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Articles & Research : Articles & Research Help

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Articles & Research Help

How do I find journal, magazine or newspaper articles online?
Use article search (found on the home page or Articles & Research page) to find journal, newspaper, magazine and encyclopedia articles included in the Library's databases and online resources.

To learn how to use article search:
Watch our video(Opens a new window)

Follow these steps:

  1. From the Library's home page, select the circle next to "Articles."
  2. Enter words describing what you are looking for (such as: healthcare reform) and then, select "Find."
  3. Enter your Library card number and PIN if prompted.
  4. You will see a list of articles with your search terms. They are grouped under the database they were found in. Scroll down to see all of your search results.
  5. Select the "View" button to look at a specific article.
  6. End of list

Can I find articles from home?
Yes, you can find articles 24 hours a day from any computer with Internet access. You will need the number of your Library card issued by The Seattle Public Library (found on the back of your Library card) and your 4-digit PIN. If you have questions about your Library card number or PIN, please Ask a Librarian.

Can I find the entire article?
In many cases, you will be able to see the "full text" of the article, which is usually the article as it appeared word for word in the print version of the magazine, newspaper, or reference book.

Sometimes, you will only see the citation, which is a brief description of the article that includes the title, author, and publication date.

If you only see the citation of the article, you can still get the full text

  • Select "Search for Article" to see if the article is available in a database.
  • Submit a Photocopy Request Form and the Library will email or fax a copy of the article to you.

What journals, magazines and newspapers are available online?
The Library has thousands of local and international journals, magazines and newspapers, as well as encyclopedias and other information, available online. For a complete list, you can View Online Journals A-Z.

How do I find a specific article?

  1. Select View Online Journals A-Z (on the Articles & Research page) to search by title or browse titles by subject.
  2. Type in the title of the magazine or publication and select "Search."
  3. If the title is available online through the Library, you will see available dates for the publication and the corresponding databases in which you can find the title.
  4. Select the name of the database that includes the date of the title you are looking for.
  5. Now you can search for the article within that title or you can browse through a specific issue by selecting the listed publication dates.

Are there other search options?
Use Advanced Search to search by title, author, subject, date or to choose a specific category or online resource to search. Advanced Search can be found by selecting the link below the search box on the Articles & Research page.

On the Advanced Search page, you can:

  • Enter search criteria: Use the drop down menu to select a search option such as keyword, title, author, abstract or subject.
  • Publication date: Select "Year range" and enter a beginning and ending date to search for articles within those years.
  • Full text: Check the box next to "Full text articles only" to limit your results to complete articles.
  • Select category: You will get better results if you select a specific category. Looking for reviews on laptops? Type "laptops" in the box next to "Keyword," select the category "Consumer Reports & Product Reviews," then select "Search."
  • List of resources: Scroll down to see all the online resources or databases available to search. Use the checkboxes found to the left to select one or more resources or choose them all by selecting the box next to "Select/Deselect all."

What if I am having trouble connecting to an online resource or database?
Here are some tips to help:

  • Cookies must be enabled in your browser.
  • Make sure you correctly entered your Library card number. (Enter all numbers including zeros.)
  • The firewall installed on your computer - either in the browser, the operating system or the security software - may block access to the Library's online resources or databases. You may have to temporarily disable your firewall in order to use these online resources. Be sure to re-enable your firewall as soon as you have accessed the online resource or database.
  • Try emptying your browser's cache or quit then restart your browser.
  • Still can't connect? Ask a Librarian for help using any of the Library's online services.

How does the Library select its recommended Web sites?
Databases and Web Sites includes links to external Web sites that offer resources that reflect the interests of Library users.

There are key questions always considered before the Library recommends a particular resource:

  • Is there a local emphasis?
  • Is it unique?
  • Who provides the information, and are they qualified to do so?
  • Is it current and regularly maintained?
  • Is it easy to use?
  • Is it quick loading?
  • Is it reliable?
  • Does it charge for access or require registration?

Providing links to resources on the Web does not mean The Seattle Public Library endorses the information provided. For more about this, see the Library policy on Public Use of the Internet.

Additional questions?
We would be happy to help you. Please Ask a Librarian.

Ask a Librarian