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Art History: Step 5. Searching Strategies

This guide demonstrates the Art History research process, gives examples of art theories, searching strategies, and links to citation help.

Tips for Using Summon

Summon is the library's main search engine. The short video below gives you tips on using it effectively. For Art History, use the "Discipline" filter and select the "Visual Arts" when starting your research, especially when searching for journal and magazine articles. You'll want to expand out to other disciplines for broader research but that will help you find research on your chosen piece and/or artist.

Summon is also the ONLY way to search all of the eBook databases in one place. Use the "eBook Full Text Online" filter to search for eBooks.

Using the Library Catalog

The library catalog is the best place to search for books. Watch this short video for tips on using it like a research expert.

Librarians use a specific vocabulary to describe resources, including subjects. Keyword searches are a good way to start, but subject searches can be more specific. Try choosing "subject" from the drop-down menu in the catalog or a database and searching for some of these suggested subject terms.

To identify the subjects used to describe a book (or an article, if you are using a database), look for the "subjects" at the bottom of the full record. To discover more resources in these subjects, just click on the link!

Best Bets for Art

Library Image Databases

The following databases are available to BGSU faculty, staff, students, and walk-in users.