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Library Search: Should I use Library Search for all my research?

Introducing the Library Search facility

Library Search - Why use anything else?

Library Search enables you to find high quality resources from a wide range of sources in a single search.

  • It is great as a starting point.
  • It covers all topics
  • If you are looking for a specific book or journal title, you can quickly find out if you have access by limiting your search to items on the Library catalogue.
  • If you are looking for a range of content on a particular topic you can find a large amount of full text material, drawn from across the databases available via the Library
  • In the vast majority of cases, the content you find will be immediately accessible in full text online

BUT - be aware that ...

  • It doesn’t cover every database, some specialist content needs to be searched separately.
  • It does not have all the advanced search options like the specialist databases. Some databases have in built thesauri and search histories for example, which can assist with complex search strategies
  • It does not provide personalisation/alert features. Some databases allow you to save and rerun searches or set up alert services for current awareness.

Databases A-Z Demonstration

Supplement Library Search with resources via the A-Z Databases List

Use the Library Search service in combination with the A–Z Databases List to access all the content that is available to you. 

The Databases A-Z list:

  • will give you access to databases that are not included in the Library Search, including specialist services such as news databases, mapping services and image databases.
  • in addition to full text resources it provides access to large research databases that index the global literature on a topic,as well as specialist databses such as image banks, commercial legal databases, company financial datasets, and much more.
  • enables more targeted and focused searching as the specialist databases tend to cover a particular subject area, e.g. Medline for medical related content, Business Source Complete for business/magement related information. This can be helpful if you are overhelmed by search results via Library Search.
  • offers you sophisticated search and alert tools so that you can get maximum research value from the database. The ‘added value’ elements are not available via Library Search.

Be aware that as the large research databases index the global literature so not all the resources you find via these large global databases will be available to you via the Library. Use the library catalogue to check on titles.

Complementary search tools

Think of the Library Search and A-Z Databases Lists as complementary services and choose whichever suits your research need at the time.  

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