This unit is designed to:• Introduce you to the diverse array of research databases available at Palomar College Library.• Understand how the databases are organized• Choose a database appropriate for your personal research needs• Help you get acquainted with three of the general use databasesReady, set, go!
Whether you are doing research for a classassignment or personal knowledge, articles frommagazines, journals and newspapers can bevaluable sources of information. To find thesearticles in the Palomar College Library, start at thelibrary’s home page: http://www.palomar.edu/libraryClick on either of these links: Databases/Articlesor Articles . From off campus, you can log onto allthe databases listed in this guide using yourstudent ID number and eServices password.
Either link takes you to the Online Research Databases.They are arranged by type of resource (General,Reference, News) and by area of study (Science &Technology, Behavioural Science, etc).Each one has a link to see its description and open thedatabases.
When you start your research – think first!• Where will you find information on your topic?• Will there be definitions and background information in reference sources like encyclopedias and dictionaries?• Have newspapers published information on this topic?• Will it come from a specialized area of study like the behavioral sciences - psychology or sociology, for instance? From the field of science? Somewhere else?• Is this a topic that’s more general in nature?
Opposing Viewpoints is a good resource for controversialissues. It contains pro and con essays on a variety of “hottopics” like gun control, abortion, same-sex marriage andmany others.
There are two ways to search OpposingViewpoints. The first is a “keyword search.” Asshown below, just type your topic into the searchbox and then click on Search.
The results will be categorized into groups:•Viewpoints•News•Academic Journals•Reference•Magazines•WebsitesTo expand a section, click on View All. To reada particular article, click on the title underlinedin blue.
If you haven’t chosen a topic yet, browse for ideasthrough topics that have been widely covered. Todo this, click on Browse Issues.From the drop-down menu,choose a general categoryor View All.The topics that displaywill range alphabeticallyfrom Abortion to ZeroTolerance Policies.
Next, let’s look at CQ ResearcherEvery week, CQ Researcher publishes a lengthy report on a topic of contemporary interest.
Type your topic into the “quick search” box, then GO.
Your “search results” will include any reportsspecifically about your topic.Click on the blue report title to read its contents.
Reports are organized into segments:• Introduction• Overview• Background• Etc.• Etc.• Etc.Read the entirereport, or godirectly to asegment.
Next (and last in this lesson):Academic Search Premier Academic Search Premier is a good place to start no matter what your subject is. It is an EBSCO database. The Palomar College Library subscribes to many EBSCO databases. They all work the same.
Like Opposing Viewpoints and CQ Researcher, start bytyping your topic into the box. You may also wish to focusyour search by selecting options from the list under “Limityour results.”
• Check the Full Text box to insure that each of your search results will be linked to the whole article (not just some basic information about the article).• Check the Scholarly Journal box if your professor requires you to use “scholarly sources.”• Type the name of a publication to find only articles published that particular one.• Limit by date if you are required to find material within a certain time range.
The results are a list of articles published on your topic.Click the blue title of the article for a more detailed record.
Read the Abstract for a quick summary of the article. Clickthe Full Text link to read the whole article.
As you begin to explore these three databases andothers, you will discover features that allow you to:• Refine and focus your search• Organize your results• Print and email your results• Create citations for the sources you decide to use.The more you use the databases, themore skillful you’ll become!
RECAPUse the online research databases to find articles in:•Magazines•Newspapers•Academic (scholarly) journalsPractice using these general-use databases:•Opposing Viewpoints•CQ Researcher•Academic Search PremierNOW YOU DO IT! Please proceed to Test#2.