Information Today
Volume 18, Issue 8 — September 2001
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PsycINFO to Add New Cited References Feature

The American Psychological Association (APA) has announced the planned addition of a cited references feature to the PsycINFO database, an electronic behavioral and social sciences bibliographic resource that contains more than 1.7 million abstracts dating back to 1887.

The basis of the cited references feature is a linked list—appended to the abstract record—of all works cited in the primary document, including journal articles, books and book chapters, published conference papers, and more. From that expanded record, users have several options. They can pull up related articles with one click, or they can click to find all the articles in the database that cited the work. With the cited references, researchers can move forward and backward in time to track research using a specific work as a starting point.

In addition, researchers will be able to link directly from the reference list to an abstract for many, if not most, of the references. From the abstract, publisher links in PsycINFO may take users to the full text, ordering information, or document delivery, whichever the publisher provides.

According to the announcement, development of this significant enhancement to the PsycINFO database was carried out over an accelerated 6-month schedule, and came as a direct response to user requests.

When it's released early next year, the new feature will cover cited references from all journals and books added to the database in 2001 and most of 2000. In addition, all cited references from the PsycARTICLES database will be included from 1986 onward, covering 42 leading journals published by the APA and allied organizations. More retrospective coverage will be added to the databases in the coming years.

"PsycINFO has built a very large file of high-quality content back to 1887, and our rigorous indexing assures researchers of precision in recall," said Linda Beebe, senior director of PsycINFO. "The cited references feature is the third key component of a complete research tool. Providing this ability to track research forward and backward in time is a service to the users, particularly academic researchers, but we also see cited references as an excellent service to other PsycINFO constituencies: the librarians who teach users to search and the publishers whose literature we help researchers find. As we continue to develop PsycINFO, we look forward to working in partnership with them."

Source: American Psychological Association, Washington, DC, 202/336-5500;

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