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Summer Research: Databases

Why Use Databases?

If you are looking for a quick way to find a plethora of potential sources for a paper or project, databases are the place to search.  On the library homepage, click on the Databases tab at the top.  The databases are listed alphabetically here, but are also listed by subject in the Research Guides.

The research library at the Rijksmuseum, photo courtesy of Jan Sluijer

What if I Still Can't Find Enough Articles?

To find more articles in the databases, try varying your search terms.  Try alternate spellings and synonyms, pay attention to terms field experts use in their articles, and try using related terms and concepts in your searches. You can also meet with a librarian at the reference desk for help refining your searches and locating additional source material.

Interlibrary Loan

If the Gustavus library doesn’t have a particular book or article you’re looking for, you can request it from another library through interlibrary loan. An easy way to submit an ILL request is by clicking the yellow "Find It" button that appears under the item you've searched for. The button will take you to a new page, then click the link under "Borrow from Other Libraries" and log in with your Gustavus account. After assuring that the information in the request from is correct, click "submit request." Alternatively, you can follow the steps outlined below:

  1. On the left side of the library homepage, click the link “My Library Account” and login using your Gustavus account.  
  2. Submit a request for a book or article using the “Create ILL Request” links on the right side of the page.  
  3. Provide as much information as you can in your request to expedite the process, and be sure to request your material well ahead of your project due date.  

Requests are generally fulfilled within a few days to a week, depending on the availability of the material and the library it is borrowed from.  For more information, FAQs, and a video tutorial, see the ILL page on the library website.

General Searching

For general searches or for beginning your research, here are some good databases to start with.

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