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Medical Imaging Effective Library Research: 3. Where should I look?

Online tutorial introducing you to the skills and techniques needed for effective library research

Develop your knowledge of the library research tools by working through the Library Search and database information.

A-Z Databases Demo

A-Z Database Demonstration



Once you have decided what sort of research materials you want to work with, you can choose the best research tool to help you find that material. There are two Library Research tools that will help you find material. These are Library search and the A-Z database list.



Library Search

Finding Resources via Library Search

A search for research methods physical activity in Library Search returns the following catalogue results. Note the type of content. There is a mixture of print and electronic texts.

This search finds matches in book and journal titles (and in brief details such as subject terms, contents page listing details). You can narrow your search to books only by using the 'resource type' filter on the left hand side of the page.

You can also use Library Search to check on the availability of print and online journal titles.

As you begin searching the research databases you may find references to particular journal articles that look interesting.  Some databases only include short bibliographic details of articles with an abstract.  If you want to read the full text you can use Library Search to discover if you have full text access.

In this example for the Research in Sports Medicine you can see that there is:

  • current access via KB+ Jisc Collections Taylor & Francis Transformative Agreement 2021-2023 Science and Technology Collection (Reading list). 

You can use the link to access the full-text.


A- Z Databases

Library Search is often a good starting point for introductory material, but if you want to research the global literature on a topic, and go beyond quick full text results, then you should follow up with a database search. 

You can tailor your search more precisely using all the sophisticated functionality available on the research databases.  

To find databases, use the A-Z list.

See the next tab for help with finding the best databases for your topic.


Each entry in the A-Z database list has an information icon. Hover over that symbol for information about the content that is available in the database and an idea of why it might be useful for research purposes. Shown below is the information for Medline (PubMed), which is a valuable medical imaging research database.

You can scroll through the A-Z and choose a database if you know exactly what you are looking for.

Alternatively, you can select your subject from the drop down subject menu to see a subset of resources in that category.

The subject listings will highlight the 'core resources'; these are key databases that are likely to be of interest to anyone studying and researching in that area.


Research material can be drawn from a wide range of different types of information. You may wish to use specialist sources such as anatomy resources, news items and statistical data.

Find out more by visiting the Searching for specific types of information libguide

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