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PSY 111 (Middletown)

Creating a Great Online Search (and Managing Your Results)

  • Be specific when you search, using multiple keywords to describe your question.
  • In library databases, use “Limit by Subject” and “Subject: Thesaurus Terms” to focus your search to subject terms used in that database.
  • In addition to printing articles, keep in mind that you may also email them to yourself or save them to your M: drive so you may retrieve documents from home or on campus.
  • Remember that you can also email yourself the citation for an article from the email function, or use the "Cite" button to view and copy a citation from the screen.
  • If an item does not have a PDF or HTML full-text link, click on “Find It!” to see if the article may be found in full-text somewhere outside the database you are using.  This will also allow you to see if Miami owns the periodical in print or microform at one of our libraries. 
  • If there are articles that cannot be found in full-text from other Miami or OhioLINK Libraries, you may use Interlibrary Loan to request articles from other libraries.
  • Ask a librarian!  We are happy to help you.  

Sample Psychology Search

Here is an example search on the meaning of developmental disabilities.  You could substitute any other terms and use the same methods to find articles that you need.

I tried two approaches to this question:

  1. I entered the terms "developmental and disabilities and definition" into the top search blank of the Academic Search Complete database.  I also checked off "Scholarly (Peer-Reviewed Articles)".  This turned up over 500 articles that included the term "definition" in the titles or abstracts of articles that also cover developmental disabilities. The tricky part of this is that the majority (or perhaps all) of the articles deal with specific disabilities rather than the general concept of "developmental disabilities". 
  2. I tried a similar search in the PsycINFO database.  I first entered "developmental disabilities" (quotations included) in the search blank. I then chose to search for it as a subject term. The results will focus on any articles that have developmental disabilities as a main focus. As there are thousands of results, you would want to narrow down by article type, years or publication, and added search terms.

You could definitely play around with joining "meaning" or "definition" or "history" with developmental disabilities in either database.  You could also try focusing on a given disability (instead of just typing "developmental disabilities") to see what you find connected to "meaning," etc.

Your Librarians

Contact your Gardner-Harvey Library librarians:

John Burke

Jessie Long

Phone: 513-727-3222
Chat with us at AskGHL
Text: 513-273-5360

Citing Sources in Your Works Cited

Finding Statistical Sources