F&M College Library

The Research Process


Search DISCOVER for books, ebooks, movies, articles, journals, and more. 

If you find a physical item in the collection that you would like to use be sure to note:

  • the availability: if it is checked out try EZ Borrow or Interlibrary Loan
  • the Library: is it in Shad or Martin?
  • the title: for example - Architecture and Landscape of the Pennsylvania Germans, 1720-1920
  • the call number: for example - NA730 .P4 A73 2011

Search Tips

  • Remember that you need to use keywords to search library resources, not natural language. 
  • Think about various different terms that are or could be used to describe your topic, including synonyms. 
  • Use "quotes" around multiple terms that you'd like to use as a phrase.
  • For example:
    • "natural environment" AND business
    • "feminist theory" OR feminism
Boolean Operators
  • AND, OR, NOT are used between your keywords to broaden or narrow your search. 
  • AND will search for both terms. 
  • OR will search for either one term or the other, but not both. 
  • NOT will search for one term but not the other.
  • For example:
    • business AND ("natural environment" OR sustainability) 
    • "feminist theory" NOT economy
Subject Headings/Terms
  • Subject Headings/Terms are controlled phrases assigned to library materials to organize them. 
  • Use Subject Headings/Terms to find similar items when searching the library catalog and databases.
  • For example:
    • Sustainable development
    • Business enterprises -- environmental aspects
    • SOCIAL SCIENCE Feminism & Feminist Theory 
  • Many databases provide ways for you to limit your search results.
  • If your initial search is too large, consider limiting by date, type of publication, subject, etc. 

Recommended Databases

Need help?

Feeling overwhelmed and don't know where to start?

Want a second opinion on your research topic? 

Meet with a librarian

Want specialized help for your subject? Find & contact your liaison librarian. 

Recommended Guides

For guides in your subject area, consult our list.