1. Check-mark the Full-Text box
Of all the search options listed, this is all you'll really need to be concerned with for this assignment. This will ensure that all articles that come up in your results list will be available to read full-text.
2. For this database, you'll need to enter more than just the name of the toxic compound in the search box.
You'll need to add an additional one or two words.
Q. Why? What will happen?
A. Well, let's just say you'll likely be pretty overwhelmed at the number of results if you don't. :-)
Q. Okay. But how do I know what word(s) to add?
A. The best way to figure out what word or words you should add is to go back and look at the description of the assignment.
Take a closer look at the questions your instructor wants you to answer and look for clues within them. Hopefully you see important key words that jump out at you. Maybe words like environment, pollution, animals, or effects of.
3. Combine one of those words with the name of your toxic compound, using the connecting word "AND."
Example: carbon monoxide AND environment
You will notice that this search tactic greatly reduces the number of results, making those results more narrow and focused.
Q. I've done that. But the number of results still seems like a lot. Plus, a lot of the articles that come up look complicated and difficult to understand. What else can I do?
A. Try focusing only on Trade Journals
To find Trade Journals, scroll down a bit and look on the left hand side under Source Types.
"Academic Journals" are what we just mentioned. They tend to be aimed at specialists in the field and often contain the results of scientific studies. "Magazines" are your typical mainstream publication that you’ve probably seen before. "Trade Publications" are sort of between Magazines and Academic Journals. In other words, they’re aimed at professionals in field, but are a little more scholarly than your average magazine. And then you have "Newspaper" articles and "Book Reviews."
Your instructor will likely not expect you to find academic journal articles, as this is more of an introductory course. However, they will want you to find articles more substantive and specialized than just a magazine or newspaper article or a book review. So your best bet here would be to check-mark the Trade Publications box. This will even further narrow and focus your search results, thus resulting in a list of articles that are more appropriate for this assignment.
Q. Great! I think I've found an article I'd like to use. What do I click on to actually start reading it?
A. If you check-marked the Full-Text box before beginning your search, you should just be able to click on the title of the article to be taken to it.
Once inside the article, look to the right-hand side for a set of tools/icons. The Citation tool should be the fourth one down - it looks like a piece of paper with writing on it. (Rest your cursor over it and it should say "Cite.")
Click the Citation tool to see a listing of pre-generated, ready-made citations in various formats. As always, know which format your instructor wants (in the sciences, it will likely be APA) and double check the citation for accuracy!