You will usually want to use a number of articles as sources for your information, depending on your professor’s requirements and the length of your assignment. Coulter Library has general, all-purpose databases for multiple subjects as well as subject-specific databases.

Do not assume you already know what you want to find! Keep an open mind as you read your search results; you will see new ideas and viewpoints which may change how you think about your topic as well as improve your assignment.

To find articles:

  • Go to and choose “Articles” from the menu at the left side. Use the pulldown menu to choose your topic; this will bring up the databases that are best for your topic. (If you are searching for a particular journal title, choose the “Journals” link at the left side (just under “Articles”) to find out if it is available through the library.)
  • If you need scholarly or peer-reviewed articles, review the database’s search limits and select a the appropriate limit to restrict your search to only those types of articles. 
  • Enter your keywords and search. Read the search results carefully; you may see other keywords that you can use, or ways to further refine your topic.
  • Do not choose your articles by the article title alone. Click on each title to read the short summary of the article before accepting or rejecting it.
  • Once you have an article that you want to use on your screen, look for an email link to email it to yourself. That way, you will always have a copy of it.