Here is what we hope to cover today. We will talk for a few minutes about what databases actually are and why we should use them. We will take a look at the library’s database page which lists all of the databases to which the library is linked. This is where we will show you the challenges and benefits of using the Magazine and Newspaper index on the library’s webpage. Next will be the major part of our workshop: Searching…how to format a search in the major databases…how to narrow a search to just what you need to find. Most of us, even the most experienced database searchers conduct most of our searches on the Basic Search page. With a client standing next to you that is often the quickest and most effective way to search. We will spend most of our Search time on the Basic screen. Advanced searching provides an incredible number of options for building and focusing a search. The best advanced searches take time to construct. We will show you as much as possible at this level, but the best way for you to learn is to look at these screens for yourselves and practice using them when you have a few minutes to spare. Once this has been exhausted we will show you a few options to deal with the results of your searches. Here we will throw in a few tips on using the databases to create a bibliography with the results. And, finally, we will talk for a few minutes to show you the options you have to find help for your searching right on the database screen.
Welcome to today’s workshop… Introduction of speakers The purpose of this workshop is to show you the basics. We will talk a little bit about what a database is; why we should use it; when to use it and finally how to use it. That last one is a little tricky. There are many ways to use the databases. Today I have a lot to show you. Some of it is probably more than you will ever actually use. For each technique or method that I show you, there are at least 2 or 3 more ways to reach a similar result. We cannot show them all. The hope is that you will be aware of the possibilities. Hopefully, by the end of our workshop, some of your questions will be answered and you will be able to construct simple searches to help your patrons with their database questions. More than that, when you have had the time to practice a bit, you will be able to develop your own best search techniques and apply them to all of the databases, no matter what the database structure. So…. What is a database? Funk and Wagnalls defines it as “ a collection of information, or data, organized for storage in a computer”. Other dictionaries interpret the word in much the same way, perhaps with a few more details and explanations. In the case of our databases, each database publisher, Gale, Ebsco, Proquest, etc., has collected the information, verified it, organized it, and set parameters for its use. We, the library, subscribes and are granted access to the contents through a licensing agreement. We will look at this again in a few minutes. Today we will spend some time looking at the library’s database collection, especially the major database publishers. We will look at searching, both basic and advanced, and show you a little bit about the results of our searches. Finally, if at all possible, there will be time for questions.
The library purchases information electronically in the form of subscription databases just as we purchase print material. There are many benefits of having information available electronically. Information available electronically is: (click) Accessible anytime – The library doesn’t have to be open to access information. Our databases can be accessed 24/7. (click) Accessible anywhere – Electronic Information can be accessed anywhere you have an Internet connection. From the library, from school, from the comfort of your home etc… (However, please note that there are a few speciality databases – such as Ancestry Library – that are only accessible inside the library due to subscription limitations.) (click) Always “checked in” - Unlike books in the library that can be checked out, electronic information is always available. There are also a few databases which provide access to a limited number of users at one time, but, for the most part, you always have the tools to help that student with the project due tomorrow who can’t find any material in your branch. (Note that pictures, classifieds, and advertisements may not always be available in some databases.) (click) All branches, big or small, have equal access - Because print encyclopedias can be quite expensive OPL wasn’t always able to purchase copies for all 33 branches. Smaller branches sometimes had to refer patrons to other locations. With the electronic resources all branches have equal access to resources. (click) Peer reviewed & authoritative - Information in our electronic databases is pulled together from a variety of authoritative sources so that it can be relied uoon to be accurate as well as organized. Most of the entries come from previously or simultaneously published print sources such as newspapers, magazines, journals and reference books.
The first example, is the May 3 rd 2007 (click) newspaper article Liberals OK’d Afghan detainee deal which can be found in the paper copy of The Ottawa Citizen or electronically in our databases. ****Hold up the paper copy of The Ottawa Citizen **** As you can see, the information and source are the same for the print and the electronic copy. Same information; different format.
Our second example, is information found in the reference periodical Contemporary Literary Criticism . Contemporary Literary Criticism is a fantastic and trusted resource to help high school, college and university students find secondary sources for their English papers. Not all 33 branches have Contemporary Literary Criticism available to them in print at their library but everyone has access to this information through our electronic resources!
One book read by nearly all high school students is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Many essays can be found about this famous novel in Contemporary Literary Criticism . ****Hold up the reference periodical Contemporary Literary Criticism **** These same essays can also be found electronically in Literature Resource Center – a Gale database.
