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Introduction to Academic Research

Everything you need to know to begin a research project


OneSearch (the search box located on Sherrod Library's homepage and at the top of this page) serves as the library's catalog for books and streaming media. It will also search multiple databases in a single search. Consequently, it's a great place to begin your search. Just remember to sign in so you can see the full-text of articles and request books or articles through interlibrary loan.


Use our databases to find scholarly journal articles, popular articles, newspapers, eBooks, and more.

You can access our databases on campus or from any internet-connected computer with the same user name and password that you use for Goldlink or Desire2Learn.

These databases are a great place to start researching most topics: 

Database Search Tips

  • Go with simple and obvious for your first search
  • Play with terms as necessary
  • Use "or" to connect synonymous terms (e. g. teenagers or adolescents)
  • Use "and" to make the search more specific (Patriot Act and terrorism)
  • If the results are too high, limit a search by gender, age, ethnic/racial population or geographical region
  • Look at a list of descriptors (subject headings) to find more possible search terms
  • Use limit to find full-text articles

Whenever you need help finding materials or coming up with a search strategy, ask a librarian for help. Call the Ask-Us Desk at 439-4307 or use the toll-free number (1-866-542-3878). 

You can also contact us by texting, emailing, chatting, or tweeting. Just use the Ask Us section of the library's homepage.