Searching Within Databases

The UW-Madison Libraries subscribe to hundreds of databases. Although databases may present different interfaces, they often share common features and functionality.

Starting a Search

  • When searching an article database, you will get the best results by:
    • Combining concepts with “AND” in the search bar.
    • Using the database search limits. Most article databases have advanced search features that help specify your search results. You can often limit by:
      • Source Type
      • Publication Date
      • Subject
      • Language
      • Geography
      • And more…

Selecting an Article

  • Selecting an article title in a search results list will take you to the article record. The article record provides useful article information and tools such as:
    • Subject terms, which are useful for finding articles on similar topics.
    • Abstracts, which summarizes the article.
    • Citation tools, which produce formatted citations in multiple styles.
    • Export tools, which send article information to a citation manager.

Reading an Article

  • If you want to read an article, you will need to look for a link or button that says “Full Text,” “HTML Full Text,” “PDF Full Text” or something similar. These links will take you directly to the article.
  • If there is not a link to the full text, you will want to look for a red “Find It” button. Selecting this button searches all of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Libraries databases for availability elsewhere.
    • If the full text is available online, you will see the option to get full text.
    • If it is not available online, click on the “Look for Print and Other Formats in the Library Catalog” under “Additional Options” to see if the Libraries have a print copy.
    • OR you can “Request a Copy” of the article through Interlibrary Loan.