When searching for articles in a database, you will need to identify a number of keyword search terms to use based on your topic.
Using the * at the end of the root word (for example, agricultur*) will tell the database to find the word, the plural form, and any related words with different suffixes (e.g, agriculture, agricultural)
Next, you need to combine these serach terms with connectors to create a search statement to use in the database. You will want to create several different search statements to use for searching.
Here are some search statement examples:
Irrigat* AND California AND broccoli*
(water OR groundwater) AND irrigat* AND broccoli
TIP You won’t want to enter a phrase (such as 'how technology impacts broccoli irrigation practices in California') in the search box of the database or index, because the database will not be able to understand it and you won't get any results. Remember to pick out the important words for your topic and use AND/OR to combine them into a search statement.
The Right Tool
It is equally important to use the right database to search for articles. The databases listed below are appropriate for searching for articles for the essay assignment. Make sure you select the database that is most appropriate for your topic, and keep in mind that you may need to use more than one to find articles.
AGRICOLA is a comprehensive index to journal articles, book chapters, theses and more in the field of agriculture. Disciplines covered include food & human nutrition, agricultural engineering & technology, earth & environmental sciences.
American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) Technical Library includes technical papers from meetings and conferences, peer-reviewed journal articles, the ASABE membership magazine, textbooks, reference books, and standards.
CAB Abstracts provides research information on agriculture and related applied life sciences, including Agriculture, Animal Health, Forestry, Human Health and Nutrition, and Natural Resources Management. Global Health from CABI is the definitive international public health database.
Compendex is a comprehensive bibliographic database of scientific and technical engineering research, covering all engineering disciplines. It includes millions of bibliographic citations and abstracts from thousands of engineering journals and conference proceedings.
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This comprehensive geoscience database covers topics in economic geology, environmental and engineering geology, geophysics, hydrology, paleontology, petrology, marine geology and oceanography, and mineralogy. Indexed content includes journal articles, books, maps, conference papers, reports, and theses.
The geology of North America is covered from 1666 to the present, and global coverage dates back to 1933. Access also includes GeoRef In Process.
Google Scholar provides a simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles. Search results may be from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations. Help setting Library Links to access Cal Poly resources is available here.
Web of Science (Core Collection) provides a single search across Arts & Humanities Citation Index, Science Citation Index, and Social Sciences Citation Index. Additional Web of Science databases are easily accessible.