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OCNG 689 -Communicating Ocean Sciences  

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Class Guide for OCNG 689 -Communicating Ocean Sciences

Conducting a Good Literature Review in Oceanography

Be sure to use variations on your terms to find all that is available.

1) Search for journal and conference papers in article databases:

Search for your topic in Oceanic Abstracts:
Your results will likely include papers and presentations from conferences, so bear in mind that a conference abstract is not the same thing as a journal article abstract.  Conference abstracts are published in the conference program and primarily serve to make attendees aware of the topic of a poster or oral presentation at the conference.  Although some topics presented in oral form at a conference may appear later in conference proceedings as full articles, often this is not the case.  So, the existence of a conference abstract does not necessarily mean that there is an accompanying paper.  However, sometimes the author may have chosen to write up the presentation and submit it to a journal, so be sure to search for it, but don't expect the title to be exactly the same as the presentation title.  Regardless, for desired items in Meteorological & Geoastrophysical Abstracts, just click on the 'Find Text at TAMU' button to get a copy of the article of the book, journal article, conference proceeding, etc. 

Other Library Databases
If your topic crosses into the environmenatal realm, be sure to search the database,
Environmental Sciences + Pollution Management.

And if your topic crosses into the Atmospheric Sciences realm, be sure to search the database,
Meteorological & Geoastrophysical Abstracts.

Again, in using these databases, for desired items, just click on the 'Find Text at TAMU' button to get a copy of the article of the book, journal article, conference proceeding, etc. 

2) Search for you topic in Book Sources

Check for books on your topic in LibCat and WorldCat.  LibCat indexes the table of contents of books if your topic happens to be covered in a book chapter.

3) Don't Forget to Check Theses and Dissertations

-a sometimes forgotten step in literature reviews
Check ProQuest Dissertations and Theses - Full Text

4) One More Helpful Step!!
As you gather together your collection of articles, books, proceedings, etc., track down the items cited within them to find more important sources.  You'll see duplication, but sometimes you'll find new and sometimes very relevant sources that didn't turn up through other means.

Other Key Databases

The one key library database for Atmospheric Science will always be Oceanic Abstracts.  The other databases you might occasionally need would be NTIS (CSA) to also catch publications by the U.S. government. For additional sources for research that includes environmental aspects, the database Environmental Sciences + Pollution Management is an excellent resource.

Environmental Sciences + Pollution Management
Abstracts and citations from over 5980 serials including scientific journals, conference proceedings, reports, monographs, books and government publications. Major areas of coverage include: Agricultural biotechnology; Air quality; Aquatic pollution; Bacteriology; Ecology; Energy resources; Environmental biotechnology; Environmental engineering; Environmental impact statements (U.S.); Hazardous waste; Industrial hygiene; Microbiology related to industrial & environmental issues; Pollution: land, air, water, noise, solid waste, radioactive; Risk assessment; Safety science; Toxicology & toxic emissions; Water pollution; Waste management; Water resource issues. Allows simultaneous searching of the following Cambridge Scientific Abstracts databases: Conference Papers Index; Environmental Sciences and Pollution Mgmt; ASFA 3: Aquatic Pollution and Environmental Quality; EIS: Digests of Environmental Impact Statements; Meteorological & Geoastrophysical Abstracts; NTIS; TOXLINE.

Meteorological & Geoastrophysical Abstracts (1974 to present)
Meteorological & Geoastrophysical Abstracts (MGA) contains records drawn from the World's literature on meteorology, climatology, atmospheric chemistry and physics, astrophysics, hydrology, glaciology, physical oceanography and environmental sciences. MGA is produced by the American Meteorological Society and is published by CSA.

The NTIS database indexes US government sponsored research, and worldwide scientific, technical, engineering and business related information. It is the central source for the sale of unclassified and publicly available information from research reports, journal articles, data files, computer programs and audio visual products from Federal sources. Additionally, information is available from international government departments and other international organizations including those from Canada, Japan, the former Soviet Union, Western and Eastern European countries. This database is produced by the National Technical Information Service. Most items are available in the microfiche collection at Evans Library.

For more databases, see my Oceanography Subject Guide at:


    Science & Engineering Librarian, MS Geology


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