Databases are online collections of resources that you can search to find information. They may cover a particular subject area or cover a range of subjects.

Most databases:

  • have a peer reviewed or scholarly material filter to ensure you get reliable, authoritative information
  • offer advanced search features that allow you to focus your search.

You can search databases to find journal articles, but they may also contain other publication types such as books, theses, newspapers, videos and images. 

Databases usually have a "Help" section with a detailed explanation of how to perform searches.

Focus your search in databases using these search tips:

1. Find the appropriate database

The Library subscribes to hundreds of databases, and there are further databases that are available free on the web. 

To select a database to search:

  • go to our Database page and use Databases by category to browse by subject. Check the Key resources first
  • check our Subject guides - our librarians have selected the most relevant databases in your subject area.

Library Search will allow you to search simultaneously across many databases. This is a good starting point if you do not know which database to search. It is also useful for cross-disciplinary research topics.

Which database should I use to find journal articles on my topic? (YouTube, 1m49s)