How do I find ...
The Utrecht University library homepage
is the best starting point for your literature search.
Many search engines and the greater part of the electronic journals are off-campus only accessible to Utrecht University staff and students
Click on one of the search questions below for a search strategy
Are you searching for a book or a journal?
Do you want to find out more about a subject?
- Consult a general encyclopedia or subject encyclopedia from the digital or print collections. You will find a brief description of your subject and often a reading list.
- Go to the catalogue and search via Type word or phrase for relevant books or handbooks. Fill in one or more words. Use * to truncate words and Filter to narrow down your search to, for instance, language or year of publication. If necessary, repeat the search using other words.
- In the search engines you can search for a review article. Review articles give a survey of the state of affairs as well as an extensive reading list. Enter the word "review" and a subject as search terms.
Do you quickly want to find a few articles?
- Choose Omega and click on Search. Fill in one or more words. In the articles you want, select Full text and the full article will appear on your screen. Sometimes you can click on the listing all possibilities to get hold of the journal article.
Do you want to find as much literature as possible?
- Search by subject in the database of your choice via Search engines. In many databases, you will find a button Thesaurus or Index, helping you to find the most appropriate search terms.
- If you click on the button , next to a title, a menu will appear containing all possibilities to get hold of the book or article in question. The best possibility within Utrecht University Library is listed on top:
You are looking for information on the internet
- It is very important to evaluate Web pages critically, because of their variable quality. Evaluation criteria are available.
- On the library pages for many disciplines you will find a selection of internet sources.
- Search engines can find a lot of interesting web pages on specific subjects, when you use well chosen keywords. A second search engine might come up with other interesting hits. When you are looking for information on a general subject, e.g. online archives or sites on an important author, web directories lead you to the most important sites.
- Google: Google is the best search engine at this moment, even for Dutch pages. It not only finds more pages than other search engines, it also puts the important ones high up in the list. Google refers to web pages as well as PDF files and Microsoft Word files.
There is also a Google directory available.
- AllTheWeb: another fine search engine, AlltheWeb offers links to current pages from news sites.
- Google Scholar: Google Scholar is a search engine for academic publications on the Internet.
- Yahoo! Directory: a web directory, excellent as an addition to the Google directory.
- Search Engine Watch: American information site on searching the Internet. Refers to search engines, evaluates them and offers valuable tips.
How to select the appropriate literature?
- Is it relevant? Read the summary - if available - next to the reference and/or check the year of publication.
- Try to find out if the source is reliable (is it a scientific journal or some obscure website?)
- Is the literature cited by others? (citations can be found through Web of Science and/or Google Scholar)
- Is the journal mentioned in the Journal Citation Reports
How to get hold of a book or journal?
- If it is an electronic journal the Utrecht University Library has a subscription to, you can click on Full text and the full article will appear on your screen.
- If you have found it in our catalogue, you can click on Availability to see if it is for loan and in which library it is located.
- You can collect the book yourself if it is on the open shelves. If it is in a depository, or if it is on loan to another borrower or if you would like to pick up the book at another library location, you can request it through the catalogue using your Solis ID or library card number and password.
- You need a library card or student card to borrow books or journals. Borrowing is free of charge. See also: Borrowing.