HOW TO SEARCH OUR ONLINE DATABASES

There are generally two ways to search for information online - by keyword or by topic.

Search by Keyword

When you search by keyword, the system is looking in the text of all of its cataloged collections for the words you enter. If the word or words you search on are found in many contexts, you may find yourself overwhelmed with irrelevant results. Often by experimenting with different words or combinations of keywords you can zero in on the information you are looking for.

Search by Topic

When you search by topic, you have to know what topics the system has listed. Just as with the Yellow Pages, you may be looking for movie listings, and not think to look under "Theater-Film" for the number.

It can help to look first by keyword, then find a few listings that are close to what you are looking for, and jot down what topics those listings fall under. Then you can look under a specific topic and often find a rich trove of just the information you wanted.

If you can't find what you're looking for

Ask us! See the Ask a Librarian page.


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WHAT IS A DATABASE?

A database is a collection of articles, facts, images and information from all types of publications.

The library subscribes to multiple databases, such as those with issues of popular magazines, textbooks, scholarly journals, trade journals, world newspapers, and specialized encyclopedias.

You have access to all of them just by having a library card.

WHY DO I NEED DATABASES WHEN I HAVE THE INTERNET?

The Internet contains equal portions of treasure and trash. Databases save you time and provide access to high quality information.