October 24th, 2010

Searching for Stand Alone Journals

The library usually adds to its collection by purchasing entire databases, but sometimes there is a specific journal that is so important for its field that we will buy it separately. These journals can be difficult to locate, but there are a couple options for you to find them within the Capella Library.

Before I talk about finding specific journals, however, remember that if you need to find articles by topic and don’t mind which journal the article comes from, then try searching Summon or one of the subject-specific databases.

If you have a specific title in mind, you can always check Journal and Book Locator and search for that title, for instance, Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology. But did you know that you can also run a search to find all the journals in the library that have certain keywords in their titles? For instance, if you want to see if we have journals about sports psychology, you can run the following search: sport* psycholog*

Journal and Book Locator search for sport* psycholog*

Note that sport* will search for any word that starts with the word sport: sport, sports, sporting, etc. Same with psycholog*: psychology, psychologist, etc.

You will get the following results. Note that several of them are not located in databases that you can find on the Databases A-Z page:

Journal and Book Locator search results list

The limitation of this search is that we can only find journals by title. That means that we might miss journals that are about our topic, but whose titles don’t use the specific words we searched for.

This brings me to another method you can use to find articles from our stand alone journals: Search databases with the Full Text box unchecked. Most databases index more journals than they include full text. By searching with the full text feature off, you will get additional results. In fact, if you’re a doctoral learner working on your dissertation, we recommend that you always search the databases with the full text limiter turned off to make sure that you are conducting a thorough search of the literature.

When you run a search without limiting to full text, you will then naturally get some results that will not have a full text link. Instead, some of the results will say Find Full Text or Linked Full Text (Ebsco databases). Simply click on the link to see if the article is available in either another database or from one of our stand alone journals.

To continue with our sports psychology theme, you would pick an appropriate database for your topic, in this case PsycINFO, and then run a search such as the one below, making sure to uncheck the full text limiter:

1st search box: sport*

2nd search box: pscycholog*

PsycINFO search for sport psychology

Now, even though PsycINFO doesn’t include the full text for the Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, we can pull up results for it (and other stand alone journals) because PsycINFO does index it. Click on the Find Full Text link to see if the library has the article:

Find Full Text link in PsycINFO

As always, if you have questions about article searching, Ask a Librarian!


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