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User's Guide to EBSCOhost

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The McKillop Library has added EBSCOhost’s Academic Search Premier as our comprehensive database resource providing access to articles. Academic Search Premier is the world's largest scholarly, multi-discipline, full text database designed specifically for academic institutions. With the most valuable and most numerous collection of peer-reviewed, full text journals, Academic Search Premier offers critical information from many sources found in no other database. This resource contains full text for nearly 3,200 scholarly publications. Academic Search Premier includes full-page images as well as color embedded images. This scholarly collection provides full text journal coverage for nearly all academic areas of study - including social sciences, humanities, education, computer sciences, engineering, language and linguistics, arts & literature, medical sciences, and ethnic studies.

Academic Search Premier is accessible at all computers in the McKillop Library. It may also be accessed on- or off-campus from the library homepage (http://library.salve.edu/) under Databases. For off-campus access you must set your computer's browser for Proxy Services. See Off-Campus Access on the library homepage or call the Reference desk at (401)341-2289 if you need assistance.


To choose Academic Search Premier from the McKillop Library, click on the EBSCOhost platform and then link to Academic Search Premier by clicking on the title. Although there are other databases available through EBSCOhost, each one should be searched individually for optimal results.

Looking for an article from a scholarly journal? - Once you’ve chosen Academic Search Premier, at the bottom of the Search screen you may choose to limit your search to Peer Reviewed journals. If your assignment is to find an article in a scholarly journal, limiting your search to Peer Reviewed journals will ensure that your results will meet your professor's requirement. Peer review is a rigorous process in which an article that is submitted for publication to a professional journal is reviewed by an editorial board or by individuals who are scholars in the field. Content is scrutinized and revisions are often suggested to guarantee that the final published article meets the standards of the journal.


A Basic Search is performed by entering one or more keywords or phrases related to your topic, separating each with the word “and”. Place quotations around phrases, that is longer than two words.
Examples: technology
  technology AND economy
  world economy
  “world economic conditions”
  stephen hawking AND technology

Use the asterisk (*) to search for words containing a common word root, with any number or combination of characters following the root.
For example: operat* will find articles containing operations, operational, and operator.

Use the question mark (?) to search for a specific number of characters, in any combination. Use one ? for each character that you are unsure of.
For example: wom?n will find articles containing woman or women.
  Educat?? will find articles containing educated and educator.

By checking off on a box below your search window, you can either limit or expand your search. To limit, choose one of the following:

  • Full Text – Click to limit results to articles with Full Text.

  • Journal/Magazine – Enter a journal/magazine name in this field to limit results to articles only from that title.

  • Peer Reviewed – Limits search results to articles from peer-reviewed journals. Peer-reviewed journals are publications that include only those articles that have been reviewed and/or qualified by a selected panel of acknowledged experts in the field of study covered by the journal.

  • Date Published – Click to limit results to articles with Full Text.Use this option to search for articles within a specified date range. Create a range by using the drop-down lists to specify the months of the range and enter the last two digits of the year in the entry fields to specify the years of the range.

To expand your search choose either:

  • Also Search for related words – Click this option to expand results to include the synonyms and plurals of your term(s).

  • Search within full text articles – Click this option to search for your keywords within the full text of articles, as well as abstract and citation information. This applies only to words not qualified by a field code.

Guided Search and Expert Search provide help in constructing a precise search. These options give you more control by allowing you to limit to specific search fields and date ranges. You may also combine search word and phrases by selecting the appropriate search operator from the drop-down menu. It also gives you the option to limit or expand your search with additional options.


Subject Search - The file is indexed according to the following categories:

  • All - This category is selected by default, and when you use it, all of the information in the file is searched and an alphabetical list of results is returned. If you select All and choose Relevancy Ranked, the list of results returned is not alphabetically sorted, but ranked according to the frequency of the appearance of your search term in the subjects listed.
  • People - Select this category to search for the proper names of people. The format for this search is last name, first name. If you search for a name without selecting this category, and without using this format, the search is treated like a simple keyword search.
  • Products and Books - Use this category to search for products or books.
  • Companies - This category is used to search your database(s) for a company's name or line of business. For example, you can search for EBSCO Publishing or electronic publishers.
  • Subjects - When you select this category, all of the information in the authority file is searched, and a list of results is returned that is relevancy ranked according to subject. To browse the Subject Authority File:
    1. From the Main Toolbar, click the Subject Search icon. The Subject Authority File appears. Select a category to search.
    2. Enter your search terms, for example archaeology, in the For field. To search for a person's name, use the following format: last name, first name.
    3. Click Alphabetical (when available) to list your search results in alphabetical order.
    4. Click Relevancy Ranked to list your search results according to relevance.
    5. Click Browse to view your term(s) as they appear in the Subject Authority File.
      • References for the term you are searching may be sorted by type. (For example: newspaper references, periodical references, or review references.)
      • The Result List appears, letting you view specific results. There may also be a hierarchy of subdivisions relating to your search.
    6. Click any of the available links to open a result list, or click See also related items to further narrow your search.
    7. Click Refine Search to modify the search; or click New Search to begin again.

