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Basics of Library Research Workshop: Databases & Journal Articles

Learn about your Personal Librarian, database searching and print and online resources.

Find Article Full Text

Follow the Get It! link or  button in most databases to:

● access full text online
● check print holdings of the journal
● request an article PDF via Document Delivery/ILLiad

If you already have a citation, use the Citation Linker to search for your article.

Search Tips

5 tips for planning your search strategy:


1. Brainstorm important terms, concepts, synonyms, and jargon to use as search keywords to describe your topic.

2. Use key topic terms for your search. Examples of words that ineffectively limit your search: effect, cause, pros and cons, increase, decrease.

3. Personalize your results with advanced options or filters including peer-reviewed, full text online, recently published articles, or articles from a particular journal.

4. Certain symbols in your search terms will expand or limit your search results.
   a. Place an asterisk after the root of a search term, for example: teen* finds the words teen, teens, teenage, teenager, etc.
   b. Use quotation marks around words to search for an exact phrase, for example: “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”

5. Databases index by subject terms, allowing users to view predefined words that are accepted by the database. This controlled vocabulary helps you find information even if you don’t know the proper search terms.

Suggested Resources—Sciences

The databases listed here cover subjects in the sciences: chemistry, natural history - biology, botany, and others.

Suggested Resources—Social Sciences

Suggested Resources—Humanities

The databases listed here focus on subjects in the humanities: art, architecture, history, and more.

Subject Guide

Kimberly Vardeman's picture
Kimberly Vardeman
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Texas Tech University Library
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