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Journals and Databases: Get to Know Your Databases

Search Terms

Thesauri are helpful when thinking about what search terms you want to use. Some databases have links to a thesaurus on the search page. If you do not mind ads on the page, is a fast, free tool to find synonyms and antonyms.

Another useful source for developing search terms is the Library of Congress. The LC Linked Data Service has a search box that allows you to search for subject heading, naming authorities, and classifications associated with your desired search term and offers broadened or specific terminologies that you can use in your search.

Boolean Logic

AND - Search limiter. Results contain all search terms.

OR - Search expander. Results contain at least one of the search terms.

NOT - Search excluder. Results do not contain the specified term.

(Parentheses) - Use perntheses to nest terms within a search string.

"Quotations" - Use quotation marks to search for exact phrases.


N - Append a number to the N to search for a term within the stated number of words of one another, regardless of order entered.

W -  Append a number to the W to search for a term within the stated number of words of one another in the order entered.

Subscribed Databases - A Quick Look

ProQuest (from the vendor)

ProQuest Engineering Collection:

The collection contains engineering related full-text articles, granular access to millions of figures and tables within articles, and the entire range of bibliographic records from the Engineering Research Database. Engineering Research Database contains a comprehensive index to world literature on technological and engineering innovations going back to 1966.

EBSCO (from the vendor)

Business Source Complete:

Regarded as the world's definitive scholarly business database, providing the leading collection of bibliographic and full text content. As part of the comprehensive coverage offered by this database, indexing and abstracts for the most important scholarly business journals back as far as 1886 are included. In addition, searchable cited references are provided for more than 1,300 journals.

Environment Complete:

Contains more than 2.4 million records from more than 2,200 domestic and international titles going back to 1888 (including over 1,350 active core titles) as well as more than 190 monographs. The database also contains full text for more than 920 journals.

Regional Business News:

This database provides comprehensive full text coverage for regional business publications. It incorporates coverage of more than 80 regional business publications covering all metropolitan and rural areas within the United States.

JSTOR (from the vendor)

JSTOR is a shared digital library created in 1995 to help university and college libraries to free space on their shelves, save costs, and provide greater levels of access to more content than ever before. JSTOR currently includes more than 2,000 academic journals, dating back to the first volume ever published, along with thousands of monographs and other materials relevant for education. the content on JSTOR comes from a broad range of disciplines, predominantly in the humanities, social sciences, and field sciences.

HECSA Library has four JSTOR databases available for our patrons: Collection Arts & Sciences I, Collection Arts & Sciences II, Collection Arts & Sciences VII, and Collection Biological Sciences.

Additionally, HECSA customers have access to BioScience, The Journal of Geology, The Library Quarterly: Information, Community, Policy, and Ornithological Monographs.

Add HECSA Library to your Google Scholar search!

When you perform a Google Scholar search, it will include links to results we have in HECSA Library's collections. If you need it and we do not have it, please email, call or stop by with the citation and we will pursue it for you.

Wildcards & Truncation

? - Replaces a single unknown character.

# - Used to allow extra character within the original spelling of a term.

* - Replaces prefixes and suffixes to root words to allow form variations of the term.
 The asterisk * can also be used to replace a word or words between search terms in a string.

More Resources

This list covers the "Big 3". See the A to Z Resource List for a comprehensive listing of HECSA resources.

Check out the Journals and Magazines @ Your Desk Guide to request delivery of journal titles either in hardcopy or electronic formats.