Basic Database Searching

Basic Database Searching

You have to find an article on climate change and your professor expects you to use college worthy sources. Google is not an option. Now what? Well, let’s take a look at the HACC database EBSCOhost. To get started type your search term climate change in the search box. Press enter or click search to see your results. Your search gives you thousands of results But who has time to look at all of those articles? If you look to the left you’ll find several options for narrowing your search that will improve the likelihood you’ll find an article you can use. Under the heading “limit to” click on FULL TEXT This reduces your results list by removing any results that don’t include the complete text of the article. Now let’s think about date range. For some topics and assignments we may want
to look at older articles for historical information. However, for this assignment
and topic we want more up-to-date information. Let’s stick to articles that have been published in the past 10 years. There are two ways you can do this. One is to click in the box to the left of the words publication date and type in the oldest year your professor will accept. The second is to click and drag
the left slide bar to the right until you see the year you want in the left
box. Now that you’ve set the date range
according to your needs you’ll see the heading source types depending on the requirements of your assignment you can choose articles from the source required. For example, if your professor wants only scholarly sources then you can select academic journals and the results list will show only articles from scholarly sources Great, now you’ve narrowed your results
list. It’s time to take a look at what you have. You’ll start by reading each title to determine if the article has the information you’re looking for. When you find an article that looks interesting and is about your topic you’ll want to read the abstract. The abstract can be viewed by placing your mouse over the magnifying glass to the right of the title. This brief summary of the article will let you know if the material in the article is useful to you. Let’s say you’ve read the abstract and the article is definitely something you need. Click on the title of the article to open the full record. Review the article information and make sure you’re meeting the requirements of the assignment. From this screen you can email your article and even get help with the citation. When you click on the citation icon a pop up window with several different citation styles will appear. Scroll down inside this window to locate the style you need for your assignment. You can copy and paste what you need into a Word document. However, remember that these citations could have errors. So make sure you double check for accuracy. In order to access the full-text of this article look to the left side of the screen. Under the heading detailed record you may see more than one option. In this example we chose PDF full text because that option will show us the most complete version as it appeared in print including all of the images charts and graphs. In order to download or print your article use the icons inside the PDF window. If you would like more information on how to effectively search in the HACC databases check out our other videos or contact a librarian for help.

Daniel Ostrander

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