To successfully search a database, keep in mind that you won't be able to use entire sentences to search, like you could with Google. You'll need to have your search terms already picked out.
You can also use search connectors by putting different search terms in the different boxes of the database's advanced search, and using the drop-down menus in-between to choose your search connector. This works with three different connectors:
Another helpful tip is to consider truncation. Truncation is the act of ending a search term at the point in the word where it could branch off into different endings. When you do this and place an asterisk () at the end, that tells the search to come up with results that have multiple endings for one root word. Truncation is a good way to broaden results if you're having trouble finding sources, but you want to use this with caution.
Finally, if you're searching for a phrase with more than one word in it that could be mistaken for several search terms, it helps to put it in quotation marks. This is helpful for things like names, such as "Planned Parenthood," or phrases, such as "climate change."
Because the library pays for access to article databases, you will need to go through the library website to access them. If you are connecting to the databases from off-campus, you will also need to log in.
When prompted, enter your last name, barcode number, and PIN into the login screen. Your barcode number is the number at the bottom of your library barcode, probably on the back of your University ID:
If you don't have a library barcode, you can visit the Ask a Librarian page to contact the Reference desk.
Everyone's PIN number is 9999 at the beginning, so unless you reset it at some point, it will still be the same PIN as everyone else. If you reset it and can't remember it, the Reference desk can help with that too.
For more detailed instructions on how to access databases from off-campus, see the file below: