Refining your research focus

Interpersonal Communication

Bibliography mining

During our research meetings, we talked about, and worked through, strategies to find articles related to your main concept, dyad, and subtopic of interest. Your goal was to find an article that discussed all three.

To complete the next step of your Interpersonal Communication Literature Review, you'll need to look at that article's bibliography to find three more resources related to your topic. Here are some tips and suggestions to help you through the process.

Identifying resource types


When looking at the article's bibliography, you may see entire books being cited, or book chapters. When listed in a bibliography, book chapters look very similar to journal articles. To tell the difference, in the citations, look for a publisher and city.

Another good indicator is the presence of an editor or editors (Ed. or Eds.).


Clark, M.S., & Beck, L.A. (2011). Initiating and evaluating close relationships: A task central to emerging adults. In F.D. Fincham, & M. Cui (Eds.) Romantic Relationships in Emerging Adulthood (pp. 190-212). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Journal articles

In the citations, look for a volume number and an issue number (sometimes omitted) and the LACK of publisher & city.

In citations following APA style, another good indicator is the presence of a digital object identifier (DOI).


Aubrey, J. S., Rhea, D. M., Olson, L. N., & Fine, M. (2013). Conflict and control: Examining the association between exposure to television portraying interpersonal conflict and the use of controlling behaviors in romantic relationships. Communication Studies, 64(1), 106-124. doi:10.1080/10510974.2012.731465

Locating the resources


On the library's homepage, type the title of the book into the CardinalSearch search box, select "CardinalCat/I-Share only," and then click "Search." In doing so, you'll be checking our collection as well as all other I-Share libraries for the book.

If the book is only available through I-Share, and you have never requested a book before, you may wish to watch the following Cardinal Research Minute tutorials:

  1. Creating an account in I-Share
  2. Requesting books through I-Share


You have two options:

  1. Again on the library's homepage, type the article title into the CardinalSearch search box, then click "Search." On the results page, scroll through to locate the article. You may need to add the author's name to your search to narrow your results.
  2. Work through the process described in this Cardinal Research Minute video tutorial.

If the article is not available in full-text through our databases (you'll see the "Get Article" button), you will need to request it through Interlibrary Loan. If you have never requested an article before, follow the steps in this tutorial to do so.

Contact me if you have questions

F. Elizabeth Nicholson, Instructional Services Librarian

Office hours: Mondays, 9:15-11:15am and Thursdays, 2:00-3:00pm