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This guide highlights resources helpful for education majors or those using education-related information and collections.

Finding Articles / Research for Education Majors

Education majors need to be able to locate resources when conducting research or looking for published lessons.

  1. Develop your research questions and a list of keywords to use. Add to your keywords as you find good articles or resources.
  2. Search using the articles search box on the library's homepage.
  3. Search using a subject-specific database such as Education Source or ERIC.
  4. Search for dissertations and theses at:
  5. When you find some articles that look good, remember to look at THEIR sources. This is a great way to expand your own research. Examples; Article A contains a quote you like from Article B. Go and find Article B to see if there is more information you like from that author.
  6. When looking for research, remember to search for books/e-books in our online catalog by using the Books & Media search box on the right side of the library's homepage. Click on the "Finding Materials" link in the left column of this LibGuide to learn how to do limits in the online catalog. 

IMPORTANT NOTE: Research=RE-SEARCH! It is not a once and done activity. Research requires you to search multiple times in multiple sources using multiple keywords and combinations!! 

DATABASE SEARCH vs SPECIFIC JOURNAL SEARCH: There are two main ways you can find online journal articles related to education topics:

  1. Database Search: searching in a general database or even in an education-specific database (such as Education Source) to find what you need. Results will be from a wide variety of journals.
  2. Specific Journal Search: searching in a specific journal that is good for your topic (like using the NSTA journal Science and Children for science lessons for elementary grades). Results will all be from that journal title. 
    • By going to a specific journal, you can virtually browse through the journal by going into each issue/volume to see the articles available.
    • The best way to locate articles on a specific topic in that journal is to use the "search within this publication" link that appears above the publication details for that journal.
    • If you know the title of a journal that is recommended for your search, you can find it by typing the title in the following search bar. If we have that title either in print or through an online database, you will get a list of where to find the journal. Clicking on the links that appear will take you to a page where you can access issues or search that journal.

SCHOLARLY ARTICLES: Sometimes professors will require you to use only "scholarly" or "peer-reviewed" sources in your assignments. The chart linked below explains what this means. (Hint: If you can buy it at Weis or Barnes and Noble, it is NOT a scholarly source.)

Popular vs Scholarly Handout


  • Format: In your results list, you might have a variety of formats including only an abstract (if you didn’t limit your search to full-text only), PDF Full Text, or HTML Full Text. Always choose the PDF if available.
    • PDF’s are images of the actual journal article as if you were looking in the journal itself. This gives you accurate page numbers, images, and charts as if you were looking in the journal itself.
    • HTML means that someone typed in the information into a computer format. Tables and images may be all grouped at the end, and the page numbers depend on how it prints on your printer. 
  • Abstract: Sometimes it is helpful to see part of all of the abstract in your results list rather than just the title. You can make a quick change screen shot of EBSCOhost's page options for results liststo be able to see this in the databases we get from EBSCOhost. Go to Page Options (screenshot to the right). The results list defaults to "Brief." "Standard" gives you the first lines of the abstract in your results list, and "Detailed" gives you the full abstract. 
  • Boolean Terms: Use the Boolean drop-down option to get better results!
    • And: results must contain all of the terms connected by "AND". This narrows your search. Searching for "teaching" and "math" and "elementary" will narrow your search to articles that are about all three topics.
    • Or: results will contain either of the words connected by "OR". This will broaden your search. A good example for "OR" is using the terms "college" or "university". Some authors might use one term and other authors may use the other.  You don't want to miss articles just because the authors used different terms, so use an "OR" in your search to get articles that contain either one of those terms.
    • Not: results must exclude a certain term. This will narrow your search. You may want to search for information on the country Turkey but are getting results about the bird. Use "Turkey NOT bird" or "NOT foul" to exclude these results from your list..

ERIC is an online library of education research and information, sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education. Here's a video for how to use the ERIC website.

For more videos about searching the ERIC website, go to:

You can also search ERIC through Rohrbach Library's subscription through EBSCO