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Tech 500 - Integrated CEPS Seminar I (UNH Durham): Find Articles

Introduction to the UNH Library's locations, collections, and services for Prof. Pazicni's Tech 500 class.

What is an Article?

Articles are special because they are published as individual pieces within a larger work, such as a journal or magazine (periodical), blog, newspaper, or conference proceeding.  Journal articles, since the 1600's, contain the formal record of scientific discovery, so they are vital to scholarly research in science and engineering.

In regular library catalogs, you can search for the title of a whole journal, magazine, newspaper, or conference proceeding.  However, the catalog does not include articles, just as it does not include book chapters.  That is why it doesn't work to look up an article's author or title in the library catalog.  Use the library "databases" to search for articles.  For general instructions on finding articles at the UNH Library, see the "Find" tab or click here.

Find Journals

Scholarly periodicals are often called "journals." To find out whether UNH has a particular journal, you can search for its title in the UNH Library Catalog to find all UNH Library holdings. Or, you can search the list of UNH fulltext online journals.

For help interpreting journal abbreviations, ask a librarian/library staff or check the list of Science and Engineering Journal Abbreviations

Getting Articles from Selected Magazines

To do a search on science or engineering ethics or policy, or to select certain entry-level science magazines, the Academic Search Complete (ASC) database is useful.  You will find citations and you'll need to locate the articles, too.  These are mostly not primary source or peer-reviewed articles, so if you need those, don't limit your search to this list of magazines.  Use scholarly journals, instead (see right-hand list of databases).

1.  When you search, you can limit to specific "source" magazines.  For example, use a search box and change the dropdown field to Source.  This means the words you are searching will just be in the magazine title.  If you want to limit your search to these 7 magazines, you can copy and paste this line, adding any other recommended titles.  Note that "OR" means your search terms can be in any of these specific magazines.  All of these are indexed by Academic Source Complete.

Scientific American OR Science News OR National Geographic OR Discover OR Smithsonian OR Natural History OR New Scientist

2.  Each magazine has its own focus, so try searching with different keywords to get best results.  Save the results you like each time, before you move on.  Look for articles with article titles you understand. 

For example, you could be searching for articles on the earthquake in Japan in the spring of 2011, the tsunami that followed, and the crisis at the Fukushima nuclear power station there. Search terms (keywords) could be:  tsunami, earthquake, Japan, nuclear, accident or disaster.  To learn enough background to choose keywords, Wikipedia or Google are good starting points.

3. You can use a date limit.  This earthquake was in 2011, so articles published before 2011 would not cover it.  Most article databases have a date limit; in ASC, scroll down the search page to "Publication Date" and input an appropriate month and year for starting and ending coverage.

MODEL IN ACTION:  Click to see this search 

 4. After you search, to get the articles:

a)  Click on the article title to see its summary (abstract).  Decide if you want to read the article.  If you do...

b) ASC offers links to these choices for fulltext: 

  • HTML Fulltext  -- the article in HTML.  Text but usually NO GRAPHICS (pictures, tables, charts, etc.)!
  • PDF Fulltext  -- the article in PDF.  Includes text and graphics (it's a copy of the full article).
  • Check for Fulltext -- this checks what UNH offers.  It can link to the online article or journal, or give you other options for getting the article. 

Getting a print copy:  if there are no online links to the article or journal, the "Check for Fulltext" page will show links to automatically search the Library Catalog by journal title or ISSN.

 When you are at the journal's record in the UNH Library Catalog, if the location of the volume you need says Storage Per Request Item, use the Request icon at the top toolbar to request the volume you need.  Or, use the InterLibrary Loan form online (see below) to request a scan of the article and we'll make one for you.

 If the UNH Library does not have the article you need, the Check for Fulltext page links to InterLibrary Loan so that you can order the article conveniently at no charge. If you are a First-Time User, log in with your UNH user ID and password (Blackboard ID) and fill out the registration. (more InterLibrary Loaninfo)

Databases for articles

Where are the databases?

Database List iconThe Library home page has a complete list of databases organized by topic, type, and title.  Find it by clicking the folder icon on the left side of the page.  Top databases are starred and shown at the top of each subject list.

There are also side tabs named "Articles" and "Databases." The Articles tab offers a quick discovery search across many topics using multiple databases and the library catalog. It is not complete for sci-tech fields. The Databases tab allows you to search for the databases themselves by their names and descriptions.

Do databases have the articles?

Some have articles within them and some link out to the articles in their original source publications, such as journals, magazines, and conference proceedings. The UNH Library "Check for Fulltext" icon is available in most of our databases.  Click it to find out if we have the article online; a new page will open with results and options.

 

Search for Articles with Library Databases

  • To find articles for ENE 520 projects, try these techniques and click below to see what happens in the model search:

            1.  Use the Academic Search Complete database because it includes general-audience science magazines among its many other sources.  Scientific American is one of the best sources for your projects!

            2.  When searching, use one of the lines for the Source title to limit your search to these 7 magazines (you can copy and paste this line, adding any other titles that are recommended):

Scientific American OR Science News OR National Geographic OR Discover OR Smithsonian OR Natural History OR New Scientist

(another good magazine is named Earth -- you can add that to the list, but be aware that you will also get articles from research journals with Earth in the title)

            3.  Each magazine has a different focus, so try searching a few times, varying your search keywords to get best results. Look for articles with article titles you understand -- primary research articles are NOT what you want for this project!

For example, you could be searching for articles on the earthquake in Japan in the spring of 2011, the tsunami that followed, and the crisis at the nuclear power station there. Search terms (keywords) could be:  tsunami, earthquake, Japan, nuclear, accident or disaster.  To get enough background to develop keywords, you could use Wikipedia and Google.  Those are just starting points.  Then you would learn the name of the nuclear plant in the disaster, Fukushima, and could add that to your searches.

            4. Use a date limit -- this earthquake happened in 2011, so I only want articles published in 2011 or later.  Article search databases always have a way to do this; in Academic Search Premier, scroll down the search page to "Publication Date" and put in the month and year that you want for starting and ending points.

MODEL IN ACTION:  Click to see this search 

            5.  After you search, get the articles!  All you get with the search is the abstract, or summary. See box to the left...

  • A word to the wise:  Proper nouns like Fukushima, Bill Gates, or SpongeBob are powerful in searches, but they can also rule out some results, so try your search both with and without a proper noun.  'Here's an example-- if you were looking for articles on running shoes, and you just use Nike in your search, you could get some nice articles that mention Nike, but you won't get articles that simply don't happen to mention that brand. You would want to do some searching just with broad keywords like running shoes or athletic shoes, and a different search for brand names using the word OR since they might not all be in the same article (Nike or Adidas or Ryka).

 

Tips for Successful Online Searching