Have you found articles that sound like they address your research question, but you are having a difficult time understanding the article itself? That happens to everyone! Take a few minutes to learn some tactics for reading academic resources, and then be persistent and tackle some of that challenging reading. That's how you learn and grow from the experience.
Would you like to know more about what has happened right here at the University of Iowa through the years? Dating back to 1868 the Daily Iowan Newspaper Collection provides access to digitized versions of The Daily Iowan and its predecessors: the University Reporter (1868-81), the Vidette (1879-81), the Vidette-Reporter (1881-1901) and the University Mirror (1881). The newspaper editions are full text searchable.
This resource is one of many available through the Iowa Digital Library.
A selection of just some of the many databases available for finding articles is listed below. Other indexes and databases can be found through the Find Resources section of the Library's website.
These databases help you locate relevant articles in scholarly journals, magazines and newspapers. In many cases, the full text of the article is available right in the database. When that is not the case, always click on the gold UILink button to see if we subscribe to the periodical in print or online. Chances are good that we do.
Here are some basic searching tips to use when searching a library database. Ask a librarian for more help if you are not finding the type of information you need about your topic.
1. Keywords, Broader terms, Narrower terms
Use a variety of keywords to describe your topic. If you begin your research by using reference materials such as encyclopedias, you will often run across vocabulary to describe your topic that you may not have thought of on your own. Use this worksheet to help you brainstorm: http://bit.ly/research-topic-worksheet
Library databases are some of the most powerful tools you have available for finding information. We have hundreds of databases to choose from, but maybe we should start by trying to visualize what a library database is.
For best viewing, click 'Start Prezi' and then expand the presentation by clicking the diagonal arrows icon in the lower-right corner. Click escape when you are ready to leave full-screen mode.
As a student at the University of Iowa, you have access to an incredible wealth of information resources available to you through your library. We subscribe to databases that will help you find the magazine, journal, and newspaper articles you need for your academic research. To get started, watch this short tutorial about how information goes from an idea to having a home in a library.
Here are the basic things to look for when trying to determine if you're looking at a scholarly or a popular publication:
If, after examining a publication for these features, you still can't tell if it's scholarly/peer-reviewed, search UlrichsWeb for the publication title.