Start My Research

The CityU Library and Learning Resource Center’s collection is 98% online! You need your username and password to log in to the library’s online resources.

NEED HELP GETTING STARTED? If you have been searching for information for 15-20 minutes, and you have not had success, Ask a Librarian


Find Articles, E-Books, Videos, and More

From the search box on our library’s home page, search multiple online databases, e-books, and other resources. Use the many limiters, such as Get It Now (for full-text only), publication date, subject area, and more to find what you need.


Start Your Search with Keywords

Start with a topic and determine the topic’s major concepts. These concepts are your keywords, which are very important in getting relevant results. Enter your keywords into the search box on our home page.

Topic = Keyword 1 + Keyword 2 + Keyword 3

Example: What affects the price of oil? (topic) = Oil (keyword) + supply and demand (keywords) + OPEC (keyword)


Search Tips

Use quotation marks: Put names and phrases in quotation marks in order to search for those words side-by-side (phrase searching). For example: “Erik Erikson” or “psychosocial development theory.”

Use limits (full text, publication date) to focus your search: Using multiple limits will help you narrow your search.

Screenshot showing search limiters available on the left of the search results

NOTE: If you get no results or only a few results, use fewer keywords and fewer limiters. The more keywords you put into your search, the fewer results you will get, and the fewer keywords you put into your search, the more results you will get.


Google is Great, But Be VERY Selective about Online Sources

Librarians love online searching, because there are open-access studies, reports, data and other materials available from research groups and universities. However, you need to be very selective about what you use when you search online. Make sure the sources you find online meet a high standard for quality and academic writing before citing them in your assignments.

  1. Look for content or documents that clearly have authors or are published by experts or organizations that share information about their purpose. Always read the “About Us” section. Examples of institutions producing high-quality reports/research: Pew Research Center; Harvard Family Research Project; Happiness Research Institute
  2. Look for content or documents that cite sources and offer in-depth analysis of an issue. For example, the World Happiness Report.
  3. Use a variety of criteria to determine credibility and relevance. For example, see our guide on Evaluating Internet Sources.