The Internet has made a radical difference in providing access to information quickly and broadly. However, not all information is available on the Internet, and of the information that is on the Internet, not all of it is free or reliable.
One example of information that lives on the Internet but costs a substantial amount of money to provide is the information found in the databases that BGSU Libraries subscribes to. What are databases? For the most part, our databases help you locate articles, ebooks, and images, among other resources, on a particular topic and frequently link you to full-text electronic copies of articles--in other words, articles you can access and email or print from your computer.
There are several benefits to using library databases:
The BGSU Libraries subscribes to more than 250 different databases, some of which are interdisciplinary, covering a wide variety of subjects, and some of which are for a specific discipline, like psychology or business. With so many databases to choose from, you need to make use of the subject categories and additional information to help you select one or a few.
Visit our Ask Us! page to explore a variety of possibilities for getting help.
A Good Starting Point: Using Academic Search Complete to Locate Articles
A good place to start your research on almost any topic is Academic Search Complete. This is a large scholarly, multi-disciplinary, full-text database designed specifically for academic institutions. Containing full-text to thousands of scholarly publications, this collection provides coverage for nearly all academic areas of study—including social sciences, humanities, education, computer sciences, engineering, physics, chemistry, language and linguistics, arts & literature, medical sciences, ethnic studies, and more.
|Connect: Academic Search Complete (an EBSCO database)|
Need some help? Check out EBSCO's Basic Search Video Tutorial
Once you retrieve a list of articles on a given topic, you’re still not done. Browse through your list of results, read abstracts when they are available, and identify potential sources meeting your needs.
After you identify a potential source, your next step is to find out whether or not the article is available full text or in print.
Find It! is a mechanism embedded in most databases to help users identify potential sources of full text and print options.
Whether you're searching Summon, Google, or a database, several general core research concepts apply. Check the help pages of any tool for more specific guidelines.
Most of the EBSCO databases, including Academic Search Complete, have a visual search feature that can help you explore your topic and figure out search terms. Watch this short video to see how it works: