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How do I: Use Databases

This guide covers Information, Media, and Digital Literacy concepts and Digital Citizenship for Gr. 9-12 students, as well as teacher and parents.

Use Databases

Gr. 9-12: Games & Databases

What's Next?

Databases 101

 

A database is an organized electronic collection of information which frequently includes a range of publication types and information formats (e.g. video, print, & audio).  Academic databases, such as those found via the VLC, contain authoritative, reliable information published by university scholars, trade experts, and other leaders in their respective fields.   

Some databases only contain information pertaining to a specific subject area, whereas other databases are cross-disciplinary.

The information found in academic databases is typically not free, but requires an annual subscription to gain access. VLC database access is funded by the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) for all of its students, placing thousands of ebooks, videos, articles, and other forms of amazing research at your fingertips!

 

Here's How: 

A. Click on the 9-12 Zone in the website header

 

 

 

 

B. Select the Subject Guide for your class from one of the drop-down menus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

C.  Find the Suggested Databases box under any one of the pages of the Subject Guide and pick the one that best suits what you are researching

 

What is browsing and why would I want to browse?

Browsing is casually looking over the contents of something, in this case a database.  Browsing is a great way to get a general understanding of the topics within a subject area, or the formats of information that a database offers (e.g. audio, video, articles, etc.)  It is a good idea to browse a database before conducting an Advanced Search, so that you do not eliminate relevant results.  Browsing can help you to identify terms to include in your search, including keywords, publication names, etc..

 

How do I browse?

Databases enable users to browse in different ways, for example, by subject or by publication title.  Each database may present these options in a differently, dependent upon their platform. 

Here are some terms options to look for: 

Using the Advanced Search functions in a VLC database will help you to find the most relevant information available for your topic

Advanced Search functions typically allow you to specify the following in your search:

Follow the below steps to take advantage of the power of a database advanced search!


***Note: the Core Concepts Biology, Teen Health and Wellness, and Encyclopedia Britannica databases do not offer an Advanced Search.  However, Boolean Operators can still be used, just be sure to capitalize them.  See #1 below for more information.


Step #1:

 


Step #2:

 

 

 

Note: If you do not restrict your search to Full Text only, then your search results will include articles that appear to be blank (i.e there will be a citation and an abstract, but the full contents of the article may not be available).

Where to click:


Step #3:

Where these options are found:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Find more current results by restricting the publication date range in your search.

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