COM LIT R1B: Language of Technology: Reading New Media through Literature

IT and New Media databases

For more possibilities, look at the Media Studies databases.

Searching Library Catalogs

oskicat logo Use OskiCat to locate materials related to your topic, including books, government publications, and  audio and video recordings, in the libraries of UC Berkeley. OskiCat will show you the location and availability of the items that we own.

melvyl logo

Use Melvyl to locate materials related to your topic located at other campuses in the UC system, or worldwide. You can use the Request button to request an item from another library, if we don't own it.

  • Using Melvyl (but not OskiCat) you can find articles as well as books, easily format a citation for copying into a bibliography, and see images of book covers, when available. Melvyl will also show you the location and availablity of items that we own.

Melvyl has changed as of January 2012, and now includes many more articles.  Detailed Melvyl help

Google Scholar

Google Scholar is an easy way to do interdisciplinary research, and with some settings changes can become even more useful.  You need a Google account to use these features.

  • Set up a Google Scholar Alert to be automatically notified when new articles are added to Google on topics of interest: 

Do your search in Google Scholar. Look in the left sidebar for the Create Alert link next to the envelope icon, and click it.  New items will be sent to your email account as they are found by Google.

  • Make Google display links to full text of articles that Berkeley subscribes to:

Open Scholar.  Click on the gear icon gear icon in the upper right corner, and choose 'scholar preferences'. In the next screen, choose Library Links from the left-hand menu. In the search box, type the word Berkeley.  Choose University of California, Berkeley - UC-eLinks, and Open Worldcat Search.

Do a Google Scholar search. Click on the "Cited by" link under a citation and select the "Search within articles citing..." checkbox.

Databases To Start

You have access to hundreds of databases in specific disciplines.  Here are a few that work for almost any topic.

  • Academic Search Complete
    A multidisciplinary index to articles in more than 10,900 journals and other publications in English, Spanish, German, French, Italian and Portuguese; full-text is available for over 5300 journals.
  • JSTOR
    Includes millions of articles in over 1000 scholarly journals, but NOT the most recent 3-5 years of any of them.
  • ProQuest Social Sciences
    An interdisciplinary metasearch through core indexes in the social sciences including Worldwide Political Science Abstracts, International Bibliography of the Social Sciences (IBSS), Linguistics and Language Behavior Abstracts, Sociological Abstracts, PsycInfo, PAIS, and more.

Where's the PDF?

Many article databases contain information about articles (citations or abstracts), not the entire text of the article.  Once you've used an article database to find articles on your topic, you may need to use this button:uc-eLinks button in order to locate and read the full text of the article. The UC-eLinks button appears in nearly all the databases available from the UCB Library website.

UC-eLinks will link you to the online full text of an article if UCB has paid for online access; otherwise, UC-eLinks will help you locate a print copy on the shelf in the library. If UCB doesn't own the article in print or online format, UC-eLinks can also help you order a copy from another library.

For more information, watch this video tutorial (about 4 min.)

You can also set up UC-eLinks to work with Google Scholar.  For more information, watch this 40-second demo.

Build and refine your search

Library catalogs and article databases offer several ways to narrow or broaden, or otherwise control your search.  Below are common methods; if they don't work, look for a "Help" link!

Most default to a quick keyword search (somewhat like Google) that assumes you want items containing all the words you type.

Example:
passions shakespeare

Most let you truncate a word with a wildcard symbol (usually * ) to get plurals and other variant forms.

Example: 
passion*
gets passion, passions, passionate

Most offer an Advanced Search with more options, such as searching on an author's name, or words in a title.

REFINING YOUR SEARCH
If your search retrieves too many items, use more specific terms, or put in additional keywords.

Example: 
eros shakespeare

gets fewer items than love shakespeare

Example: 
love poetry shakespeare

gets fewer items than love shakespeare

If your search gets too few items, use more general terms or remove some keywords.

You can also combine terms with OR to get more items.

Example: 
love OR eros
gets items containing either term.

FINDING RELATED ITEMS
In library catalogs and most article databases, click on the title of an interesting item and look in the detailed display for links (blue underlined text).  These may include the author's name, "Subjects" or "Subject headings".  Clicking on one of these links will do a search for items tagged the same way.

MANAGING RESULTS
Many catalogs and databases allow you to save items to a list/folder/etc. and e-mail, print or download the citation.  Some will allow you to output citations in a particular citation style (ex:  MLA or Chicago).

Last Update: December 20, 2012 12:06