a database you already searched! 

Recording what you find will also make it easier to create references and bibliographies in your work.

Reference management software, such as EndNote, can help you with this.

What to record

You need to record information that enables you (or someone else) to locate the source again.

You will probably find it best to record information in the form used to cite the source in a reference list, footnotes or a bibliography.

You may also find it useful to record the tools you used to locate sources (e.g. SUPrimo, individual databases, etc.) and searches carried out. (This information is not necessarily included in the final work, but helps you keep track of your research.)

How to record

You may already have a method of recording and referencing that you are happy with.

However, you may wish to consider how online tools such as reference management software (bibliographic management software) can help you.

The University Library supports EndNote Online and EndNote (Desktop) packages. You can find out more about these in the following guides: