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  • Finding articles

    Start with Keywords

    All research begins with the language that you use to think about your topic. This language provides keywords, or the natural language you use to describe your research topic. Start your search by developing a simple concept map of your topic using keywords to begin your search for articles in the databases below.  

    Here is a sample keyword concept map to begin research on Italian Renaissance portraits:

    Concept of place or time Concept of material/technique Concept of subject
    16th century portraits nobility
    Renaissance oil painting peasants
    Italian   patronage

    Recommended Databases

    Film Still

    Film still from Pandora's Box

    Film still from Pandora's Box, directed by G.W. Pabst, 1928. Image courtesy of ARTstor.

    Off-Campus Access

    Thomas Nelson Library's online resources are accessible to currently enrolled students and faculty and staff of Thomas Nelson. 

    To access these resources from off-campus, you'll be required to login with your VCCS username and password.

    Learn more about accessing Thomas Nelson library databases from off-campus.

    What is a Library Database?

    What is a library database?

    A library database is an online resource that the library subscribes to that contains articles and information from print sources such as magazines, newspapers, journals, and reference books. 

    Most of our databases are article databases. 

    An article database enables you to search through thousands (sometimes millions) of different magazines, journals and newspapers to find articles on a particular topic. Some of the articles you will find are Full Text, which means you can read (or print out) the entire article right there online. Other times the database will only provide you with an abstract, or summary of the article. Other times, the database will only give you a citation, which tells you where you can find a print version of the article.

    Databases are not "internet" sources

    Although you access our databases from the internet, the articles you find in them are reprinted from real live print sources. Most of the things you find in our database cannot be found by searching Google or Wikipedia. These are subscription services that the library pays for. They are every bit a part of our library's collection as the books on our shelf, and unless you want to buy your own subscription, you must go through the library's website to access them.