Use the Library website to find journal articles
Begin your search at the library homepage. From the LibrarySearch box, you can find books, journals, and other resources in our library catalogue in addition to searching for articles across multiple databases.
In the LibrarySearch box, type in the keywords relevant to your research topic.
For example, if your topic is about the Catholic ran residential schools in Canada, you can enter the keywords
Catholic residential schools Canada
You will get a list of results such as Articles, Books, Reviews, and more! To find scholarly articles, underneath Filter your results select "Peer-reviewed articles" under Show Only and select "APPLY FILTERS" when prompted.
Narrow down your list to get better articles
Sometimes you will get hundreds of results. Use the filters in the left hand sidebar to narrow down your list of sources. You can filter your search results by Subject, Publication Date, and Language.
You can also narrow down your search results by adding different keywords. If you are looking for a specific phrase or multi-word term, residential schools, put the phrase in quotes: "residential schools".
Identifying book reviews
While searching for journal articles, you may come across book reviews. Examine the citation for the article to distinguish between journal articles and book reviews.
In the example below, you can see this is a book review as it indicates the book author's name, title, and publisher. The page numbers also indicate it's only 1 page long, suggesting it is a book review.
Why should you use subject specific databases?
Recommended Subject Specific Database
(residential schools, Indigenous genocide)
Use the Library website to find books
In the library homepage search box, type in the keywords relevant to your research topic. When searching for books, remember to use simple, broad keywords.
From the list of results, underneath Filter your results on the left sidebar select "Books" under Format and select "APPLY FILTERS" when prompted to see the the library catalogue search results.
Narrow down your list of books
You can refine your search with various filters on the left sidebar, such as Library, Subject, Publication Date, and Language.
For ebooks, you can also click on the Online checkbox at the top of the page underneath show only.
When choosing books or articles for your paper, consider the following:
Scholarly journal articles report on original research by experts in a particular academic discipline. Often they go through a peer-review process, which means that they are evaluated by reputable scholars in the field before they are published.
Criteria for evaluating scholarly journals
Who wrote it? What are their credentials?
Does the author acknowledge his or her sources? How?
Is the content substantial?
Does it appear to be valid and well-researched?
Does it make sense, based on your own background knowledge, or what other articles have to say on the topic?
Is the language scholarly?
Is the article well written?
Do illustrations and data support the content in a scholarly fashion, or do they appear to be attention-getting, or sensational?
Who is the article written for?
Is it written for experts and researchers in the field, or for members of the general public?
Is it published in a scholarly journal?
RADAR (Rationale, Authority, Date, Accuracy, and Relevance)
Another helpful way to evaluate the credibility of a information source is through the framework RADAR (Rationale, Authority, Date, Accuracy, and Relevance). See the guide for using RADAR for more detailed guidelines about how to evaluate the quality and usefulness of an information source for your research
Adapted from: Mandalios, J. (2013). RADAR: An approach for helping students evaluate Internet sources. Journal of Information Science, 39(4), 470–478,
A primary source is a document that was created at the time of the event or subject you've chosen to study, or by people who were observers of, or participants in that event or topic
Think about what kinds of primary sources might be related to your topic:
Four ways to find primary sources:
1. Start with what you already have to uncover references to primary sources. Consult your:
They can also help you identify relevant historical figures, authors, or keywords for searching library database
2. Use the library catalogue to find books and other materials
Combine keywords for different kinds of primary sources with keywords for your topic to find them in the library catalogue.
world war 1942 correspondence
national socialism documents
Primary source keywords
3. Use reliable online primary source collections
See the Image and Visual Resource Collections guide for comprehensive links to image and visual resource databases.
Oral history may be in manuscript, print, microform, audio, or video format. It may be identified through a variety of tools throughout this guide, using relevant keywords.
For example, to find oral histories in the library catalogue, use keywords such as the following with your subject:
How do I get the full text?
There are lots of ways to get research help right when you need it:
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