- Databases contain electronic versions of magazines, newspapers, academic journals, and encyclopedias. We call the terms you search these databases with keywords.
- You will search databases exactly like you search Google. However, there are a few differences:
- You search databases with topics (ideas, concepts) and nouns (person, place, thing).
- Shorten keywords to 1-4 words, not phrases or sentences like with Google.
- Writers might have written on your topic but not used your exact search terms. Think of synonyms or variations of a word for your terms and search with those too.
This video is a good intro to library research:
Encyclopedias and Dictionaries - Broad Topics; People; Word Definitions
Selected dictionaries, encyclopedias, and reference books in many subjects.
Articles from dictionaries, general and subject encyclopedias, handbooks, atlases, and more.
Articles - Newspapers, Magazines, Academic Journals - Specific Topics
Academic Search Premier (EbscoHost)
Articles in all subjects from scholarly journals, magazines, and newspapers. An all-purpose database and often a good place to start.
Academic OneFile (Gale)
Articles in all subjects from scholarly journals, magazines, and newspapers. An all-purpose database.
Newspapers Only - Localized People and Events
ProQuest Major U.S. Newspapers
Academic Journals Only - In-Depth Analysis by Experts
Scholarly articles, ebooks, and primary sources in the social sciences, humanities, earth and biological sciences, and more. Includes image results from Artstor.
Journal articles and books on literature, history, visual and performing arts, cultural studies, education, political science, gender studies, and more.
Reporting on Current Events
Reports on controversial issues of national importance (health care, public safety, education, environment, etc.). Each report is on a single topic. Helpful as a topic overview.
Book Search searches the listing of books and ebooks available at the Normandale Library.
Combined Search helps find articles, books, and videos from the library collection.
Films On Demand
A streaming video service with documentaries, newsreels, and other educational films on many topics.
Kanopy Streaming Videos
A streaming video service with documentary, educational, and feature films.
Notes: PERSONAL ACCOUNT REQUIRED to watch videos. To create an account on Kanopy, use the orange Visit the Normandale Collection button. If you already have a Kanopy account, sign in using the Login link.
The Library pays a per-view fee for Kanopy. To keep costs down, only use Kanopy for educational purposes.
- Research is a process. You probably won’t find everything you need on the first try. You may have to try several of these databases to find all the information you need.
- If you can’t find much on your topic, try different keywords. Using synonyms or broader related terms can help you find more articles. As you research, be on the lookout for new keywords to use.
Ask a Librarian
Access Databases from Off Campus
In order to access databases and other Library resources from off campus, login with your StarID and password when prompted. Off-campus access to library databases is only available to current Normandale students, staff, and faculty.