So you’re working on a project for class, and you need to do research. Luckily, SCAD’s library website offers links to some of the most thorough online databases. This post will go through some of the most popular databases available.
To find the following databases you’ll have to navigate to SCAD’s library homepage. To do so you can either log on to MySCAD and click the Library tab, or go directly to the library website. Both options will lead to the same page, so this step is more of a matter of convenience and ease.
Once you’re on the library’s homepage, you’ll see a row of drop-down menus. The left-most option, titled “Library Services” has a link called “eLearning.” Clicking that link will take you to a page detailing all the different services offered through SCAD’s library system. For now, focus on the section titled “Online Information Sources.” Click on the hyperlinked “Databases” and it will take you to this page. There you can search for databases based on subject, title, and source type (video, image, journal etc.).
If you’re confused by the amount of databases available, here’s a couple that have proven to be reliable and trustworthy.
JSTOR: Arguably the most used journal database, JSTOR features articles from scholarly journals spanning a broad area of subjects. From Finance to Paleontology, there’s something for everyone here. JSTOR’s homepage is simple to use. You can either browse journals by subject, or you can input a specific search term. The results will include all journals that use the term you searched.
Like all databases featured in this post, JSTOR has an advanced search option. It allows you to narrow down your search by language, item type (article, review etc.) and subject. This is probably the better option for those of you that have a clear idea of what you’re looking for.
A word of warning: JSTOR does not, unfortunately, have the most recent journal volumes online. Generally, volumes from two to five years ago are not available.
LexisNexis Academic: Besides boasting a name that would make Lex Luthor proud, LexisNexis is also the go-to database for newspaper articles, legal news and documents and company financial information. In contrast to JSTOR, LexisNexis’s homepage is slightly more cluttered. The upside is that search options have already been divided, meaning you can search for something specific as soon as you enter the site. The amount of searchable material is also very large, including most major newspaper publications (from the 1980s to today) and information from 43 million companies.
ARTstor: Of course, there’s no way to ignore a database for images. This is SCAD after all. ARTstor contains over one million images encompassing nearly the entirety of art history. It’s a pretty broad area to search without a specific term in mind. Much like JSTOR, ARTstor features a simple search option on its homepage and an option to browse artwork by broad categories like area and classification. Additonally, the database offers an advanced search option that allows you to search artworks by geographical place of origin, time period and more specific classification (painting, film sculpture, etc.). There’s no need to worry about using the actual images as sources in your paper. As long as it’s for educational purposes, you’ll be allowed to print or download images from the site.
This is just a small sample of the databases available to you. Though they’re the most popular, they’re by no means the only ones. In order to make your project the best it can be, you’ll have to decide which database bets fits with what you’re going for.