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How Do I Find Articles?

Using Indexes and Abstracting Services

The libraries subscribe to a variety of indexing and abstracting services, including database which offer full text content such as Lexis-Nexis Academic (entirely full text) and Academic Search Premier (considerable full text content).   These types of databases can be used to find articles in scholarly journals, magazines and newspapers. They can be found using the libraries' website and most are now published in electronic format, though the Libraries print index collection still contain unique resources not duplicated in electronic format. 

Indexes and Abstracts can be found in the Find Articles section of the Libraries' website.  There is also a list of database arranged by date of coverage and by title. You can also find resources on how to figure out where the articles within a specific journal are indexedReference librarians can also provide expert assistance in the selection and use of these resources.

Most of the indexes will identify articles; however, some include other types of published material, including books, chapters in books and dissertations.   Many indexes include links to the full text of articles, but searches often produce only information (citations) that will lead to the actual articles as they were published in print publications.  Below is a sample of a citation with abstract from an abstracting service.  Abstracting services provide a summary or the article as well as a citation.

AUTHOR: Lauria, Joe.
TITLE: Picasso the ceramist.
SOURCE: Art News v. 98 no4 (Apr. '99) p. 64 col il.

[In this index, "Source"=the periodical where the article was published. Other information included is the volume number, issue number, date and page(s) for this article.]

ABSTRACTS: "Picasso: Painter and Sculptor in Clay," at the
Metropolitan Museum of Art through June 6, is the first
large-scale examination of Picasso's work ...

Finding the print version of journals, periodicals, magazines or newspapers in the Libraries

Once a citation/abstract has been found the next step is to either locate the journal, magazine or newspaper that printed the article. The Libraries subscribe to more than 3,000 print and electronic journals, magazines and newspapers.  Information about finding a journal in our collection can found on the Finding Library Journals ,Periodicals, Magazines and Newspapers page. For information about obtaining them from other libraries if the Colgate Libraries do not own them, consult the Interlibrary Loan page.

Some search tips for some of the indexing families

  Connectors Proximity Truncation Tag/Mark for Printing
FirstSearch and, or, not w#, i.e. w1, w2, etc. + (limited to plurals) clickable boxes
EbscoHost and, or, and not Within Operator (W) - In the following example, W8 finds the words if they are within eight words of one another and in the order in which you entered them.

Near Operator (N) - N5 finds the words if they are within five words of one another regardless of the order in which they appear.

*multiple letter
? single letter
clickable boxes
Cambridge Scientific and, or, not Within N
e.g Bill within 3 Gates

 NEAR (n)

 BEFORE Finds words in a relative order, e.g., social before security. Note: adjacency is not implied.

AFTER Finds words that contain words in the relative order specified with the after expression, e.g., scope after science. Note: adjacency is not implied.


? single character
clickable boxes
Lexis-Nexis Academic and, or, not w/#
e.g. Osama w/2 Laden
 ! multiple
* single
citations only/no full text

 You may also find additional information in the "help" features which appear in the online indexes. 

Do not hesitate to consult with a Reference Librarian about search strategies and techniques, deciphering citations, and location information

Indexes are varied and complex. Even well informed researchers can often be puzzled by citation information. Pathways to online text can be convoluted and library collection locations and layout can be challenging.  A consultation with a Reference Librarian can often save considerable time.  Drop by the Reference Desk in Case Library (hours), see a librarian in Cooley Science Library (hours), or use the Ask a Librarian link in the banner at the top of this page.

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Locating Sources at the Colgate University Libraries and Interlibrary Loan

Colgate's Library Catalog (online catalog) records supply a call number for material located in Case and Cooley libraries.  To pinpoint call number locations, please refer to the floorplans posted in Case and Cooley.

Colgate University's film and video collection is located in Case Library.  For Video, DVD and film searching, see our help page.

Articles identified through indexes may be in our print or microform collections, or may need to be requested by interlibrary loan.  Please search online catalog in Journal Finder mode to discover whether the source (i.e. the journal, magazine or newspaper) of your article is held at Colgate, and whether we have the needed issue.

Sources not held by the Colgate libraries or the university video, DVD and film collection may be available through interlibrary loan.  Search for the material in the following catalogs, in this order:

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Page Created Charlotte Droll & Maintained by: Peter Rogers | Last Updated: April 23, 2014 | © 2009

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