We have over 400 databases, which is a bragging point for us, but can be intimidating if you're not working here! How do you even find where to start?
To help you get started, follow these tips:
Here is a great source you should use for a history assignment. Historical Abstracts. This database focuses on countries other than those in North America. To do research on North America, use America: History and Life. Choose the "Advanced Search" option and enter your search terms.
A really useful database for almost any search you would like to do is Academic Search Complete. What makes this one so useful? It covers nearly everything. No matter what your topic there is almost always (see how I worked that in, just in case.....) information on your topic. You can limit to scholarly materials (which is what you use a lot in college) and limit by date. You will set up your search just like the example below. That's true for nearly every database you'll use.
Ask for help if you need it! That's why we're here..... If you've been searching for more than 30 minutes, ask us. It is best if you can contact us before you're crying and swearing....
So, now you've found articles, what do you do next?
For some assignments, you may need to limit to "scholarly" materials or to specific dates. Scholarly materials are written by scholars for scholars. If you can buy the magazine in the grocery store, it's not scholarly. The limit option looks like this:
It is very tempting to limit to "full text". Don't! You'll miss out on a huge number of articles that you should probably see. Trust me.
If your article doesn't have full text ALREADY THERE, click on the blue button: This will take you to what we own and show you where to find it. We don't own everything, but we do have a lot.....
You can save what you want to keep by adding articles to a folder. Click on the folder icon to add your article It will turn yellow once you've added the article to the folder: Access your folder by going to the top of the page
Databases in the EBSCO "family" (America: History & Life and Historical Abstracts are part of EBSCO) can be searched simultaneously by clicking on the "choose databases" link above the search box. Select the additional databases you need and click "ok" to search more than one database at a time. When you do this, leave the search option "Select a field" as it is, rather than trying to identify multiple subjects.
ProQuest also has a "family" and the same tips apply to searching there.
Some search tips: The "select a field" option looks at the title, abstract, subject headings & full-text if available. It's a broad kind of search.