CASA/Humanities Inclusivity Program (Summer 2023)

Using "Advanced Search" in Databases

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:

  • Limit by year of publication (helpful if you need the most current scholarship/literature)
  • Limit to scholarly/peer-reviewed articles (this is often just a box you can check)
  • Limit by language (if you read a particular language or languages, you can select those; you can also limit your search to just items in English)

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. (If you have a citation for an article, you can also place an Interlibrary Loan request by starting here and following the prompts).

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.

Search Hints

   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

What About PubMed?

The database PubMed works a little differently from the databases mentioned in Jill's session. 

See our PubMed research guide for information about how to search in PubMed. Contact information for our two health-sciences librarians is also available on that guide. 

These other databases are also useful for finding health-related sources:

Interdisciplinary Article Databases available @ GSU

These are general scholarly databases that cover a wide range of disciplines.

Don't forget to check related research guides to find additional databases for your topic.
To see all of our databases, use our A-Z list.

Subject Article Databases Available @ GSU

These databases focus on specific disciplines.

You can also use the "Databases by Subject" dropdown menu on the library's homepage tab to identify relevant databases by subject or discipline.

Subject-specific research guides can also help you find more databases for your topic.