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Search Tips and Strategies

Youtube video: Mapping Your Research Ideas

YouTube video: Crafting a Savvy Search Strategy

Drawing showing multiple perspectives

1. Map out your research questions.

Turn your ideas for research projects into questions.

2. Craft a savvy search.

Generate a diverse set of keywords and take advantage of search filters to generate more effective article searches.

3. Seek out diverse perspectives on your topic.

Look for articles that address your research interests from multiple perspectives. Improve your search by using a variety of keywords and multiple databases.


The Library's online subscription resources can always be accessed from computers and wireless networks on campus. However, off-campus access is restricted to current UCLA, students, faculty, and staff who have set up their computer using one of the following methods.

Citation - A brief introduction

Formatted Files Formatted Files

1. Why cite?

Watch this quick video for an overview of why citation really matters.

2. Determine your citation style.

Check out the submission guidelines or assignment prompt to determine the proper citation style. When in doubt, ask a researcher in the field, the instructor, or a librarian for help.

3. Use a citation tool.

Check out ZoteroEndnote, or Mendeley to keep track of your articles and create citations. You can also use the citation tools in many databases. Check out our guide to citing sources for more information.


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Journal Article and Other Databases

  • Keywords: "social media" AND adults
  • Keywords: “object permanence” AND infancy

Note that some of these databases only index journal articles—they don't actually have the full text. Use the gold UC-eLinks button -  - to do an automated search to find the full text, or search for the journal title in the UCLA Library Catalog.


is your friend! This gold button will help you get the article. Here's what it will do:

  • Try to find the article online. If that doesn't work it will...
  • Provide you with a link to automatically search the UCLA Library Catalog for print copies. And if that doesn't work it will...
  • Provide you with a link to the interlibrary loan form, where you can request a copy from another library.

If the database you're using doesn't have UC-eLinks buttons, you can copy and paste the info into UC-eLinks Citation Linker.

About Interlibrary Loan

You don't need to know what library has the item you're looking for. The system will find a library for you and send a request for them to scan the article and e-mail it to you. It usually takes less than a week, sometimes less than a day. And it's free!