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Research Guide - Finding Articles

Choose and use the best article databases

Choose: Article databases list citations (and sometimes full-text) to articles. They can include citations to theses, dissertations, book chapters, maps, government documents and other items. There are specialized databases for various disciplines. To find the most useful databases for your topic choose one of our Resources by Subject pages. On each page you will find links to the most important databases for that subject plus a list of web sites, books and other related resources.

Use: Each database includes help documentation. Reading these help pages is highly recommended. Three keys to successful research are:

  1. Read the screens
  2. Persist
  3. Ask for help

The following documents can also help:

If you would like more advice on researching your topic, or using a database, Ask a Librarian.


Locate a journal

The easiest way to find a journal is to search for the journal title in the A-Z Journal List. In its upper left hand corner is a Find box. Type in the title and click the Search button. Unless the library does not subscribe to the title you need, the A-Z Journal list will either list links to electronic copies online in databases or journal packages, or it will give you a link to "Check the Library Catalog for print coverage". See also Electronic Journals on the Periodicals Collection web page.

Using the following journal citation as a sample, you would search for the journal title Rendezvous.

Swanson, Merwin R. "A Community at War: Pocatello, Idaho, Idaho and WWII." Rendezvous. Vol. 22 No. 2 1987 pp. 1-13.

The search results give this information: Call Number AS30.R44, Location Idaho Documents (3rd Floor). The Library has Vol. 1 (1966)— which means we have all the volumes to date. So the library has the needed volume and issue.

Another way to do the search is to use the Library Catalog. Search for the journal title. Choose "Journal/Magazine/Newspaper Title" in the list of choices under Search by, and do the search.


Identify scholarly journals

The key to finding scholarly articles lies in being able to tell the difference between a scholarly journal and a popular magazine. While a few databases — for example, Academic Search Complete — allow you to limit your searches to scholarly articles, some of the databases subscribed to by this library do not have this option.

For information about the differences between scholarly and non-scholarly periodicals, see Scholarly and Non-scholarly Sources.

For information about locating either a print or electronic copy of a scholarly article, see Finding Full Text Articles Online and in Print.

If you would like more advice on researching your topic, or using a database, Ask a Librarian.


Find newspaper articles

To find newspaper articles, try using one of the library's newspaper databases and selected web sites. These can be found through the Resources by Subject page for Newspapers (Current and Historical). The Online section on the Newspapers Collection page may also be of interest.

Many of these databases contain electronic full text of articles, but for some newspaper titles, especially older newspapers, you may have to search the library's print and microform holdings for your article.

To find newspaper articles in print or in microform

  1. Search the Library Catalog for the name of the newspaper you need.
  2. To locate Idaho and other newspapers in print in the Library, see Current Newspapers Available on the 3rd Floor, Oboler Library.

For detailed information see Newspapers.

Last Modified 08/22/2014 kk