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Scopus: introduction & overview

This guides provide an introduction and overview of Scopus

Affiliation search

When you search by affiliation, just type the affiliation's name. The search will begin to auto-populate.

For example, try a search for University of Victoria and note how the results change depending on how the search is expressed. Typing Victoria will return a number of options for selection. 

Author search

When you search by authors, you can search by last and/or first name. You also have the option to search by ORCID.

Document search

Documents include journal articles, book chapters, conference proceedings, articles in press and data papers. Follow the steps below to learn how to perform a basic document search:

  • Enter your search terms into the Search documents box [1]
    • By default, Scopus will search Article title, Abstract and Keywords of documents
  • You can specify in which fields to search using the drop-down menu [2]
  • Use the +Add search field [3] option to add additional fields 
  • Each new search field is combined using the Boolean operators AND, OR, and NOT [4]
  • To see a complete list of advanced field codes, select Advanced document search [5]

Search Tips

Search Tips in Scopus

  •  loose phrase, use double quotation marks

 “heart attack” will search for documents where heart and attack appear together 

  • asterisk is a wildcard

 “criminal* insan*” finds criminally insane and criminal insanity. 

  • exact phrase, enclose the phrase in braces  { }

Note: {heart-attack} and {heart attack} return different results, as the first will search for results that contain a hyphen between heart and attack

Secondary documents

Scopus also features non-Scopus references, called ‘secondary documents’. These documents are not indexed in Scopus due to three possible reasons:

  • They are retrieved from the references or citations of the documents that are covered by Scopus
  • Scopus is unable to match documents with certainty due to incomplete or incorrect data
  • There is missing content

To view these non-Scopus references, click ‘View secondary documents’ above your search results.

Cited reference search

Scopus provides the ability to search the list of cited references in articles, books, etc. If the reference which you are starting with is very relevant to your research, other related publications have probably cited references which are also relevant to your research. Cited reference searching is a useful extension to your standard keyword search.

Advanced document search

The Advanced Search option allows the user to create complex searches.

Also available from the Advanced Search are 16  pre-constructed searches to match 16/17 of the  UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Creative Commons License
This work by The University of Victoria Libraries is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License unless otherwise indicated when material has been used from other sources.