When you have a search strategy you can move on to consider where you might find evidence to answer your question. Research databases are a good place to find scholarly evidence. Research databases provide access to research, including journal articles, conference proceedings and book chapters.
This section will guide you through applying a basic search on Medline (Ovid). This database will help you to identify a range of materials for your assessments.
It is important that you consider a range of sources in the search process as you are unlikely to find the information you need on one source alone. Details of all of the databases you can access are available through the A-Z databases list. You can go straight to your subject guide to get an idea of the key resources in your discipline.
What is a database?
Research databases enable you to see what has been published in the area you are researching. They contain detailed records of thousands of journal articles, book references and conference proceedings. These records usually include the article title, authors, abstract (a brief summary), keywords (to enable your search to find it) and more.
Why should I use a database?
You can tailor your search more precisely using all the sophisticated functionality available on the research databases.
It is important to note:
So, when searching databases, be prepared for an extra step.
After finding a relevant article or book you need to check whether you have access to that item, either in print or in full-text online. Many of the databases will have a Check for this at Exeter button; clicking on this link will check whether we have access to the item.