Skip to main content

Occupational Therapy: General Research Guide: Library Basics

Research resources for occupational therapy.

Where to Get Help

Research Support (Reference) Desk
(Library North 1st Floor)
404-413-2800

Library Technology Support Desk
(Library North 2nd Floor)
404-413-2699

Georgia State Computer Help Desk
404-413-HELP (4357)

New to the Library?

The GSU Library has extensive collections:

  • 24/7 off-campus database access using your GSU campus ID and password
  • Thousands of journals available online through over 300 literature databases including MEDLINE, CINAHL, ERIC, Global Health, Cochrane Library, SPORTDiscus, Web of Science, PAIS Index, Ageline, Environment Complete, Sociological Abstracts, PsycInfo, Biological Abstracts, Business Source Complete, & Lexis-Nexis
  • Over a million books, e-books, DVDs, CDs, maps & music

Onsite Services and Spaces include:

  • Two buildings - Library North (LN) and Library South (LS) with comfortable seating
  • Over 300 computer workstations (PC & Mac) loaded with software (Microsoft Office suite, SPSS, SAS, EndNote, Zotero)
  • Wireless internet connection & printing
  • Printers (color & B/W), scanners, copy machines
  • Mobile device charging stations
  • Technology Support Desk on LN2 for equipment checkout –  iPads, graphing calculators, cameras, camcorders, in-house use laptops, mobile device chargers, headphones, microphones, cameras and more
  • 60 rooms for group study or to practice presentations; 5th Floor is quiet study zone
  • ESL Tutoring Services on LN2 Link
  • On-site coffee shop & café on LN1

Library Basics

Campus ID
Your Campus ID isn't just used for computer, iCollege and email login. You'll also use it to:

  • Access your Library (GIL) Account to renew your library books, check/cancel your requests, get the GALILEO password, and manage your library account.
  • Access your Interlibrary Loan (ILLiad) Account to request journal articles and books the library doesn't own.
  • Access Desktop Article Delivery (faculty and graduate students only) to request electronic versions of journal articles we own in print.
  • Access Databases from off campus.  Activate your campus ID (or change password) via the Campus ID Help.

Getting Full Text Articles
Databases contain citations, abstracts and often include the full article. You will see the Find It @GSU button next to the citation: . Click the button to see if the item is available in electronic full text or in print. If we don't have an item, you can request it via our Interlibrary Loan service.

Tutorials and Workshops

Tips for Search Success

Don't ever pay for articles!
Always access databases through the Library links.  If we don't have a subscription to a journal, order the article through our interlibrary loan service. 

Do preliminary searches before settling on a topic
Don't assume there will be a lot of information on your topic. Do a few searches before committing to a topic. You may find that you need to narrow or broaden your topic.

ANDs and ORs and NOTs
Combine your search terms with these connecting terms (called "Boolean operators"). Use AND to narrow a search and OR to broaden a search.

Focus on scholarly sources
Use primarily scholarly or peer-reviewed sources. Such articles are typically not freely available on the Web and cannot be found by searching Internet search engines like Google or Yahoo. See the Articles tab above and view this tutorial to learn more.

Search multiple databases
Don't miss the very best book, article, or summary on your topic.

Books vs. articles
Books may be helpful for background information and for familiarizing yourself with a topic. Articles can provide more current information and typically address a very narrow piece of a topic. The scope of your assignment will determine what types of sources are best.

Use the one good resource approach.
When you find a good article/resource, look at the bibliography in the back to see what resources that author used and try searching for them.

Keep a log of your search process
Keep track of what sources and search terms "work" and which ones do not. 

Cite as you go
Write out or save a complete citation for each source you find; you may need it again later.  Use citation management systems like Zotero or EndNote to help you.

Ask a librarian for help! 
Call the Research Support Desk at 404-413-2800 or use the chat box on the Library homepage.