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English 125: Current Authors, with Nancy Kennedy: Tips for Searching


When searching for articles in a database like ProQuest or Academic Search Premier, you want to use the different options available to create a well-focused search resulting in a reasonable number (less than 50) of relevant articles.  A few ways to focus your searches:

•  Combine keywords    
•  Check the box for full-text articles only
•  Designate a "Document type"
•  Define a date range
•  Check the box for academic journals only
•  Use their "Suggested Topics" or "Find More Like This" feature

Searching for literary criticisms

Here is an example of how to find literary criticisms in Academic Search Premier. 


Using keywords to search the databases

* To find criticisms of an author's work in ProQuest, type the author's name or the name of the work in the first box and use AND to add the word criticism in the second box. For example:

junot diaz AND criticism
"things they carried" AND criticism

* The databases are not the best source for biographical information but you may find some by typing the author's name in the search box and add the word biography.  For example:

alexie AND biography