A database is simply an online collection of information.
It generally contains journal articles, but most databases also hold book chapters, book reviews, reports, and conference papers.
Sometimes only the abstract, or summary, of a journal article will be available in a database but often you will be able to read the full text of the article too.
Why should I use an individual database instead of doing all my searches in MultiSearch?
MultiSearch is great for finding out the range of sources we have available on any given topic but once you start to research a topic in more depth you will want more flexibility to save your results and keep up to date with new publications.
Most databases allow you to save searches and set up saved search alerts that send you any new items that matches your search. This is one of the advantages of using the database directly rather than always using MultiSearch.
Procedures for subscribing to email or RSS alerts vary for different databases. Example for Ebsco and Science Direct databases below:
DkIT Library subscribes to various databases. Some cover a range of subjects, others are more specific and cover just one main subject area.
Usually, you'll need to login to a database using your name and student number.
We all use Google to find information in our private lives but in college you will be expected to find credible, academic quality information for your assignments. Not all good quality information is available free online. The Library pays for access to the information in subscribed databases just as we pay to buy the books you see on the shelves. Using these databases will save you time and effort and because the information has been evaluated for accuracy and credibility you can rely on its quality.