Skip to main content

SSP112: Using Library Databases to Find Articles

When Should I Use a Database?

Since Primo Library Search includes articles in its results, you may be wondering why you would bother to search in a journal article database. There are several reasons for using an individual database:

  • Noise - Say you're looking for information on zombies (computers that distribute spam) and you find articles on the walking dead, philosophy, anthropology, and other subjects; using a database that specializes in computer literature lets you focus on your topic
  • Bells and Whistles - Some databases have specialized subject headings and powerful search features; most let you search within the full text of articles
  • Thoroughness - not all database articles are included in Primo Library Search, for technical reasons; Education Full Text and CINAHL (Cumulated Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature), and the databases on the Databases on the Web guide are not included in the Library Search 

Databases for Finding Articles on Controversial Topics