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Finding Information Starter Guide: Databases: the Basics

Very basic beginner overview of our information resources and how best to find books, journals and use our databases. Aimed at new students.


Databases organise, store and retrieve large amounts of data or information. Our range includes databases containing lists of references to academic /scholarly materials, full text online collections, and collections of other formats, such as maps and images.
Databases can be very helpful with providing relevant and up to date material, to help you with your research or studies. They provide a range of pre-selected material that is authoritative, reliable and scholarly.

This differentiates them from general search engines such as Google and for more effective results you should try them instead of such search engines. If you want to continue using Google please avail of our guide to getting the best out of it for academic use.

UCD Library subscribes to a wide range of these databases; some cover many subjects and others are specialised.

Database content may include: e-Journal articles, e-Books, Magazine articles, Newspaper articles, Reference material, Case studies, Reports, Conference papers, Theses, Standards, Images, Maps.

  • Use our databases interface to search for databases

  • If you know the title that you want to use then key this into the top search box, and select the highlighted database title or in the full record displayed click on the Resource Home hot link to access and use the database.

  • To see long lists of which databases we have for your subject area select one of the subjects offered, and then from the next listing select a more specific subject area and you will receive a list of databases that you can use.

To see a much briefer pre-selected set of Key databases for your subject, select a Library subject guide and move to the Journal Articles and Databases page: a concise list of database recommendations is then presented to you.

Databases are available via our OneSearch service.


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JSTOR: Subject Searching for Articles

Watch a short tutorial on how to search for information on a subject in JSTOR: