Writing Resources

Writing tools, support, and tips.

All of the Things You Need

Save your time!  Use these search techniques:
  • Put quotation marks around PHRASES (two or more words), so that the words are searched together
    --- Example: "chicken pox"
  • Put an asterisk at the end of words, so that you get all of the word endings
    --- Example: high* = high, highs, higher, highest
  • Think of alternate spellings or synonyms
    --- "health care" OR healthcare -- it's used both ways. You should also add   OR "medical care"
  • Start by putting your search words in the TITLE. If you get nothing, you can take them out of the Title and move them to "Anywhere."
Suggested Places to Start

Articles on All Topics -- Academic Search Ultimate

  • While you're in Academic Search, you can also put a check next to any other EBSCO databases that you want to search

Research Guides -- There are a lot of these; scroll through the list just so you know what's there.

Current Affairs and News -- See the tab called "What's the News?"

Law, Policy, Political Science-- In CQ Researcher (Congressional Quarterly), you can browse topics; e.g., Transportation; or Environment, Climate, and Natural Resources.

  • Each topic has more specific subtopics; e.g., Transportation --> Public Transportation --> Aging Infrastructure

Databases for Earth and Environmental Sciences

  • GreenFile -- Covers "all aspects of human impact to the environment. Its collection of scholarly, government and general-interest titles includes content on the environmental effects of individuals, corporations, and local/national governments, and what can be done at each level to minimize these effects."
  • Gale in Context - Environmental Studies -- "Physical, social, and economic aspects of environmental issues. ...covering energy systems, health care, agriculture, climate change, population, and economic development." Start with Browse Topics (on the right)!

[TIP: In your Google Scholar or Google search, add   site:.gov  .  This will get ONLY results from the U.S. government plus a few states.]

JHU Info Sources such as the Hub

VERY Broad Search -- Google Scholar (only as last resort!)

  • In addition to the specialized databases listed above, some of your topics might benefit from a carefully focused Google Scholar search
  • Make sure to set the dates, UN-check Patents and Citations, use phrases instead of single words, and always make sure you can see FIND IT links
News items can tell you the most recent information, and also provide the names of information sources about your topics.

Use journal articles to get:

  • a narrow or specific part of your topic
  • up-to-date information

1. Library home page --> Databases

2.  Click "Browse list of databases"

Library home page, databases link


3. Choose a subject to see the databases with information about it.


4. In each list, start with the databases under CORE -- they are the best and most relevant 

  • For a description about the database's topics, click "More Info" next to the database name:



For the best ways to use Google Scholar, see the Google Scholar page on this guide.

How To Cite Sources
Citation Managers -- These let you export citations FROM databases INTO the manager, so that you can put them into separate folders, and bring out a bibliography in whatever style you want

Example of using folders to help you organize your final report:

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