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How To Search the Library Collections

A guide to basic research skills, and how to access the Library Collections at CityU

Combining Databases


Depending on the topic of research, it may be useful to search in subject-specific databases that cover more than one topic. Typically, when searching in individual subject databases, we search in each database to make sure that we get a good coverage of articles from a wide variety of sources. Some database platforms (like ProQuest and EBSCO) allow users to create custom databases combinations to fit their specific needs. For example, here are some topics that may need research in multiple databases: 

  • Example 1: Support for students with eating disorders within the school system 
    • Subtopic 1: eating disorder treatment in teens (counselling/psychology/child development) 
    • Subtopic 2: within a school system (education) 
  • Example 2: Market analysis of Learning Management Systems in elementary schools 
    • Subtopic 1: Industry and market analysis of a technology (business/market/industry) 
    • Subtopic 2: popularity and use in elementary schools (education) 

Each of these searches may benefit from combining subject databases across multiple disciplines. In example one, you'd probably have luck finding information on this topic in both education AND counseling/psychology databases. In example two, you may want to search across our business and management databases, as well as our education databases.

Find out how to combine databases in both the EBSCO and ProQuest platforms below. As always, if you have any further questions, please ask a librarian.

Combining Databases in EBSCO

To combine databases in EBSCO:

  1. Start in any EBSCOhost database
  2. Click on "Choose Databases" (located above the search fields) to add other EBSCOhost database collections to this search
  3. Choose additional collections from the list
  4. Confirm your selection by clicking "Ok"
  5. Search as usual

Watch a video detailing this process here:

Combining Databases in ProQuest

To combine databases in ProQuest:

  1. Start in any ProQuest database
  2. Click on "Databases" (located in the top tool bar) to see which databases you are currently searching
  3. Browse the list of databases and select the ones you wish to add to your search
  4. Finalize your selection by clicking on the "Use selected databases" link
  5. Search as usual

Watch a video detailing this process here: