How to Search
Step 1: Enter search terms just as you would when web searching.
Step 2: Refining a Search
Usually, your result set should be under 150.
Adapting your search strategy and narrowing your search helps to ensure that you find the most relevant results.
Add Facets to Narrow Your Search
Add Search Terms and Refine Your Search
AND Add concepts to narrow your search. What aspect of your topic interests you?
OR Databases search only for the words you use. Use synonyms to broaden your search.
Phrases Use quotation marks around a group of words to search for those words in that specific order.
Truncation The star * is the truncation symbol for most research databases.
Use it to find all words that start with those letters.
So, histor* searches: history, historians, historical, histories, etc.
Step 3: Getting Results
Often, "Full Text Online" will be available.
When it is not, "Check Other SMU Options" to search the library catalog and find if the article or book is available in print.
If it isn't available at SMU, place an Interlibrary Loan request. We will borrow it for you from another library, to use here.
Email yourself the citations in the correct style for the course.
Double check to make sure the citation generator is correct.
See our guide about Citations and Citing Sources for more information about citation generators and managers.
Discover SMU Libraries
Search all SMU's library databases to find articles, books, DVDs, and more. Discover is especially helpful for introductory or interdisciplinary searching.