Journal Search - You can also search by publication name or browse through a journal list presented in alphabetical order. This option is at the top of the screen under Journal Search. You may enter the complete title, or just a word within the title, in the basic search field. By choosing alphabetical listing, Academic Search Premier will display the journal’s that begin with your keyword search. If you choose relevancy rank, Academic Search Premier will display all the journals that best match your search terms. Click the publication that you want and Academic Search Premier displays a brief summary including available dates.

Company Directory - First, enter your search criteria in one or more of the following fields:

  • Company Name - The primary name of the company. Two Company Name fields are available for searching: the company's proper name, and the "trade style" or secondary name (if used).
  • Address - An entry on this line searches the street address and city. The street address is the physical location of the company.
  • City - An entry on this line searches only the city field
  • State - The state field for all records is the two-letter state abbreviation.
  • ZIP Code - The ZIP Code field contains up to a nine-digit ZIP Code. The following are examples of ZIP Code searches:

    • 01938 - Returns any record where 01938 appear as the entire ZIP Code or the first five digits.
    • 01938-1476 - Returns any record where the ZIP Code exactly matches your entry.
    • 019381476 - Returns the message "No Hits." (The hyphen must be included in the search.)

  • Line of Business - The line of business field provides a brief description of the business. Some of the words are abbreviated (For example: Manufacturer [Mfg], Retail [Ret], and Wholesale [Whol]). Keywords are generally not abbreviated. Truncation should be used to capture plurals when searching this field.
  • Country - To search within a specific country, enter the country name.
  • Continent - To search within a specific continent, select a continent from the drop-down list.
  • Sales Range - To search on sales range, select from the drop-down list. There is no option below $1,000,000 because the file contains only companies with over $1,000,000 in sales.
  • Employee Range - To search on employee range, select from the drop-down menu.
  • Headquarters - Mark the Headquarters checkbox to limit your search to company headquarters.
  • Limit to U.S. companies only - Mark the checkbox to limit your search to only companies located in the United States.

Then, click Search after entering your search terms; or click Clear to enter new terms. You can also use the Search All field to search for a word or name in all the fields listed in step 1.

Click one of the following:

  • Match Any - Mark this option to match any of your search terms in any of the above fields.
  • Match All - Mark this option to match all of your terms in any of the above fields.
  • Match Exact - Mark this option to search all of the above fields for a match of your search terms in the order in which you enter them.

Image Collections - The EBSCOhost Image Collections contain photographs and other images licensed from a variety of sources. Some images are of people, some of places or objects, and include photographs, maps and flags. You can focus your image search by using the categories available on the Search Window:

  • Photos of People
  • Natural Science Photos
  • Photos of Places
  • Historical Photos
  • Maps
  • Flags

You can select more than one of these categories (for example: Maps and Flags). When no specific category is selected, all categories are searched. The images that you access on EBSCOhost can be saved or printed using your browser's Save and Print functions.


When Academic Search Premier performs a search, a Result List opens. This is the information retrieved from the databases that are searched. Search results can be citations, document summaries or abstracts, and can include links to full text.

At the bottom of each citation are a series of icons representing the graphical formats in which the article can be displayed.

  • Full Text - In which the original graphics may be inserted into the full text.
  • Full Page Image - Which is a scanned page of the article as it was originally published. It will be necessary to have the computer program Adobe Acrobat Reader available on your computer to view an article in this format
  • XML Full Text version of the article (if available) - The article appears with formatting more like an actual journal article, and the links within the article are activated. If a table of contents is available, it is displayed, and the contents link to the corresponding sections of the article.

To view the full record for an article, click on the highlighted title of the article or on a format icon. The full record contains the complete citation to the article as well as the abstract and the full text (if available). Your search words will be bold. On top of the screen are navigation tools to take you through the list of articles and a link to refine your search if you are unsuccessful.


Once you have found a useful article, you may e-mail yourself the citation, abstract, and full text of the article (if available). Or, select Print Article to reformat the article and then print it or save it to a disk using your browser.
Caution: Printing an article from the Page Image format must be done using the print function in the Adobe Acrobat program. Attempting to use the print function of your browser (Netscape Navigator or Internet Explore) may disconnect you from the database and your search will be lost. It is suggested that you print from the Full Text format rather than the Page Image format.

You may mark articles either from the full record or from the Results List. After you mark the articles you want, select Marked List to re-display them. The Marked List allows you to e-mail or print the marked articles in a batch.


Within the EBSCOhost platform there are additional databases to search.

  • Alt-health Watch
  • Business Source Elite
  • CINAHL w/Headings
  • CSA – Life Sciences Collection 1982 – Current
  • Econlit
  • ERIC
  • MagillOn Literature
  • PsycINFO 1887 – Current
  • Sociological Abstracts
  • World History FullTEXT
  • Books in Print

Entering the EBSCOhost platform, each database has a brief description so you may choose the best option. Link to each one individually for optimal search results. Searching these databases you can use a similar strategy as with Academic Search Premier, although you may find additional ways to limit or expand your search. Although each database is rich with information, for general searches and the most expansive collection begin with Academic Search Premier.

Created: 10-01 /cm

Ask at the Reference Desk, call (401) 341-2289, or submit a question online if you need assistance.

Send comments or questions to Olga Verbeek, Library Webmaster, at verbeeko@salve.edu.
Revised: November, 2001