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Off-Campus Access to Databases
To access any database in this Research Guide from off campus, you will need your myMCC login. You may find your myMCC login at www.mchenry.edu/myMCC. Click on Password Reset/Find Username.
Using the Article Databases
Article Databases mostly contain articles from periodicals, including:
Journal Articles, which cover research and practice in a particular field or discipline. These articles are written by experts in the field and are a high quality source. Limit your search to just journal articles by checking the Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals option.
Magazine and Newspaper Articles, which are written more to the general public. They're not as high quality as journal articles and don't go through a rigorous peer review, but may still be appropriate depending on your topic. Use the Source Evaluation Rubric under the Evaluating Sources tab to evaluate these types of articles.
Some databases, especially those geared to a particular topic such as Literary Reference Center, contain periodical articles as well as articles from reference books.
Argumentative & Social Issues Papers
Starting Your Research
If your research assignment requires you to write about a current social or controversial issue, the following databases are a good place to start.
Viewpoints on all sides of controversial issues
A good starting point for in-depth, unbiased coverage of current issues in health, social trends, criminal justice, international affairs, education, the environment, technology, and the economy.
General Information Databases
For more general information, the following databases offer full-text articles covering a wide range of topics. Make sure to combine your terms with Boolean AND (to include all terms), or Boolean OR (to include any term).
Access to full-text articles from journals, magazines, and newspapers on a wide range of subject areas.
Academic Search Complete (EBSCO)
Large general database with articles from journals, magazines and newspapers on many topics.
Full-text, aggregated content covers every major subject from the world's best publishers of reference
Access to all of the EBSCO databases, covering a wide range of subject areas. Search within a single database, or cross-search multiple databases.
How to Search
The videos and other resources below will help you be a better database searcher!
Selecting and Using Keywords Video (3:50)
Quick Tips and Shortcuts for Database Searching (video 5:19)
How to Enter Your Keywords into a Database (video)
Online Databases: a definition
An organized collection of computer records having a standard format designed for efficient retrieval of information.
Advantages of Online Databases:
- Can access remotely
- Can limit results to full text of articles
- More time efficient
- Information is updated frequently
- More flexible and precise searching
- Access to more resources than could be physically located in the library
Literature Analysis Papers
If your research assignment requires you to write about literary criticism or literary themes, the following databases are a good place to start.
Gale Literary Sources
Single search that brings together all the content in Literature Resource Center, Literature Criticism Online, LitFinder, and select books from GVRL.
Literature Criticism Online
A good starting point specifically for literary criticism. A searchable database of the Gale series of literature reference e-books.
Literature Resource Center
A good starting point for any literary assignment. Access criticism, biographies, topic overviews and more.
Scholarly articles. Use your Boolean Operators (AND, OR) for best searching.
LitFinder is international in scope, covers all time periods, and contains literature content, including poems, short stories, novels, essays, speeches, plays, biographies, summaries, photographs, and more. Full-text is available in many cases.
Additional Databases & Research Guides
Depending on your topic, you may want to use databases beyond what is on this page and/or research guides other than the English guide. The following list can get your started.