Where Google Stands on Art: An Evaluation of Content Coverage in Online Databases Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF
Last Modified
  • February 28, 2019
  • Noll, Hannah M.
    • Affiliation: School of Information and Library Science
  • This study evaluates the content coverage of Google Scholar and three commercial databases (Arts & Humanities Citation Index, Bibliography of the History of Art and Art Full Text/Art Index Retrospective) on the subject of art history. Each database is tested using a bibliography method and evaluated based on Péter Jacsó's scope criteria for online databases. Of the 472 articles tested, Google Scholar indexed the smallest number of citations (35%), outshone by the Arts & Humanities Citation Index which covered 73% of the test set. This content evaluation also examines specific aspects of coverage to find that in comparison to the other databases, Google Scholar provides consistent coverage over the time range tested (1975-2008) and considerable access to article abstracts (56%). Google Scholar failed, however, to fully index the most frequently cited art periodical in the test set, the Artforum International. Finally, Google Scholar's total citation count is inflated by a significant percentage (23%) of articles which include duplicate, triplicate or multiple versions of the same record.
Date of publication
Resource type
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Pomerantz, Jeffrey
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • 43 p.
  • Open access

This work has no parents.