|Tarleton State University Libraries
Databases are online indexes that can be searched
to locate article citations (publication information), article
abstracts, and full text articles. Other types of documents
(e.g. book reviews, government documents, reports, research
studies, etc.) are also available through databases.
databases are general and cover many subjects (for example, Academic
Search Premier), while others are subject-specific (for example, Business
and Company Research Center). Tarleton libraries' Guide
to Online Databases page offers brief descriptions of
the available databases to help researchers determine which databases
are best suited to their research topics.
TO USE DATABASES
Databases are most useful for finding recently published articles
or article citations. Due to their electronic format, databases can
be updated more rapidly than print materials. Therefore, researchers
often prefer using databases rather than print periodical indexes
and periodical abstracts.
Only a few databases, however, contain information prior to the mid-1980s
or early 1990s. For example, JSTOR offers articles from as early as
the 1600s, and PsycINFO offers articles and citations beginning in
Also, many databases do not offer online full text articles from the
most recent issues of some periodicals due to restrictions (called
embargoes) placed by the publishers. In addition, articles may be
missing due to copyright decisions, vendor error, or inclusion policies.
Still, the databases will offer article citations, which can be used
to locate the full articles, as explained later in this unit.
If you're looking for material from time periods that are not covered
by the libraries' databases, do not give up. The libraries' periodical
indexes and periodical abstracts should provide adequate coverage
for most time periods and subjects.
TO USE DATABASES
The libraries' databases can be accessed from the Online
Databases page, which alphabetically lists the databases
and provides links to them.
Most databases let researchers use keyword, subject, title, and author
searches. Also, some databases offer more sophisticated searching
capabilities such as letting users restrict results to scholarly journals
and limit searches by date, type, and language. These search limits
are discussed in Unit 4 "Searching Effectively" along with
information about other ways to refine searches. Detailed information
about using databases and understanding search results is offered
in Unit 7 "Using Databases," as well as in the databases'
online tutorials and help files.
Note that if Tarleton is not your Internet Service Provider, accessing
the libraries' databases requires the EZProxy or VPN connection, along
with your Tarleton network username and password, as explained in
Unit 2 "Accessing Resources."
Library Orientation Site Index