There are three ways that you can get to the library's databases,
from off-campus (as well as from on-campus):
If you are off campus, when you click the name of a database, you will be asked for your Campus ID and password. After that, you'll have full access to the database*. But in order to get that access, the database has to identify you as GSU faculty/student/staff.
*There are a very few databases that you can't access this way (looking at you, Ancestry Library Edition) and are only usable in the actual library building). These are clearly marked in the database listings as ON CAMPUS USE ONLY.
Most databases have an Advanced Search option, which will let you search using multiple terms at once. For example:
An asterisk (*) is a truncation symbol that will bring up results using all the letters leading up to (or following) the * -- so, Islam* will bring up both "Islam" and "Islamic" etc.
The search string in the third box got cut off in the image: it should be lgbt or gay or homosexual or lesbian or bisexual or transgender or queer -- the "ors" mean that you're asking for articles that use any of the terms linked by the "ors"
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A database's Advanced Search option will also let you limit your search in a number of ways, including:
For example, here are some options that often appear in Advanced Search:
Different subject databases may have other options as well, but most of our databases have these as Advanced Search options.
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One box that you SHOULD NOT CHECK is the "Full Text" box. Sounds backwards, I know, but here's why:
Many databases will give you only the citation for a particular article and not the full text.
But! We have lots of databases, and the article that you need may be in a different database.
If you find an article that you want, and it looks like we don't have full text, click the blue "Find It @ GSU" button. That button will point you to the article if it's held in another database, or will help you set up an Interlibrary Loan for the article. (Yes, you can place requests for articles via Interlibrary Loan during the coronavirus crisis -- article requests are handled electronically).
If you check the "Full Text" box in a database, you're actually saying that you only want articles which that particular database has available in "full text." You're shutting off that "Find It @ GSU" option.
Most databases will assign subject terms (also called descriptors) to individual articles. These will show up as links in an article's database record. Clicking on a subject term link will take you to other articles that also have been assigned that subject term
Some databases will include a Thesaurus link that will help you identify relevant subject terms for your topic. Start by clicking on Thesaurus and then typing in a keyword -- the Thesaurus will then tell you the subject term that database uses for that term, and likely suggest other related terms as well.
Try using these subject terms (also listed on the Finding Books tab) if they're relevant:
Different databases use different subject terms -- be flexible and pay attention to the subject terms that show up in a useful article's record!
to search names as a phrase | ex: "walter cronkite"
as a wild card | ex: wom*n
AND between words to NARROW results | ex: cat AND dog
OR between words to EXPAND results | ex: cat OR kitten