An easy way to update your literature review quickly

By James Hayton,
August 7, 2019
James Hayton is a former physicist, PhD coach and author of "PhD: An uncommon guide"
Since 2010, he's coached hundreds of individual PhD students and now offers
group support and online courses

If it's been a while since you last looked at the literature (or a specific area of the literature), here is a very quick way to find recent relevant papers.

Pick a few (5-10) important papers you already know are relevant to your work or the area you want to look at. It's highly likely that anyone doing similar research will cite some of the papers you already know about. So if you look up those papers on the journal's website and check the "cited by" information, you can find some recent gems.

This is especially useful in the time between submission and your thesis defence.

See also

How to grow your bibliography from just one paper

Join the discussion...

Join James Hayton's PhD discussion and support group on Facebook to discuss this post and connect with other students

Stay up to date...

The PhD Academy:
Online training and support for PhD students

learn more...

For more detailed guidance and support...

The PhD Academy All-Access Pass

Weekly calls with James

You don't have to do it all alone! Get the All Access Pass for weekly group calls and Q&A sessions with James

Every online course

Build your skills and confidence with our detailed video courses. Go at your own pace and get advice and support when you need it

Get the book!
PhD: an uncommon guide to research, writing & PhD life

order now on amazon