Geography for Graduate Studies

This guide is designed for masters and Phd students in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies.

Thesis & Dissertation Writing Guides:

  • Mapping your thesis; the comprehensive manual of theory and techniques for masters and doctoral research, LB2369.W49 2011, Floor 4
  • How to do your dissertation in geography and related disciplines, LB2369.P35 2005, Floor 4
  • Research literacies and writing pedagogies for masters and doctoral writers (ebook)

Other Writing Guides for Geography research and proposal writing

  • Communicating in geography and environmental sciences, G70.H35 2012, RSV
  • Making Sense; a student's guide to research and writing: geography and environmental sciences​, G74.N67 2015, RSV

Literature Review Writing Guides

Theses Databases:

Specialized Collections

Help Guides:

Use the library's main search box to search for books, journal articles, newspaper articles, videos, and many other types of published literature. It searches almost all of our collections and databases, simultaneously. If you know the title of a specific book, journal article, or journal, just type in the full title in the search box.

If you are keyword searching:

  • Combine keywords with AND
  • Combine synonyms with OR
  • Use truncation * (asterisk) at the end of a root word to find all forms of the word, ie: mineral* (will retrieve minerals, mineralogy, mineralogical, etc.)

After you get your results, use the filters on the left side of the screen to refine your search

Note: If you are searching from off campus, you must login if you want to be able to access the full text of journal articles and ebooks.

Google Scholar

Search Google Scholar via Carleton Library to seamlessly connect to the fulltext of articles that are part of the library's collection.

Consult the Google Scholar Search Tips guide for helpful more information.

You can also search subject-specific databases to find journal articles. They offer many advanced search features, only contain scholarly literature and search results are more precise. Consult the following recommended lists:

Note: If the library does not have what you need, you can order books and journal articles from other libraries through RACER but you need to register before you can start using it.

Cited Reference Searching is most often used for finding articles that cite a particular work. Many databases provide citation counts for individual articles.

Why is this important?

  • Keeping track of who has cited a given work can help you gauge the impact that article has in the discipline

  • To find citation counts for geography, use Web of Science, or Scopus

  • If the article has been cited, the database will provide a link to the citing articles

  • Cited Reference Searching Help Guide

Search Alerts Help Guide - search alerts are a current awareness service that helps researchers stay current in what is being published in their field via email.

Attend a workshop that demonstrates the common features of several citation management tools. Send an email to to register for a workshop, or arrange for one-on-one consultation.

Consult the Citation Management Help Guide for more information. There are many free citation management systems available. The library provides support for the following:


Sage Research Methods is designed to support researchers with writing a research question, choosing a method, gathering and analyzing data, to and writing up & publishing the findings.

Research Data Management

Research data, in any format, make up the results of observations, findings or outcomes of a research project. This includes any type of data, whether it be qualitative or quantitative. For more information on why you need a research data management plan and how to set one up, please consult the library's Research Data Management web page.

Books & Encyclopedias

  • Research Methods in Geography, G73.R45 2010, Floor 5
  • Conducting Research in Human Geography, GF21.K58, Floor 5
  • Geographic thought: a critical introduction, GF21.C74 2013, Floor 5
  • Geographic thought: a praxis perspective, GF70.G419 2009, Floor 5
  • International Encyclopedia of human geography
  • Methods in human geography: a guide for students doing a research project, GF26.M48 2005, RSV
  • Quantitative geography: perspectives on spatial data analysis, G70.3.F68 2000, Floor 5
  • Practical statistics for geographers and earth scientists, G70.3.W36 2011, RSV
  • Elementary statistics for geographers, G70.3.B37 2009, Floor 5

Nvivo Software

Nvivo is qualitative data analysis software intended to help researchers organize and analyze data, identify trends, and cross examine information in a variety of ways.  Consult the NVIVO service web page for more information about this tool and training workshops.

Web Sites for Statistics and Data

Publishing Guides

  • Publishing in Geography: a guide for new researchers, G74.P83 2009, Floor 5
  • Publishing Graduate Student Research in Geography: The Fundamentals (CURVE repository link to journal article)
  • Communicating Geographical Research Beyond the Academy, GF74.C66 2009, Floor 5
  • Getting Published in Academic Journals; navigating the publication process, Z286.S37P35 2016 RSV
  • Ulrichsweb - provides detailed information on more than 300,000 periodicals of all types and is often used to identify where to publish your work

Writing Guides

Scholarly Communications and Open Access Journals

Graduate Student Open Access Award

  • $1000 award encourages Carleton graduates to make their work more widely available on the internet by publishing research in open access journals

Self Archiving

SHERPA/RoMEO - standard tool for researchers to easily navigate academic publishers' copyright and self-archiving policies when depositing scholarly articles in an institutional repository.

CURVE is Carleton's institutional repository which collects, preserves and provides open access to the academic research output and creative works of Carleton faculty and scholars.


  • What is an ORCID and do I need one?
  • In brief, an ORCID is a digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher through integration in key research workflows such as manuscript and grant submission, and automated links between you and your professional activities.

Journal Rankings and Metrics

Journal-rankings (metrics or bibliometrics) is used to measure the ranking impact of a journal as a whole. They can also be used for:

  • preparing your portfolio
  • assessing the impact and quality of a journal relative to a particular discipline or field through ranking
  • tenure and promotion in academia
  • publication venue choices
  • collection building and assessment

Measuring Your Research Impact


Thesis Guidelines @ Carleton University


Content last updated: December 10, 2019