Answered By: Lynn VanLeer
Last Updated: Jan 17, 2019     Views: 6189

Here are some common reasons you would get no or very few articles with a database search:

You have mistyped at least one keyword.

  • Databases do not auto-correct misspellings or typos.
  • Also consider British and American spellings.


You're not searching in a database that fits your topic.

  • Databases specialize in specific subject areas such as nursing, education or business.  
  • Think about where else your topic might be covered. 

Learn how to pick relevant databases.


You have typed too many words in the search boxes.

  • Start with one general term. 
  • Type just one concept per search box.
  • Add one concept at a time to narrow the search.
  • Avoid long phrases; do not type your entire question in one box.

Learn how to select and use keywords 

Learn how to set up a database search


You need to try different keywords.

  • Brainstorm synonyms or try searching with new keywords to describe your topic.

Learn how to brainstorm similar or opposite terms.




Video: How to find more results

Video: Keyword Searching

(1 min 21 sec) Transcript 


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