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Database Search Tips
AND requires all specified words to appear in each item
e.g. festival* AND Hindu*
OR requires any of the specified words to appear in
e.g. Ganesa OR Visnu
NOT excludes terms not desired
e.g. goddess* AND Hindu* AND (art OR literature)
prioritize your concepts to begin your search with
the most important one
consider additional concepts to use, if necessary, to
reduce or expand retrieval
if the database has a thesaurus, either online or
print, check for suggested terms
ATLA Religion Database
This full text database is a collection of major religion and theology journals selected by some of the major religion scholars in the United States. Journals representing all major religious faiths, major denominations, and language groups are included. Information dates as far back as 1949, and coverage continues through the present.
Religious & Theological Abstracts
R&TA provides summaries of articles appearing in scholarly journals in the fields of Religion and Theology. It currently abstracts more than 400 journals, with summaries produced by a team of scholars from around the world. Coverage includes journals relating to Christianity, Judaism, and other world religions. English language abstracts are provided for articles in French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Afrikaans, Hebrew, Italian, and Spanish.
Useful MultiDisciplinary Databases
Click here for a complete list of the Library's databases in religious studies.
Academic Search Complete
Academic Search Complete is the comprehensive scholarly, multi-disciplinary full-text database, with more than 5,300 full-text periodicals, including 4,400 peer-reviewed journals. In addition to full text, this database offers indexing and abstracts for more than 9,300 journals and a total of 9,810 publications including monographs, reports, conference proceedings, etc.
Full text of backfiles of more than 1100 journals in the humanities, social sciences, sciences and education. Coverage is from volume 1 on, excluding latest 3-5 years.
Academic OneFile Select (Gale)
Provides access to scholarly journals, magazines, and newspapers across disciplines. The database meets research needs in subject areas including the arts and humanities, social sciences, and science and technology
Not finding enough material?
- if you have combined several concepts using AND, start again and search only the most important one. Then add the next most important one, and so forth
- look at each concept and see if you can think of additional synonyms (use OR)
- if you are searching free-text, look at your terms carefully and think of ways to broaden your phrasing
Finding too much material?
- look at a sample of the items retrieved; if a high proportion is not relevant, add another concept
- sometimes irrelevant records may be eliminated by NOTing out a particular aspect or population
- try limiting by language, date, form of material, particular field instead of free-text