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How Do I Find Articles in EBSCO?

This guide contains resources to assist you in utilizing EBSCOhost journal databases.

What are Subject Terms/Subject Headings?

Many, but not all, of the EBSCO databases provide a link to Subject Terms or Thesaurus in the top menu bar.  Subject Terms are used by EBSCO and derived from Library of Congress Subject Headings.  Thesaurus, on the other hand, is a list of subject headings created for a subject specific database such as ERIC, PsycINFO, or MLA.  Subject Terms and Thesaurus are very useful tools for finding the words used to describe your topic in a particular database and improving your search results.

After locating a subject heading, lick on the heading to view additional information about the subject and how it is defined and used in a specific database.

For example, here is the additional information about the term Human Trafficking in PsycINFO and Academic Search.

Subject Heading in PsycINFO: Check the definition to see if it's useful to your research.  Each page about a term also tells you when the term was first used to index records in this database.  There's a list of related terms underneath to give you suggestions. You can search for one by clicking the link, or use the checkboxes to combine one term with another and narrow your search.

Subject Term in Academic Search: This page also gives a definition, followed by headings for broader terms, narrower terms, and related terms such as laws that may deal with the subject. Click any of them to begin a new search.  You can also combine terms in a new search.

Using Subject Terms/Thesaurus

Select Subject Terms or Thesaurus in the blue menu bar at the top of the EBSCOhost screen.

In one database, Subject Terms is between Publications and Cited References.

In another database, Thesaurus is after New Search and before Cited References.

Once you are in the Thesaurus, type your subject into the Browse bar, select a type of browse from the choices of Term Begins With, Term Contains, and Relevancy Ranked underneath, then click Browse.

Term Begin With is an alphabetical search of all included subjects.

Term Contains locates entered terms anywhere in the included subjects.

Relevancy Ranked returns a list of subjects which most closely match the entered terms by subject.  Relevancy Ranked tends to produce the best results.

For example,

If you browse the term "trafficking" with Relevancy Ranked selected, you will see a list of official subject terms for the topic.  These include "DRUG traffic, CHILD trafficking, CHILD trafficking victims, ORGAN trafficking, HUMAN trafficking, ILLEGAL arms transfers, HUMAN trafficking -- Law & legislation, ILLEGAL logging," and so on.  Click in the box next to a term to select it and then click Add to place the term in the search box.  Multiple headings may be combined with the options OR or AND.