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Course & Subject Guides

Political Science - Oakland Campus: General Databases

This guide is to help political science students and faculty find resources for their work.

What is a Database?

A 'database' is an online resource that indexes journals, journal articles, conference proceedings, book chapters, primary sources, and other content. These databases make it easy for users to search across multiple content types and content providers without having to search each provider individually. Some databases offer access to a broad variety of content, and are often good starting points for research. Other databases are subject specific and are useful for finding resources related to a specific field of research.

All ULS databases offer multiple options for searching and refining search results, and many of the databases offer access to full-text articles.

Formulating Your Search Terms

With your research topic in hand you must formulate a search strategy. The first step in this process is to develop a set of search terms you will initially use to search for resources. You can draw an initial set of search terms from your thesis topic (e.g. nanotechnology AND electronics), but it may also be helpful to try some more specific search terms (e.g. molecular electronics, carbon nanotubes), and possibly some broader terms (e.g. nanotechnology).

Refining Your Search

It is highly unlikely that your first search will result in a perfect result set. Refining your search can return more relevant results, providing you with higher quality resources for your research. Use the tips below to refine your searches:

General Databases

Below are some broad political science databases to start.