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Penn State University Libraries

User Guide: Navigating the Web of Science Database with a Screen Reader

Contact

  • Adaptive Technology and Services
  • 113 Pattee Library, west
    University Park, PA 16802
  • Phone: 814-865-0284

Navigating the Web of Science Database with a JAWS Screen Reader

The links above will allow you to jump to different content areas on this page.

 

Opening the Web of Science Database

The Web of Science is part of a larger product called the Web of Knowledge. Upon opening the Web of Science, you have the option of searching just the Web of Science or you can choose to search the Biological Abstracts (index to life science journals) and the Journal Citation reports (journal performance metrics) - all of which comprises the Web of Knowledge.

You can access the Web of Science Database from here or from the Libraries' homepage by performing the following steps:

  • Press the keys INSERT + F7 to hear the list of links available on the page.
  • Type the keys D and A and press ENTER when you hear 'Databases.' This will take you to a new page called 'Databases by Title (A-Z).'
  • Next, press keys INSERT + F6 to hear the list of headings on the page. Use the DOWN ARROW to hear the available headings and press ENTER upon hearing 'Search for a Database.'
  • Press the TAB key once to move the cursor to the edit field. Type in 'Web of Science' and press ENTER.
  • Again, you will be taken to a new page that lists the results of your search. The only result available will be for the Web of Science database.
  • Select INSERT + F7 to get a list of the links on the page, type W-E-B-SPACEBAR-O-F and press ENTER. This will open a new window, opening with a redirect page and then taking you to the Web of Science homepage.
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Creating a Search Query

Navigating to the Edit Fields:

The Web of Science Database opens to the Basic Search page. To navigate to the edit boxes where you can enter your search terms, press 'E' followed by the ENTER key. This will take you to the to first of the three edit fields.

Or, you can press the TAB key until you navigate your way into the content of the page - it should take about eighteen times of pressing the TAB key.

Layout of the Edit Fields:

By default, there are three edit fields to enter search terms, three combo boxes to select search fields and two combo boxes with boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) to change the relationship between the search terms - narrowing or broadening your search.

The layout of the search fields is as follows:

Row One: Edit field for search term, a combo box to select search field, auto-populated with Topic

Row Two: Combo box with boolean operators auto-populated with AND, an edit field for search term, a combo box to select search field, auto-populated with Author

Row Three: Combo box with boolean operators auto-populated with AND, an edit field for search term, a combo box to select search field, auto populated with Publication Name.

If you continue pressing the tab button, you will come across a link before the Search button that creates additional edit fields. You can add up to twenty-three edit fields.

You have the option of further narrowing your search by:

  • Timespan
  • Titles of the Citation Databases that will be searched
  • Disallowing lemmatization (finds alternate spelling for the words entered into the edit box - default is for lemmantization allowed)
  • Number of results that appear on the page and their order (default is 10 results per page and newest publications listed first).

Advanced Search Option

The Advanced Search page is intented for experience researchers and employs character tags, boolean operators and parentheses among other search language. For more information about the Advanced Search options, please go to the Web of Science Help - Advanced Search page.

To navigate to the Advanced Search page from the database homepage:

  • Press keys INSERT + F7 for a list of available links
  • Type A - D - V and press ENTER.
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Reviewing Search Results

The results page does not contain any headings. By default, there are ten results listed per page.

There are two manners of getting to results or document titles:

The easiet way is to press INSERT + F7 for a list of available links of the page. Use the DOWN ARROW key to find article titles within the list of page links. Press ENTER once you hear an article title that meets your needs.

Or, you can TAB through the top menu and the the Refine Results menu on the left of the screen. This menu lists options you can select from to further narrow your results. Options include categories, document types, and about another dozen options. If you do not want to refine your results, then press the ENTER key when you hear 'Hide Refine.' This will allow you to move to the search results with another press of the TAB button. Otherwise, expect to press the TAB button about sixty times.

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Selecting Documents

Select either the title of the article or the Get It Penn State button below the title link to access the document.

By selecting the title of a document, you will be taken to the document's full record page, which includes author names, source, times it has been cited, number of cited references, the abstract and much more. At the top of the page, there are action options - you can select the Get It Button to see if the University has access to the full text article, you can print or save the record or you can export it to citation managers, like EndNote or RefWorks. You have these same options at the botton of the page, except for the Get It Penn State Button.

If you select the Get It Penn State Button from the results page, you will be redirected to a new window that will provide links to the article the publishing journal, if available. If it is not available, you will be provided with links that will help you access the article through other means, like Interlibrary Loan.

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