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Using Library Resources: Basics of Using Library Resources

An interactive tutorial to understand the research from start to finish.

Basics of Using Library Resources

Accessing Library Services Off-Campus

  1. Log into DCCCD email first
    1. Your student email username is:
    2. Your password is the same as eCampus/eConnect
    3. Example:
  2. Open new tab in browser for Library Website to access the library catalog and databases.


The Library Catalog

The library catalog allows you to search for all types of sources in the DCCCD Library databases as well as at the 7 DCCCD colleges. 

What you can do in the library catalog:

  • Search for print sources like books, scholarly and newspaper articles from library databases, and videos
  • Access “My Library Account” (login is the same as DCCCD email)
  • Pin and saved search results to a favorites list.
  • Access to different citation tools like RefWorks, Easybib, or Citation
  • Access databases

Choosing a Database

You can choose a database by Subject, Type or Vendor.  Also, you can select a database by name from the A to Z list.

Recommended Databases:

  1. Credo Reference:  Has background information and links to scholarly databases like Academic Search Complete
  2. Explora:  allows you to research by topic area
  3. Academic Search Complete: Able to find more scholarly sources as well as combine different databases


Searching a Database/Library Catalog

  • Each Database starts with Keyword search box
    • Keywords are broad searches
    • Results will only pick up individual words from a multiple keywords search
    • Make a keyword search more effective with Advanced Searching
    • Rephrase your search if you don’t see the results you want. Think of context and what professional words you may need to use.  For example: Change “head injury” to “head trauma”
  • Limit or Refine your search results
    • Limit to Scholarly or Peer-Reviewed
    • Limit to Full-text
    • Limit to Academic Journals, Newspapers, or e-books
    • Limit to specific dates (important for getting information with the most relevant research data)
  • Be aware of captions and icons
    • Icons are used to show what type of resource it is: newspaper, reference, video, article, book, etc
    • Captions are also there to tell you what type of source it is: book review versus academic journal article


Saving your Research

You can save your research as you go. The following options lets you save a copy and the citation with it.

  • Email the article to yourself. Be sure to send a Full-text or PDF copy as make sure the citation is in the correct format like MLA 8 for example
  • Save to One-Drive or Google Drive.  Make sure you are already logged into DCCCD email or Gmail for this to be seamless.

Managing Your Citations

  • Create a RefWorks account and export articles there.  Also, be sure to login to Refworks already before you start your search. You will need to create a Refworks account (see next page).
  • Alternatively you can copy and paste citations from databases into your Works Cited page.

North Lake College Library --- Reference Desk: (972) 273-3401 --- Circulation Desk: (972) 273-3400 --- My Library Account

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