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Introduction to database searching

If you are searching for a topic or subject rather than a specific article you might like to search one of our databases. These often focus on a particular subject area or discipline and reduce the amount of results you receive from irrelevant subjects.

Databases are collections of resources such as journal articles and conference papers, and also sometimes book chapters and reports. If you are doing a literature search or systematic review they are a key resource to use.

There are two main kinds of database:

  • Bibliographic - they won't show you the full paper straight away, but you can often read an abstract and see the author details. You'll need to check with SFX if King's has access to the journal article
  • Full text - will let you open and read the article directly from the list of results

Getting the full text

If a database lists something you want to read but does not provide the full text look for a button that says 'SFX@King's' Image of SFX button. SFX will look up the article you have clicked to check if King's subscribes to its journal. 

King's doesn't subscribe:

Submit an Inter Library Loan for the item. Learn how to submit an Inter Library Loan in the Getting Started With the Library section of KLaSS:

I can't see the SFX button

If the SFX button is not available then you should use Library Search to see if the article or book is available through another database.

New to using Library Search?

You can find online tutorials on using Library Search to find books and journals around your subject. Find them in the Getting Started With the Library section of KLaSS:

Searching for Business, Law, and Politics topics

Below are a small selection of databases for getting started with Politics topics. For a more complete list of databases, visit the A-Z list of databases for Politics:

New to using online databases?

Complete interactive tutorials on literature searching and earn badges in the Finding Academic Material for Law and Arts & Sciences Topics modules of KLaSS:

Below are a small selection of databases for getting started with Legal topics. For a more complete list of databases, visit the A-Z list of databases for Law:

New to using online databases?

Complete interactive tutorials on literature searching and earn badges in the Finding and Evaluating Information section of KLaSS:

Below are a small selection of databases for getting started with Politics topics. For a more complete list of databases, visit the A-Z list of databases for Politics:

New to using online databases?

Complete interactive tutorials on literature searching and earn badges in the Finding and Evaluating Information section of KLaSS:

Westlaw and Lexis Peer-to-Peer Training Sessions

Westlaw Student Representative

Details coming soon!

LexisNexis Student Representative

India Hartstonge is this year's LexisNexis Student Associate for King's College London. India will be running a series of virtual group and one-on-one training sessions for students where you will enhance your research skills and learn to master this legal database.