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Anthropology 208: Research - Databases

The U.S. and Afghanistan
Professor David Edwards

Choosing a Database - Tutorial

Finding Articles

To find articles on a topic, there are several possible approaches. Click the plus sign to learn about each option.

  • Advantages
    • Subject-specific databases focus on the literature of the field, leading to more relevant and comprehensive results
    • Advanced search functions allow for more precise searching
    • Using the Find Text button leads to free full text provided through library subscriptions and interlibrary loan
  • Disadvantages
    • Need to use search syntax and functions of the database for best results; article databases do not search like Google
       

This guide provides links to article databases recommended for your course. See also the full list of article databases.

  • Advantages
    • Can search for books and articles at the same time
    • Links to free full text provided through library subscriptions and interlibrary loan
  • Disadvantages
    • Does not have as many options as an article database for refining search results
    • Does not include all the content from all of the library's article databases
       

Search the library catalog from the search box on the library home page, through the search widget embedded in research guides, or through this link.

  • ​​Advantages
    • Can help you see what topics are important in the field
    • Finds quality articles from a respected source
  • Disadvantages
    • Can be difficult to find an article on your specific topic
    • Literature found will not be as comprehensive as searching in article databases, which cover hundreds of journals
       

Hint: Most article databases have a "Journal Title" search field or limit, so you can use these search functions to narrow your more comprehensive search results to these recommended titles.

  • ​Advantages
    • Easy to search; does not require special search syntax
    • Can search across many subject disciplines at one time
    • Usually finds something on any topic
  • Disadvantages
    • Difficult​ to refine search results; not as precise as searching in article databases
    • Does not contain all of the articles found in library subscription article databases
    • Need to evaluate the articles more carefully, especially ones found through general Google searches
    • May run into a paywall to access the full text of the article

Hint: Enable the Find Text link in your Google Scholar settings or search for the article in the library catalog when you hit a paywall.

Suggested Library Databases for ANTH 208

Beyond Anthropology: Depending on your topic, you may need  scholarship produced by historians, economists, political scientists. Or you may need primary sources such as historical articles or images.  Use the E-Resources/Databases list to identify relevant databases.