As you can see, the essays “Symbolism and Racism in To Kill a Mockingbird ”, “The Female Voice in To Kill a Mockingbird ” and “Reconstructing Atticus Finch” can be found in the print periodical Contemporary Literary Criticism and also electronically in Literature Resource Center . Can anyone see what the original source of the essays are? “ Symbolism and Racism in To Kill a Mockingbird ” can be found in the book Readings on To Kill a Mockingbird 2. “ The Female Voice in To Kill a Mockingbird” can be found in Mississippi Quarterly 3. “ Reconstructing Atticus Finch ” can be found in the Michigan Law Quarterly (click) (Only choose one to show if no one answers)
Our third example, is Dictionary of Canadian Biography . As you can see the exact same information about Louis Riel can be found in this print copy as can be found electronically. ****Hold up a copy of Dictionary of Canadian Biography **** Note that when you select Dictionary of Canadian Biography you will be linked to the Library and Archives Canada government website. Anyone can access this information. It isn’t restricted to just OPL card holders. This does not mean you are “googling” for information nor does it make the information any less credible. This online database is provided by the Canadian government and holds a wealth of biographical information about prominent Canadians who have died between 1000 and 1930. They have simply digitized the print volumes of this valuable resource for easy access.
The Opposing Viewpoints series is yet another example of information that has been reproduced electronically - giving everyone easy convenient access to information that is always checked in! ***Hold up the 3 books from the Opposing Viewpoints series – Hate Groups, Juvenile Crime & Gay Marriages****
As you have seen, information comes in different formats – print & electronic. However, the source is still the same. We will talk about what a “source” is and how to cite information a little later in the presentation.
From our main electronic database page there are an overwhelming number of databases to choose from and get familiar with. The list is long as you scroll down the page. The good news is that when you choose a database it will likely link you to 1 of the 3 major database publishers: Gale , Ebsco or Proquest . These databases will look similar because they have been created by the same company. For example, if you select Gale Virtual Reference Library , Health Reference Center Academic or General Reference Center Gold from that long list of databases on the main page you will notice they all look similar and share the same general traits. This is because these three are all produced by the same publisher: Gale . Have a look….
Gale Virtual Reference Library
Health Reference Center Academic
And General Reference Center Gold Notice the similarities between the databases produced by Gale? These are the opening search pages for these three Gale databases. They all have the name of the publisher in the top left corner, the name of the database in the band beneath. Principle Search options are a bit lower, then, taking the largest portion of the screen is the search box.
Now look at the other two publishers’ search screens Also notice the similarities between Gale and these two different database publishers: ProQuest & EBSCO Host? Each of theses publishers has more than one database in our collection. There aren’t as many different database to learn as it first appears. These databases, and all databases for that matter, share similar traits. Once you are comfortable searching one or two different information databases, your searching skills will be transferable to others! You are already familiar with many aspects of database searching because you use Horizon and our online public Catalogue. All database have the same essential elements. Common features of databases will be discussed in detail later in this presentation.
Now that we have discussed what a database really is and looked at what the major publishers have in common, let’s take a closer look at the library’s database page.
3 Arrows As you know, our electronic databases can be accessed through the “find articles and research guides” link under the Connect tab. We saw it briefly in a previous screen. We are now going to look at some of the key elements of the OPL main electronic information page. Such as: Click a) How the databases are organized on the webpage Click b) The “In library use only” symbol Click c) The List of Magazines and Newspapers There is other information on the main page about research guides, remote patron authentication, technical tips and database tutorials which, while very useful, is beyond the scope of today’s training session.
2 arrows fly in on click All of the databases are listed alphabetically on the library’s website. If you know the one you want you can simple scroll down until you reach it. This gives you a complete listing of all OPL’s 70 or more databases in all languages. From the box at the top of the screen, you can also group the databases by subject .(click) To do so simply choose a subject from the drop down box. Remember, when you are choosing a subject area that the larger databases, like CPI or Masterfile Premier are only listed as a newspaper or magazine index. They contain articles a broad range of subjects which could make them worthwhile to include in any subject search. (click) Databases can also be sorted by language – English, French or our one in Chinese.
You may have been asked about the small icon next to a few of the database titles. Databases marked with a “person reading a book” symbol can only be accessed inside the library due to subscription limitations. For example, Access Newspaper Archive , Ancestry Library , Biblio Branchee & Biography and Genealogy Master Index can be accessed at any branch inside the library, but not from home. The majority of databases, those without an icon, have no such limitations and can be accessed from anywhere there is internet access. Some of the in-library use only databases list in red the number of subscriptions we have system wide.
As noted, this Index contains only full-text magazine and newspaper articles. This means you will only retrieve results that include the article or text in its entirety. Documents that only have a brief overview, or merely a citation, will not be included in here. All documents, full-text or otherwise, can be retrieved by choosing the database from the main page. This Index can not only be used to locate electronic magazines and newspapers; it can also be used to find print copies of serials we have in the library. To this point we have talked about what databases are and why we should use them and looked at the main features of the library’s database page.
2 Clicks The Magazine and Newspaper Index is a very useful tool. You can get to it by clicking on the link at the top right of the database page. As you have seen there are over 70 databases and, if you are anything like me, you may find it difficult to remember which database you should use to find The Ottawa Citizen , or Consumer Reports , or the Harvard Law Review etc…. This is what the Index is designed to help you with. This tool allows you to quickly search for publication titles whose names contain the keywords you enter. No need to waste time guessing which database you might find the publication in. For example, if your patron wants to know whether we have the Canadian Criminal Law Review, simply enter the title of the journal ( click) in the search box and click search.
1 arrow The results show that we do carry Canadian Criminal Law Review in the “CBCA Fulltext Reference” database from 2004 until present. Clicking on the link – CBCA Fulltext Reference – will take you to the the ProQuest subscription database where you can search and retrieve information from this publication. Note* that OPL does not have this journal available in print. If we did you would see it on this list.
Search First Steps
First Steps… Databases
Overview <ul><ul><li>Databases: First Steps </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Database Searching: Basic to Expert </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Databases: Results </li></ul></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
1. The First Steps : <ul><li>What is a database? </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
What’s so great about electronic information? <ul><li>Accessible anytime </li></ul><ul><li>Accessible anywhere </li></ul><ul><li>Peer reviewed and authoritative </li></ul><ul><li>Public Library or College Resource Centre: </li></ul><ul><li>Always “checked in” </li></ul><ul><li>All locations (Branch or Campus) have equal access </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps <ul><li>Databases are not the internet. </li></ul><ul><li>They are an electronic repository and </li></ul><ul><li>tool for finding information. </li></ul>
Next slides illustrate database resources that duplicate book, newspaper and magazine collections…. 1….The Ottawa Citizen 2….Contemporary Literary Criticism 3….Dictionary of Canadian Biography 4….Opposing Viewpoints Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
The Ottawa Citizen in Canadian Newsstand Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Contemporary Literary Criticism in Literature Resource Center Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
The same essays on the book “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee, that were traditionally found in Contemporary Literary Criticism, can now be found in the Literature Resource Centre . Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
To Kill a Mockingbird essays in Literature Resource Center Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Dictionary of Canadian Biography Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
In Summary… <ul><li>Same information source </li></ul><ul><li>Different format </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Publishers of databases …. Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Major Database Publishers: <ul><li>Thomson Gale </li></ul><ul><li>ProQuest </li></ul><ul><li>EBSCO Host </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Gale databases: common elements <ul><li>Publisher identification </li></ul><ul><li>Database identification </li></ul><ul><li>Search box </li></ul><ul><li>Search options </li></ul><ul><li>Other tools </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Gale Virtual Reference Library Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Health Reference Center Academic Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
General Reference Center Gold Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
…… and now compare the others: ProQuest & EBSCO Host Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Where do you find the databases? Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Find Articles and Research Guides: Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Selecting a Database: <ul><li>Databases are listed alphabetically, or grouped together by subject, </li></ul><ul><li>They can be limited by language. </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
‘ In-Library Use Only’ Databases <ul><li>Databases marked with the icon: </li></ul><ul><li>are accessible only in the library </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
“ Full-Text Only” <ul><li>This list is a tool to determine which database to search, but... </li></ul><ul><li>It is index to full-text magazines and newspapers only. </li></ul><ul><li>It doesn’t contain titles </li></ul><ul><li>from which articles are </li></ul><ul><li>only cited or abstracted. </li></ul>Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps
Searching the List of Magazines and Newspapers Beyond Wikipedia: Databases-First Steps Canadian Musician