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Academic Skills Online

These online tutorials are designed to help you develop the academic skills you will need whilst studying at Goldsmiths.

Using Databases

When looking for information online you may experience "information overload" - a feeling of being overwhelmed by the retrieval of a high number of irrelevant results. Remembering to use the filters or the advanced search option in Library Search (outlined in the previous section) can help with this problem. You might also consider using individual subject specific databases to begin your searches and narrow your results.

Goldsmiths subscribes to a long list of databases which contain full text and references to academic content from journals, books and audio-visual resources. The majority of this content can be accessed through Library Search but it is good to know how individual databases operate and worth noting that some of our online content (particularly audio-visual material) is not featured in Library Search.    

Different kinds of database

Full text - Contains the full text of journal articles, usually available to download as a PDF 


Abstract only Contain reference details of the article and a summary or abstract.


Citation Index Show you how many times the article has been referenced by other authors included in the database


Audio-visual - Allow you to stream or download images, video and sound 

Which database should I use?

For a full list of the databases we subscribe to at Goldsmiths please see our A-Z list or you could also look at the Subject Support pages which will signpost you to particular resources in your subject area. 

Database video guides