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Help Searching Ebsco Databases: Tips

Get help with advanced search techniques in Ebsco databases.

Search Multiple Databases

From the homepage, enter your keywords in the Academic Search Premier search bar and click Search.


In the new window, you'll see your search results-- 

This is a good number of results, but you're only searching Academic Search Premier, which covers a lot of different subjects and doesn't give you the specific results you might find in a more subject-specific database. To improve your search results, you could search another EBSCOhost database at the same time by click Choose Databases above the search bar.


In the new window, you'll see all the databases EBSCOhost provides to you as a COCC student (try hovering your mouse over the comment bubble next to the name of the database if you are unsure if the database is relevant to your topic).


Once you've found the databases relevant to your topic, click the box next to the name of the databases you want to include in your search.

Chances are good you don't have a topic that relates to all of these databases (it's hard to think of a topic where it would be appropriate to search Computer Source and European Views of the Americas at the same time!) so it's best to click individual databases rather than searching all EBSCOhost databases at once. 

Click OK to return to the databases and then click Search to re-search in the databases you selected.

You'll now see your new results--and we've almost doubled the number we found in our original search! 

Specialty Searching

The default option in the search bar is to look for your words as keywords.

But sometimes that gives you too many results or irrelevant results, so it can be helpful to change that default using the dropdown menu next to the search button.

Now you can search for your words as the author of articles, or to see if your search terms appear in the title of articles. You can also search for your keywords in a specific publication using the option SO Journal Name. 

Using Filters



Sometimes you get too many results, or the results you do get aren't relevant to your search. Using filters allow you to narrow your results to those that are specific to your needs!

From the results page on the left side of the screen in EBSCOhost databses, you'll see a lot of filtering options that can make it easier to find what you need.

Limiting options include only seeing peer-reviewed journals, filtering out source types that don't matter to you (like book reviews or trade publications), seeing results in a certain date range, or eliminating results in languages you don't speak.

Ebsco Toolbar

All library databases have toolbars that give you some helpful options when you're researching. In EBSCOhost the toolbar is available after you click on the article title from the result list. 

With these options, you can organize your research so you don't lose track of articles important to your topic. 

With the Google Drive or Add to folder option, you would need to have accounts with either Google or EBSCOhostThese accounts are independent of the Barber Library, but can help you easily save search results.

The Cite option gives you an automatically-generated citation in a variety of citation styles. Be aware, these citations are not error-proof. Always double check automatically generated citations and references for correct formatting (capitalization, punctuation, placement of elements, etc.). For help, check out this guide on citing sources.



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This guide by COCC Barber Library is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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