Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Handsearching complements database searches
Database searches are often supplemented by a manual search, i.e. handsearching. Handsearching can be used to find studies that are incompletely indexed in databases or otherwise not found in a database search.
How to handsearch
- Carefully browse through the main scientific journals and other publications on a given topic. Perhaps you already know the key publications in your subject area or you can look at which journal titles appear most often in your search results.
- Use citation pearl growing strategy.
- Select the most relevant documents from your search results as your 'core documents'
- Take a look at their bibliographies. Many databases suggest similar or related articles and some databases also show articles that cite the article.
- Make use of search engines designed for searching and analysing references, such as: