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Math 200

Select a Database

You can start your search using OneSearch, which searches across multiple databases.

Or from the Library Website, click Databases to see a  complete list of Databases and on that page, select a subject for a list of suggested subject specific databases.



Recommended Databases

Need to find  articles on subjects in the fields of  Health and/or Psychology?

Search at least one of these databases to locate articles about your topics


If you have any questions or need library research assistance, please contact me or find more assistance at Ask a Librarian.

Your keywords: Break Down Topic into Search Terms

Break Down Your Topic

1.  Choose what you plan to write about then take notes that briefly describe your topic.   Write your topic either as a question you would like to explore or a statement you would like to support.

For example:

I plan to write about teenager with sleep problems related to drinking caffeinated  beverages 

2.  Identify the main ideas or keywords in your topic description.  These main ideas will be the search words you use to search your topic  (also known as the keywords).  The main ideas are not complete sentences and should only include 1-4 words. 

For example:

The Keywords are:

Sleep Problems  Teenagers    caffeinated beverages 


  1. For each keyword, list additional words you could search instead that are either similar in meaning or related in meaning.   When you search for the info you may have to play with your vocabulary to find enough information about your topic. 

For example:

If my keywords are:

Sleep Problems  Teenagers  caffeinated beverages 


What words could I search instead that are similar or related, and that could be boarder terms or narrower terms?

For Example:

Sleep Problems.   teenagers  caffeinated beverages 
Sleep Disorders  young adults coffee
Sleep disruption  adolescent  tea
Insomnia   youth Red Bull

Notice in the example above some of the search words is broader or more general and some narrower.   So if you have two many search results add a narrow keyword.  Not enough?  Add a broader keywords.


Structure your library database search

Most often we use Google to search for information, but the information we need to complete our work is not always freely available on the web.  Sometimes searching a library database is a more effective use of time.  Searching library databases require using a slightly different search structure to effectively locate the information you need.  The information in this section will help you build effect database searches so you can more effectively use our OneSearch database and other databases too.

Structuring your Search


Combine Keywords/Concepts

Searching databases requires a little more search structure than our average  Google Search.

Always try more than one search!

You can combine your keywords using AND, OR & NOT 

For more about structuring your searches in databases using AND, OR, & NOT (what librarians call Boolean Logic), watch the following videos:



Search Tips

  • When AND is between two words, your search results will be limited to sources that contain both words.
    • For example:  Twitter AND identity


  •   OR expands your search since either word can appear in your search results.
    • For example teenage girls OR  young women


  • NOT excludes information, so it  removes the word that appears after NOT from all your search results.  
    • For example:  Twitter NOT Facebook 



  • Use quotations (know as "phrase searching") to limit the search results.  The words in quotation marks will be searched as an exact phrase
    • For example: "social media"


  • Use an asterisk* for alternate word endings,
    • For example: teach* will pull results containing teaching, teach, teacher, etc.


Want assistance constructing your search?  Ask a Librarian

Use Psychology & Education Databases

Watch this video for step by step search instructions

Please see the following handout for instructions on how to search for education & psychology articles. Education & Psychology Articles.docx

Use OneSearch

‚ÄčOur library has access to more than 50 databases, many of them tailored for specific fields such as art, business, literature, medicine, and psychology. 
We have a complete list of our databases listed alphabetically or by subject on our library website. 


Not sure what database to choose?


Start with Skyline College Library's

 OneSearch Logo  

OneSearch provides simple, one-stop searching for books and e-books, videos, articles, digital media, and more;  it combines the contents of many of the databases our library subscribes to.

To Find books & articles in our library, use the search strategies in the

 Database Searching - Structure your search.


OneSearch Search Steps :

1. On the Library's homepage, enter your search words into the main search box (OneSearch).  Next, click the search button or hit enter.
2.  Next, a window/tab will open with your search results.  You can select options on the left side of your screen to limit your search results to specific resource types, dates and other options.
3.  To view articles or ebooks you've found, you'll need to sign in "to get complete results and request items" (upper right corner).  Use the same login information you use for Canvas. 
4. Next, click on the title you're interested in, and a window with more information will pop up.  To access the full text of the article, e-book, or other sources you'd like to view, click one of the databases (EBSCO, JSTOR, etc.) under "View Online."  For citation information for the article or other source, click "citation" above "View Online." To email the source to yourself, use the "email" button. 

Watch the following OneSearch video about how to:

  • Search
  • Limit your search results
  • Locate a book in the library 
  • Get the full text of an article or eBook
  • Copy citation information