Where to begin?

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Where to begin?

The Library has been adding a number of journal databases and sometimes it's hard to decide where to start. You can go to the Library's Databases page, and scroll down to the descriptions of each database to see what may contain articles on the subjects you need. Or, you can jump to the Databases by Subject page, where librarians have listed the most useful databases for each course department, as well as the best databases for general topics.

If you're off-campus or in the dorms, you will be accessing the databases through our proxy server. Click here if you have any problems.

Three databases that do not require the proxy server are Ingenta, PubMed and ERIC Educational Resources. ERIC and PubMed are listed on both the Databases page and Databases by Subject pages. Ingenta has two versions, one which is subscriber-based and listed on our Databases and Databases by Subject page. Another version is a free service available to anyone. It provides a very simple index to the title keywords in scholarly journal articles from recent years. It is a single, general index. PubMed is more specialized, focusing primarily on medicine, biology, and psychology. ERIC Database searches educational journals and documents and also provides full text for documents from 1993 to the present. Ingenta and Pub Med provide only citations and abstracts for the articles. Once you have the citation, you can track down the article using the steps below.

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Okay, I've got the citation for an article. What next?

A number of the databases are full text, which means that you can get the entire text of the article from the databases. Some of the databases will only give you the citation (author, title of article, journal name, etc.) and a short abstract. Or you may have found a citation listed on the web or been given one by a professor or friend. The Library can get those articles for you through Interlibrary Loan. But, before you order, check the W.S.U. Periodicals Holdings List to see if that journal might listed in one of the Library's full text databases. If so, you'll be able to get the article yourself without waiting for Interlibrary Loan. There are other free newspapers and magazines listed on the W.S.U. Periodicals page, but you want to check the Holdings List at the top of the page. Put the title of the journal inside the box and click "Go" or click on the letter of the alphabet that the journal title starts with. Go to WSU Periodicals Holdings List page.

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The journal is not on the Library's list

If the journal you need is not listed on the W.S.U. Periodicals Holdings list, you can still get a copy of the article by requesting it through Interlibrary Loan. There are forms for requesting either books or articles on the Library's Interlibrary Loan page.

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I need more help

The librarians are willing to answer any of your questions and help you find information on your topic. You will usually find a librarian at the Reference Desk throughout the day or you can use the Ask A Librarian link at the bottom of each of the Library's webpages to get answers by email. To schedule an appointment with a librarian for research help, please contact the library liaison for your department.

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