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Databases are collections of resources such as journal articles and conference papers, and also sometimes book chapters and reports. If you are doing a literature search or systematic review they are a key resource to use.
To identify journal articles, books, book chapters, dissertations, etc. on a particular topic you need to use a database.
The main databases for Political Science and Sociology are:
Academic Search Complete This link opens in a new window Academic Search Complete, designed specifically for academic institutions, is the world's most valuable and comprehensive scholarly, multi-disciplinary full-text database, with more than 5,300 full-text periodicals, including 4,400 peer-reviewed journals. In addition to full text, this database offers indexing and abstracts for more than 9,300 journals and a total of 10,900 publications including monographs, reports, conference proceedings, etc.
AgeLine This link opens in a new window AgeLine focuses exclusively on the population aged 50+ and issues of aging. AgeLine is the premier source for the literature of social gerontology and includes aging-related content from the health sciences, psychology, sociology, social work, economics, and public policy.
Applied Social Sciences Index & Abstracts (ASSIA) This link opens in a new window This database is designed to meet the information needs of the caring professions, and spans the literature of health, social services, psychology, sociology, economics, politics, race relations and education. The database abstracts and indexes over 500 journals, from more than 16 countries.
CAIN Web Service - Conflict and Politics in Northern Ireland. The CAIN (Conflict Archive on the INternet) Web site contains information and source material on 'the Troubles' and politics in Northern Ireland from 1968 to the present. There is also some material on society in the region. CAIN is located in Ulster University and is part of INCORE and ARK.
JSTOR This link opens in a new window Provides page images of back issues of the core scholarly journals in the humanities, social sciences, and basic sciences from the earliest issues to within a few years of current publication. Users may browse by journal title or discipline, or may search the full-text or citations/abstracts. New issues of existing titles and new titles are added approximately on a weekly basis.
Peace Process: Layers of Meaning (LOMOND) Peace Process: Layers of Meaning is a hybrid project involving collaboration between Queen Mary, University of London, Trinity College Dublin and Dundalk Institute of Technology, The project has three main elements: the collection and storage of one hundred heritage interviews of the recollections and views of key figures in the Peace Process; the imparting of interview skills to students, teachers and community members in the border area; and the development of an online directory of all extant interviews relating to the Peace Process (LOMOND).
RIAN This link opens in a new window RIAN the Irish word for path is your route to Open Access Irish research publications.
Scopus This link opens in a new window Scopus is the largest abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature: scientific journals, books and conference proceedings. Delivering a comprehensive overview of the world's research output in the fields of science, technology, medicine, social sciences, and arts and humanities, Scopus features smart tools to track, analyze and visualize research.
Social Care Online Social Care Online is the UK's largest online database of information on all aspects of social work and social care. It includes legislation, government documents, practice and guidance, systematic reviews, research briefings, UK grey (informally-published) literature, reports, and journal articles. The database is updated daily and contains over 160,000 records from the 1980s onwards.
Social Sciences Full Text This link opens in a new window Social Sciences Full Text™ provides access to a wide assortment of the most important English-language social science journals. Social Sciences Full Text™ includes full text of articles from some 215 journals dating as far back as 1995 and indexing and abstracts of over 625 periodicals dating as far back as 1983 nearly 400 of which are peer-reviewed covering the latest concepts theories and methods from both applied and theoretical aspects of the social sciences.
SocINDEX This full-text database covers sociology and encompasses all sub-disciplines and closely related areas of study. It includes journal articles dating back to 1895 as well as books and conference papers.
Sociological Abstracts This database abstracts and indexes the international literature of sociology and related disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences. The database provides abstracts of journal articles and citations to book reviews drawn from thousands of serials publications and also provides abstracts of books, book chapters, dissertations, conference papers and working papers. Cited references are included for many journal articles.
Worldwide Political Science Abstracts This database provides abstracts and indexing of the international literature of political science and international relations, along with complementary fields, including international law and public administration/policy. The database provides abstracts of journal articles and citations to book reviews drawn from over 1,500+ serials publications and also provides abstracts of books, book chapters, dissertations and working papers.
How to Access Databases
It's very simple. You can access any of the Library's databases just by searching the Library Catalogue. Simply enter the name of the database in the search box and click on the database link in the search results. Remember to log in for full access.
Searching within a Database
When you are searching a database, you can access content by searching under:
- subject heading or keyword
- journal name
Getting to the full-text
There are two main kinds of database:
- Bibliographic - they won't show you the full paper straight away, but you can often read an abstract and see the author details. You'll need to check using if the library has access to the journal article
- Full text - will let you open and read the article directly from the list of results