Posted in Research Skills

Research Skills: 3 Tips for 3 Popular Online Databases

3 scientists 1 microscopeKnowing the unique features of a given database can make your research sessions more productive and efficient. The following tips will help you navigate 3 of our most popular online resources:



  • Stat!Ref: Advanced Search: The advanced search option for the Stat!Ref database is a bit different from EBSCO, ERIC and other databases that use standard Booleon searches. Stat!Ref will instead let you check/uncheck boxes that limit your search to specific publications, specific text type (headings, reference lists, videos, etc.) and by discipline. Though it will not prompt you to select Booleon operators (AND, OR, NOT) from a menu you can further limit your results by using them in the basic search box similar to how you would conduct a Google search, ie: “muscular atrophy AND complications.”
  • Academic Search Complete: Citation Tool: The citation tool for Academic Search Complete is one of the best available but, while it provides accurate information, the format is not 100% correct as it neglects to account for indentation if reference is more than 1 line in length. To correct this issue copy and paste the citation into your document and highlight everything after the first line. Right-click the highlighted section and select “Paragraph.” On the Indent/Spacing tab under “Indentation” look for a drop-down menu called “Spacing.” Select “Hanging” from that menu and the current and all subsequent citations pasted into the document will receive a hanging indentation.
  • Milestone Documents: Not sure which of our Milestone Documents databases is the best fit for your topic? Don’t worry, they are all linked! Unless otherwise specified a general search in any one database will yield results from all of the Milestone Documents series. This helpful feature will provide more resource options and present differing perspectives to add depth to your project or paper.


We are the librarians at Haywood Community College in Clyde, NC. We offer great books, a variety of research & educational services, and a staff full of general awesomeness to the HCC and Haywood County communities.

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