USMA Library offers its engineering students IEEE Xplore, a most important engineering resource.
Besides being a product of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the leading authority on electrical engineering and computer science, the IEEE Xplore digital library provides online access to almost four million full-text technical publications dating back to 1893, including standards and professional development courses. IEEE Xplore is not, however, limited to electrical engineering as its topic coverage has grown to include materials from overlapping research areas, for example, biotechnology, information assurance, and transportation. In addition to offering IEEE publications, IEEE Xplore hosts publications from several other technical information publishers, for example, the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and IBM. Publications from three new technical publishers were also recently added: Society of Motion Picture & Television Engineers (SMPTE), Beijing Institute of Aerospace Information (BIAI), and Tsinghua University Press (TUP). Table 1 lists IEEE Xplore content coverage in more detail.
Table. 1 Xplore Content Coverage
IEEE Xplore can be searched using keywords, phrases, article titles, authors, index terms, and other criteria. After an initial search, users have the option to view, download, print, refine and search within results lists, view tables of contents, evaluate bibliographic records, and interact with multimedia files, including embedded formulas.
To begin a Basic Search, navigate to IEEE Xplore. The default setting is on Basic Search. The global search box is where users input keyword(s) to be searched within document metadata (not full-text). As an example, the term “Security” has been entered. After the term is entered, click the Search button to the right of the global search box and documents with the metadata term “Security” will be retrieved.
Figure 1. Global Search
The resulting list contains 146,702 documents listed down the lower center of the screen in intervals of 25 (see Figure 2). Users can further investigate a result by clicking on its title. Users can also investigate any one of the other several bibliographic elements included in the citation by clicking on the respective hyperlinked element. A result’s full-text can, in most cases, be viewed directly on the browser in HTML. Alternatively, users can also download the full-text in PDF format.
Figure 2. Results list
Users should keep several things in mind when performing a Basic Search. The default Basic Search is set to only search keywords in metadata, not the full-text of documents. This is fine if you prefer to have more refined initial results. However, if you are not getting enough results you may want to expand the search to allow for IEEE Xplore to search for keywords throughout the full-text. This can be accomplished by first clicking the Advanced Search option (see Figure 3).
Figure 3. Click Advanced Search option
On the next screen (see Figure 4), switch the Search radio button selection from Metadata Only to Full-Text & Metadata.
There are several less known, but very useful literature analytic capabilities offered by IEEE Xplore. To name a few, IEEE Xplore allows users to count citations from patents to research papers. This is a handy tool to trace the intellectual lineage of a technical invention and measure research impact. Similarly, IEEE Xplore can produce a visual display showing citations to and from a given article, allowing users to better grasp the articles sematic context. Users can also quickly identify cutting-edge research articles that are generating social media buzz through the use of altmetric functionality provided by IEEE Xplore.
Who might be interested in using IEEE Xplore?
Uncovering the USMA departments and research centers that contribute publications to the IEEE Xplore collection provides insight into the most common users. Using IEEE Xplore, I executed an Author Affiliation search looking for articles published by USMA affiliated authors. There were a total of 311 publications affiliated with USMA ranging from 1945-2016 (see Figure 5). Out of those publications, 260 were conference proceedings and 51 were journal and magazine articles.
The following USMA departments and research centers were represented among the results:
- Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
- Department of Civil and Mechanical Engineering
- Department of Physics
- Department of Systems Engineering
- Operations Research Center
- Photonics Research Center
Cadets and faculty from the aforementioned departments will find IEEE Xplore an essential information resource.
IEEE Xplore provides several short tutorials that new users may find helpful. The following hyperlinked list presents a few:
- Basic Search with IEEE Xplore
- Advanced Searching
- Working with Results
- Browse Conference Publications
- Browse Standards
- Browse by Topic
- More Tutorials
The views expressed in this post are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government. No endorsement or recommendation of any specific products or services is intended or implied.
Contents contributed by Nicholas V. Olijnyk, Digital Initiatives Librarian