Section 3: How Do I Search?

Because the library provides information in a varitey of formats (not just PDFs of full-text articles), finding your source/s is often the final step of the search process. When you’re ready to get your hands (or eyes) on your sources, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is it?

Books, articles, dvds, etc. are all found in different ways. Most books will be found on a shelf, whereas most articles are found online. Knowing what your item is will help you find it.

  • Does AU Library own it / own access to it?

AU Library is part of a library consortium (the WRLC). This means that if we don’t have a book, but Georgetown does, you may borrow their copy (it will even be delivered here for you to pick up). If we don’t have access to an article, one of the consortium libraries will send you a PDF. This means that before you try finding a book on the shelves here at AU, you should make sure that we actually have a copy in the building.

  • Find out if you are on the right track

  • Click on the title to any items that look promising,
  • then: read the abstract; read the list of subjects to see if you can be using different keywords; click on any subject link to see other articles similar to the one you’re viewing.

  • Save

  • Email or download any items that you want to keep
  • Write down / type up a list of the keywords that you used in your search–save time later by keeping track of work you have already done.