Finding and Evaluating Information

With a world of information at our fingertips, the ability to locate and discern reliable information sources is essential. Learn how to search for and evaluate information using the library and other resources.

Search the Catalog

Use the library's Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC) to search our collection by keyword, title, author, or subject.

Visit Search Help for tips on how to use the catalog.

Resource Guides

Ask a Librarian

News Articles

Library Databases

How to Search a Database

  1. Identify the main concepts you want to find information on.
  2. Brainstorm words and terms related to your topic or questions.
  3. Identify relevant databases: find databases by subject or see our resource guides.
  4. Create a search strategy using search terms appropriate to your topic. You can also search our databases by keywords in specific fields such as author and title.
  5. Evaluate your search results.
  6. Continue as needed!

Search Tips

  • Use Boolean operators to combine your search terms and optimize your results.
    • Use NOT before a term to exclude it from your search results. (Ex: Amazon NOT rainforest)
    • Use AND to find results that contain both search terms. (Ex: cancer AND diet)
    • Use OR to find results that contain any of your search terms. (Ex: vaccination OR immunization)
    • Learn more about Boolean terms and how to use them.
  • Search for exact phrases by enclosing them in quotation marks. (Ex: "working from home")
  • Use built-in filters to limit results by date or other limiters.
  • As you search, examine the most relevant results for alternative or additional search terms to use. You may want to add or drop search terms as you go and try different combinations of words.

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