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Database Help: Introduction - What and Where?

Introduction - What is a database?

A Library database is an organised collection of records or items that you can search and browse using a computer or device. Some databases are subject-specific, while others cover a range of subjects.

Databases are mainly used for journals and articles, but can contain items of all different types:

  • scholarly journals and articles; trade journals; newspapers articles
  • eBooks
  • theses and dissertations
  • videos
  • images
  • company records.

In journal databases, each record contains information which summarises the journal or article.

Journal article records include the author, DOI, cited references and links to PDF Full text and CSU libary

Many databases contain the full-text of the items as well. Most databases will have the full-text for some items, but not for others. Some databases are entirely full-text; others have none at all.

You can browse a database for relevant material but you can also search using keywords and key phrases. Databases generally have quite sophisticated search functions. See Searching in a Database.

Many databases are available to you via one of four important database platforms. See Databases and Database Platforms.

Where to find databases

  • There is also a link in Primo Search. Look for the DATABASES tab in the line of tabs at the top of screen.
  • There are lists of relevant databases in many of the Library Guides.

The A-Z Databases page

The A-Z Databases page is the main place to find and access databases.

You can:

  • locate a database by its title from an alphabetical list
  • choose from the Subject drop-down menu
  • find databases of a particular type, eg. Video collections; News & Current Affairs

A-Z databases landing page

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