I'm working on my thesis and I'd like to see if some documents that I'll use have been used before to see if the topic and focus I'm working on has been done before. At the moment it seems it hasn't, I looked for citations in Google scholar and it has only 1 citation, Academia.edu has around 2000, but I must have Academia Premium to see it. Is there any other way to look for citations? Is it worth to have Academia Premium?

  • 2
    Are you saying that Academia.edu claims that the paper has 2000 citations but wants you to pay to see them? Given how inclusive Google Scholar is this seems highly doubtful. Sep 9, 2017 at 9:56
  • elsevier's free version of scopus, etc.
    – Karl
    Sep 9, 2017 at 14:48
  • Even if subscriptions are required, your library may have access to many of the citation index type publications.
    – GEdgar
    Mar 7, 2018 at 16:39

3 Answers 3


I used a lot Web of Science. You can see who cited what (if it is indexed) and it usually has links to the full text. See its wiki page for more information, including links to other search engines.

Where I work, the administrative staff takes their bibliometrics from Web of Science.

  • Just to add: Web of Science is only indexing certain journals and sources. Google scholar will almost always bring up more results for citing "papers" but there might also be non-peer review results. Imo you should check both and well, Google scholar is free, web of science isn't.
    – user64845
    Sep 9, 2017 at 11:45

For biology and chemistry-related publications you can use Europe PMC as a search engine - it indexes citation counts and is free to use. Since it only shows open citations (those that publishers have made freely available), the citation counts will be smaller than those for the Web of Science, but you can access that info without subscribing. Alert: I work for Europe PMC.


For papers in mathematics and related fields, arXiv tracks how many times a paper has been cited by other arXiv papers. In some fields this might not be useful, but in mathematics/computer science/some fields of physics it’s going to be a very good approximation.

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