Skip to main content

We are here to help

Contact Us

AAE 780 Research Colloquium (Spring 2021) : Searching the Literature

Using Google Scholar

Google Scholar is Google's search engine for finding articles from a variety of source providers--publishers, professional societies, institutional repositories. While there may be some GS full-text, save Scholar preferences to access our Libraries' subscriptions. If following our library link to GS, above, no setting will be necessary.

From off-campus and entering GS directly (, then set your library link preference:

  • Select Scholar Preferences.
  • Search for the name of your library in the Library Links section (for example, enter UW Madison).
  • Check boxes for your campus library system and Open WorldCat “Library Search”.
  • Click Save Preferences in order to generate an active "Find It at UW-Madison" link.

Selecting and Searching Databases by Subject or Type


You can access databases from the library home page ( Use the dropdown menu at the Catalog button to navigate to Databases

There are several ways to browse and to select databases: 

1) Search by the title of the database (for example, 'EconLit').

2) Use the Browse by Subject/Type page to discover databases that index literature on your research topic.

3) Visit the Top 10 Databases page to quickly access a selection of popularly-used databases. 


Consider the databases listed, below, for conducting your search of the research literature.

Getting to Full Text

Follow    (Find It button) or the "Find It at UW Madison" link in most databases to:

  • access online full text (when available)
  • see if the journal is available in print (Library Catalog)
  • request a copy of the article (PDF) if full text is not available online (Request a Copy link)

If you already have a citation, use this Citation Search to search for your article.

Searching Tips for Online Databases

  • Use AND to combine search terms; retrieve records with those terms, in any order: friends AND communication
  • Use OR to combine similar search terms or synonyms: friends OR peers
  • Use quotation marks ( " ") to search a required phrase: "interpersonal communication"
  • Use an asterisk ( * ) to retrieve singular and plural forms or suffixes for search terns: friend* = friend, friends, friendly or friendship
  • Review "subject headings" or "descriptors" to identify additional and useful search terms.
  • Apply limits or filters to your results (by date, document type, or other).