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SSH205 Library Instruction

What are Articles and Databases?

What are “articles”?


Articles appear in magazines, newspapers, and journals. Scholarly articles appear in journals and they are written by researchers, professors and other experts.


Scholarly articles:

  • Contain expert knowledge

  • Are double checked for accuracy

  • Have good research methods

  • Focus on a specific topic/issue

We recommend using scholarly articles when researching because they represent the type of research and writing you should be aiming for in your own assignments.

You might also find an article that disagrees with your argument. Incorporating “dissenting” sources into your paper and debating their merit with your other supporting sources is exactly what scholarship is about. Scholarly writing is a conversation and a debate between your ideas and your sources.


 Remember that accuracy and quality of information matters


Example of an Article

example of first page of article


What are "databases"?

A database is an organized collection of information. Computer databases with web interfaces allow users to easily find the content that they are looking for. Netflix is a database of streaming video; Amazon is a database of consumer goods; subject specific library databases are collections of scholarly articles, ebooks, and more.


Database Hierarchy is similar to Netflix hierarchy - explanation below in a word document

Why are databases awesome?

Library databases allow you to search through millions of scholarly and popular articles, making your life easier. They let you:

  • Read full text of articles in PDF or HTML (just look for the “Full Text Link” or the “GET IT” link)

  • Narrow your results to only “peer reviewed”

  • Email the article to yourself

  • Show you how to cite your article in APA (or another citation style you need)

Here’s an example from our ProQuest Database:

 Proquest search

How to Find Articles with Search Everything

Omni Search Tool:

  • Located on the Library homepage 

  • Discovery search box (like Google for Libraries). Searches across our collections of scholarly articles, books, ebooks, newspapers, and other resources


Using Omni (Video)



1. Search using keywords (or the title/author if you know it)


2. Refine using filters on the left of the result page.

  1. Content type (book, journal article, newspaper, etc.)  

  2. Peer reviewed, publication date, discipline, etc.​​


3. Get your sources.

  1. Online Items Only link is for articles and ebooks

    1. Link will bring you to another page with the full text of the article or ebook.

  2. Save or Cite your results using the icons on the right side of your source.  



Try It: 

1. Go to the Library Home Page 

2. Search using the keywords: "Student Motivation" AND "Online Learning"

3. Limit your results to peer reviewed articles only

4. Filter by "Available online" using the facets on the left-hand side

5. Pick one of your results and click on "Available Online" to view the full record

6. Email the record yourself by clicking the "Email" icon under the "Send To" section

7. Use one of the links under the "View Online" section to access the resource

How to Find Articles with Subject Databases

Subject Databases:

  • The Library subscribes to various databases that contain collections of scholarly articles, newspapers, magazines, reports, videos,etc.

  • Use to find: scholarly & peer reviewed articles, newspapers, magazines, corporate reports, trade magazines, online videos and images.

Directions (Locating Databases): 


1. Locate the Research Databases tab on the Library’s homepage




2. Pick your subject area or “multi-disciplinary” etc., 


3. Choose from a list of databases in your subject area. 

*You will have to search more than one database – different databases contain different articles on your topic

example of database list for Accounting


Directions For Searching within Subject Databases

  1. Search using keywords

  2. Use the menu options to refine your results*

    1. Peer Reviewed, date range, etc.,

  3. Use the save or cite options*

*Because each database is owned by a different company, the location of the refine options and save / cite options are in different locations on the result page for each database.


Example of a results list from an EBSCO database (America: History & Life)

example of how to refine your results in an EBSCO database


Example of a results list from a PROQUEST database (Canadian Business & Current Affairs Database)

Example of Proquest Database result list

Try It: 

1. Go to the Library Home Page 

2. Click on Database tab

3. Pick a subject area you are currently studying

4. Chose a database under that subject area

5. Search using keywords related to the area you are studying

6. Limit your results to peer reviewed in the database

7. Pick one of your results and click on "Full Text Online" and locate the PDF of the article

8. Locate the email icon in the database to email the article to yourself

Instructions - Use Google Scholar to find articles

Google Scholar

If you love Google, Google Scholar can be an easy way to search for articles. You can use Google Scholar to search TMU’s databases. When searching at home, follow these instructions to ensure you have access to all resources available to the TMU community.

*You can only enable Google Scholar to access TMU databases and articles; you will be asked to log in using your TMU ID when your try to access these resources.

1. Under the Google Scholar Menu (top left), Click on Settings 




2. Next click on “Library Links” (On the left-hand side)



3. Type in Toronto Metropolitan University and click on the Toronto Metropolitan Library - Check TMU Libraries option.



Now you will have access  to all resources subscribed to by the TMU Libraries, but you will be asked to log-in with your TMU ID.

How to Find Books

You can search for books using the Omni Search Tool on the Library's home page (


Using Omni:

1. Search using keywords  (or the title if you know it)

Library front page

2. Next refine using filters on the left of the result page.

  1. Choose Books & eBooks under the Resource Type


Getting your Books:

  • eBooks will have a link with the text "Available Online"
  • The link will bring you to a list of databases with the full text of the ebook.
  • For physical books - look for the status and location (call number)
  • Status will be either Available or On Loan (plus the date it is due back)

Example of eBook and physical books:






Module 4: Quiz