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English Language and Literature: Find Articles

A guide to doing English language and literature research at Bonnie Bell Wardman Library.

dubSearch: Search Multiple Databases

With dubSearch, you can search multiple databases at once to simultaneously browse articles, books, DVDs, newspapers, and multimedia content.

Off Campus Access

If you are off campus, you can still access research databases. Your my.whittier username and password allows you to access databases from home. 

Try Google Scholar

Provides a search of scholarly literature across many disciplines and sources, including theses, books, abstracts and articles.

Google Scholar Search

About this page

This page is divided into four sections:

  1. Databases, which contains a brief definition and history of databases, and directs researchers where to find the databases to which Wardman Library provides access. 
  2. Suggested databases for English Language and Literatureintended primarily for researchers searching for full-text articles available online.
  3. Journal titles A-Z, for researchers looking for articles when a database only provides an abstract (or if a researcher finds a potentially useful article title cited in a footnote or bibliography).
  4. Interlibrary loan, which describes the process by which one can obtain articles from a journal that's not in Wardman Library.

1. Databases

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So what's a database? Simply, databases are online indexes to articles. Originally, databases provided basic information about articles, and sometimes included a helpful abstract (summary) of particular articles. Increasingly, more and more databases contain instantly accessible full-text articles, although many still contain just abstracts and/or citation information. In this latter case, jump to section 3 on this page in order to learn how to get the journal that contains the article you need.

Researchers can search databases by keywords, subjects, titles, and authors, among other criteria. The library has a number of databases to help you find articles from scholarly journals, newspapers, and popular magazines. Browse the databases at Wardman Library here. (Or, from the library's homepage, click on the purple find books & articles button, then the Databases A-Z link.)

The list in the following section, compiled by Mary Augugliaro and Joanna Perez, includes useful databases for students of English language and literature. A my.whittier username and password are required.

2. Suggested Databases for English & Literature

3. Journal titles A-Z

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If you have discovered the title of an article in a database that does not provide full-text to the journal it's from, or you have noted the title of an article you want cited in another source, you'll need to determine whether Wardman Library holds or has access to the journal in which the article was published.

While it's true that some journals are listed in the library catalog, the most comprehensive list of Wardman Library's journals holdings is accessible through the "Journal Titles A-Z" index. This is the quickest way to figure out if the library holds a particular journal. Follow these steps to use this resource:

  • Before you search make sure you have the full citation of the article that you want to find, including the title of the journal, the volume, issue number, and date of the article.
  • Click hereOr, from the library's homepage, click on the purple find books & articles button, then the Journal Titles A-Z link in the center column.
  • Type in the title of the journal -- not the article -- that you are searching for. This will search all of the library’s print and electronic journals at once.
  • The search results will tell you if and where the journal can be found -- either in one of the library’s electronic databases and/or in the library’s print collection.
  • Make sure you check the date and/or volume number of the journal.  The journal may be available but is it available for the specific volume that you need in order to find the article?
  • If your article is available electronically there will be a link to follow. Click for full-text.
  • If your article is available via "Wardman Print Journals" then you need to come into the library to make a copy. Journals published before the current year will be shelved on the top floor.  Any issue from the current year is on the first floor.  All journals are shelved alphabetically by title. 

If your search produced no results then you may try to request the article through an interlibrary loan (see the following section).

4. Interlibrary loan, or "what do I do if I need an article that's not in the library?!"

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Don't panic! Once you have checked the Journal Titles A-Z listings thoroughly and you are sure the library does not own or have access to a journal, you can request the article you need by arranging an interlibrary loan (ILL).

  • Click hereOr, from the library's homepage, click on the purple find books & articles button, then the Interlibrary Loan (ILL) link in the REQUEST OFF-CAMPUS MATERIALS column, and then the Enter Interlibrary Loan Requests link after the jump.
  • Choose what type of material you need to borrow (in this case, journal article).
  • Next, sign in with your name and your library card number, which is the barcode number from you student ID.
  • Fill in the full citation for the article, and click submit. 

Your request may take anywhere from three to four days to a week or more depending on the lending library. You will receive an email when the article is ready to be picked up at the circulation desk in the library.


David McCaslin's picture
David McCaslin
Wardman Library