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Websites vs. Database Articles

Articles from library databases are acceptable for research papers. NOTE: Although you search the databases via the internet, they are not considered websites.

Unlike web pages that can be created and posted by anyone, library databases contain pre-selected, quality, and controlled articles. NOTE: Like any source, evaluate it carefully - library databases do contain a variety of sources including editorials and opinion pieces.

How do I find articles on a topic?

  • On the Library Home Page, use:
    • Search@UW to do a quick search in the majority of our databases, plus UW System Books OR
    • Select EBSCO which offers 45+ databases  OR
    • Find a specific database by name with either the Find Databases A-Z list or searching by title of the database in Search@UW (ex: PsycInfo) OR
    • Click on the Find Databases link for additional choices (use subject, type or vendor dropdowns)

Type keywords or phrases that describe your topic

  • Try a variety of keywords to increase your chances of finding information on your topic (ex: green design, sustainability)
  • Use the special database features to narrow by relevancy, date, peer-reviewed, etc.

What is a "Database"?

Database: An organized collection of data, usually searchable by keywords.

Library Databases are organized by subject or discipline, such as business or education, and some are multidisciplinary. Some databases include articles in journals, magazines, newspapers; another may include books, book chapters, conference proceedings, etc.; or another may be specialized, such as just encyclopedias; and some may be combinations. 

Companies, or vendors, may offer several databases. The Library pays a yearly subscription fee for each database.

Getting the Article

   Links to:

  • full text in another database or
  • the list of links to databases that have the article or
  • the Fetch It for Me link to request from another source if the article is not available full text online 

When you have a journal title:

View Find it! Video  (1 minute)