Skip to main content

Intensive American Language Center (IALC): Level 5 Research Assignment

This guide will help you to conduct research on themes this semester of World/Public Health, Climate Change, and Immigration.

Research Databases

A database is like a "bank" - but instead of money, it contains "good information." The sources found in databases are chosen by EXPERTS in the field. This helps you to guarantee that the sources you find are good sources, saving you time and frustration. It brings together many different sources from many different places and allows you to search across sources on a certain topic.

Searching in a database is similar to searching on the Internet. You will use a "search box" to type in your keywords, and you will get a list of results. These results each come from other sources - so, for example, the source does not come from "Academic Search Complete" - rather, you found the article from another resources (Washington Post, New York Times).

Below are some databases that will useful to your research. To login, (when you are asked for an ID and password), enter your NetworkID (firstname.lastname) and password that you use for your email:

Refine Your Results!

Almost all databases you use will have a way to "refine" or narrow your results to only show those of a certain format (magazine, newspaper, book), year, geographical area, and more. Look on the side bar of the results - that is normally where you will find it.

Here is an example from Academic Search Complete. Notice that Magazines and Newspapers are selected. You will access the text of the article by clicking on either PDF Full Text or HTML Full Text. If you do not see this option, you can also click on Find It @ WSU to be taken to a record that will lead you to the article:

Ebsco Academic Search Complete. Home screen of the database with search boxes. Search boxes contain the phrase "government control" and are emphasized with a red border. Refine results column is on the left side with magazines and newspapers selected, with a red border surrounding the column. List of article results underneath the top search box with the PDF Full Text link under the second result surrounded by a red border.

WSU Libraries, PO Box 645610, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-5610, 509-335-9671, Contact Us