Databases are grouped into subject areas. The Policing, Security & Emergency Management collection will be useful for your study.
Also note the Key Journal Databases in the Emergency Management Library Resource Guide. Note that you don't have to use every database for every assignment - but nor should you restrict your search to one database only.
There are a number of techniques you can use while searching to get better and more relevant results.
Basic and advanced search
Basic search usually involves one search box, with a few options about searching a specific collection or field. This is great for general searching. When you have multiple keywords or complex search queries, using Advanced search can be helpful. This usually involves several different boxes for your different keywords, built-in search operators, and more options for field searching and limiters.
Most databases will have a link to Advanced Search next to their Basic search option. Advanced Search in Google Scholar is accessible from the menu.
Use these with your keywords to refine your searches and specify exactly what you want to find. These are most useful in journal databases and Primo Search. (Some of them won't work as well in Google Scholar.)
|Use AND to retrieve results that contain both of your search terms.||bushfire AND response|
|Use OR to retrieve results that contain any or all of your search terms.||emergency OR disaster|
|Using NOT to exclude irrelevant results.||emergency NOT hospital|
|Group terms or equivalent keywords with parentheses to create complex searches.||(flood OR "flash flood") AND management|
|Use quotation marks to search for a phrase||"incident control"|
|Search for terms with different word endings using an asterisk.||manag* = manage, managed, managing, management|
|A question mark can be used to replace a single letter within a word.||analy?e = analyse, analyze|
Field searching and limiters
Most databases will allow you to specify which field you want to search. Common fields include author, title, dates, and subject headings/topic, and these are usually available in both basic and advanced search.
Once you've searched, you can also limit your results by some of these fields. This is extremely useful if you want all of your articles to have been published within a certain date range, or for them all to be peer-reviewed. Look for these in the menus beside your search results.
Take a look at the videos below for a demonstration of search strategies and how to search within databases.
Sometimes you will read that a database is 'full text', or that an article can be found in 'full text'. 'Full text' means that the entire document is available online. When a database carries an article in full text there will be a hyperlink to view it as either a PDF or html document. Not all journal databases contain full text.
If an article is not available in full text you may be able to locate it in another database. Clicking on the button will allow you to check if the article is available elsewhere.