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CSCI Graduate Student Guide Fall 2023: Getting Started


Welcome to the research guide for graduate students in Computer Science.

As your librarian, I can help you:

  • help you conduct library research to find relevant information on a topic
  • locate resources
  • purchase requested resources (books, films, standards) for the library
  • help you use library resources and citation management software

My email is

Slides from MS Class Visit Fall 2023


Library Research: Using Databases

Here are some basic steps for doing library research. For more assistance, please see the Library's guide to Research Strategies or contact your librarian.

  • Identify your topic. Search for information on what is currently known about your topic. Popular articles and websites are fine for this part of the process. Graduate students often look at the research being done by specific researchers or labs.
  • Develop search terms or "keywords." These terms are important for searching in library databases. You will want to include synonyms and alternate terms. Always look for more search terms in articles you find on your topic
  • Select a database to search. Some databases are for general (such as Academic Search Premier) and others are more specific to a subject area.  If you go to the library's research guides, you can see a list of the best databases to search for different subject areas.

Tips for using databases:

  1. Use search terms (keywords) to search for articles on a given topic. Except in Google Scholar, natural language (sentences) will not work.
  2. Use separate rows (search boxes) for your different terms when possible. If this is not possible, put AND between terms.
  3. Try using quotation marks around search terms to keep them together in a specific order.
    1. Example: "social media" AND "mental health"
  4. Use filters, usually located on the left side or top of the page, to limit results (date, etc.)
  5. Practice: finding scholarly literature is a skill that takes time to develop.

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Computer Science Librarian

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Elizabeth Novosel