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Key databases for communication research in scholarly journals and trade publications

Communication research is dispersed among many disciplines, so you will need to consult more than one database. The databases listed below are good places to start your search for journal articles on your topic.  

Historical communication research

These non-electronic resources provide brief summaries of articles and can help you locate relevant articles.  The call number will indicate where you would go in the library to locate these materials.     

Key databases for health communication

Multi-discipline databases

Databases for related discplines

Tips for searching communication topics

Following these tips will help you save time, improve accuracy, and meet requirements of your course.

1.  Use the heading or thesaurus tool to identify appropriate terms (MeSH 2013, CINAHL Headings, Thesaurus).  Disciplines may use different terms for the same concept.  For example, the phrase:

  • interpersonal relations is used in Communication & Mass Media Complete, MEDLINE and CINAHL
  • interpersonal relationship is used in PsycINFO

Check for broader, narrower or related terms.

2.  Create an EBSCO account to store citations as you conduct your search.

To set up a personal account:

  • Use the Sign In link in the top toolbar of the screen.
  • From the Sign In Screen, select the Create a new Account link.
  • The Create a New Account Screen appears with Personal Account entered in the Account Type field. Fill in the fields on the Create a New Account Screen. When you have completed the fields, Save Changes.
  • If all the information was accepted, a message appears that provides your user name and password. Click OK. You will be automatically logged in as a personal user. You should note the user name and password you created so you can log in at a future session.

To save items to your My EBSCOhost Folder:

  • Sign in to your My EBSCOhost account.
  • Search for the information that you want to save in your folder. You can save all types of search results to your folder. (For example, articles, links to searches, images, etc.)
  • Add the items to your folder in any of the following ways:
    • Add one item – Use the Add to folder link located next to the relevancy bar at the bottom of the article result. This adds only the single selected item to your folder. If you have custom folders in your account, select a folder to add the article to.
    • Add all the items on the page – Click the Results (1–10) link at the top of the page. This adds all items listed on the page to your folder.
  • When the article result is added to the folder, the Add to folder link will change to read Remove from folder. Clicking this link will remove the result from your folder.
  • Use the Choose Databases link to move between databases.

3.  Set your Google Scholar preferences to display SDSU links.

  1. From the Google Scholar home page, click on the menu icon Menu icon
  2. Click on Settings
  3.  Select Library Links from the left navigation bar.
  4. Enter SDSU and click Save.  Make sure you select the correct SDSU—not South Dakota State University.

Results in Google Scholar will show up with a link Find it at SDSU; click on this link to see if the item is available at SDSU.