The Databases module
teaches you how to search for journal,
magazine, and newspaper ARTICLES
in numerous databases and in different subject areas.
Why use a database?
You may already know that the catalog helps you locate the books, videos,
newspapers, magazines, and journals we have in the library. What the
catalog DOES NOT do, though, is tell you what articles are in each of
the newspapers, magazines, and journals. To find that information, you
need to search a database.
What is a database?
speaking, a database is a collection of information on a subject or
subjects that is organized in a useful manner and is often used to locate
and retrieve bits of information. Most of the time we think of databases
as being electronic collections of information, but non-computer-based
collections, such as telephone books or cards organized and stored in
file cabinets, are also databases. In this tutorial, though, we will
concentrate on electronic databases and learn how to retrieve full-text
articles. (Slightly reproduced from: Webster's New World Dictionary
of Computer Terms, 8th ed., Bryan Pfaffenberger. Foster City, CA:
IDG Books Worldwide, Inc., 2000. p. 142)
What does "full-text
article is, for our purposes, an article whose entire text is available
from an electronic database. Simply put, a full-text article from the
July 2002 issue of Scientific American magazine is the exact
article word-for-word that appeared in the actual print publication.
The layout may not be the same, but the content is.
What database should
Before you even begin your search, you need to determine the best database
to use. The library subscribes to hundreds of databases in numerous
subject areas such as psychology, philosophy, nursing, or education.
Databases are grouped by subject on the Electronic
Collection page, or you can view one of the many LibGuides with suggested databases. Once you've decided
on the database you'd like to search, you can begin entering your terms
or key terms.
If you plan
to do your research from outside the campus, you will need to access
the databases through EZ-Proxy. Because most of the electronic databases
are restricted to FAU students, faculty, and staff, this server prevents
unauthorized users from accessing databases that are paid for by the
FAU Libraries. To use EZ-Proxy, you need to have a valid and activated
Owl Card which also serves as your FAU Library Card. To have your card
activated, take it to the Circulation Desk on the first floor of the
S.E. Wimberly Library. Visit the
Off Campus Connect/ EZproxy home page to learn more.