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Search & Find

The contents in this section identify the many ways that you can search and locate resources, from using your 'Resource Lists' - recommended reading from within your Blackboard modules - to using specialised databases and e-resources. 

Using Books

Scholarly books can contain comprehensive accounts of research or scholarship, historical data, overviews, experts' views on themes/topics. They are particularly useful when you require background information and related research on a topic, when you want to put your topic in context, identify key theories and key researchers in a subject area.

What books are not good at is in researching current topics as it can take years to write and publish books. So whilst they can give you a good overview of a research area it is important to bring the research up to date by consulting other sources such as journals and newspapers.

Books are available in print copies and many are available as e-Books. They are available in different ways and formats. To find out more, click on the link for E-books. 

Should I use Library Search or the Library Catalogue?

  • If you are looking for all types of available information on a topic use Library Search.
  • If you are looking for a specific book use the Library Catalogue.
  • If you are looking for a specific, full text journal article use Library Search.
  • To renew books and for other account based activities, log in to My Account on the Library Catalogue.
 Whether you use the Library Catalogue or Library Search, always consider the Refine your Search filters on the left hand side of the search pages. Clicking on one or more of the boxes will limit your results to items matching that filter and help you to find exactly what you are looking for.

Using Journals

A journal is a publication published on a regular basis (weekly, monthly, quarterly). Academic journals contain articles on current research, usually where the author of an article will have carried out some primary research. These are also called scholarly or peer-reviewed journals.

Other types of journal include magazines such as the Economist or New Scientist, published on a regular basis they report on current events and research but will not have carried out the research themselves. Trade journals are aimed at professionals in a particular discipline or industry. They report news and trends in a field, but not original research. It is often acceptable to use magazines and trade journals but assignments should not be based solely on popular literature.

Journals are particularly useful when you require current information as they are published quicker than books.

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