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Databases & Resources

This guide provides an overview of CSM library databases and other resources for finding information.

ProQuest Databases

Basic & Advanced Search

Basic Search

The basic search option in ProQuest databases provides one search box and options to limit your search to full text and limit to peer-reviewed sources. This is the search option that you will see when you click on a link to the database.

Landing page with basic search option for ProQuest One Academic

Advanced Search

The advanced search option in ProQuest databases provides multiple search boxes (and options to add more), access to database tools such as the Thesaurus and Field Codes, and additional options to limit your search by publication date, source type, document type, location, language, and more.

ProQuest's Advanced Search page

ProQuest Advanced Search page's limit options

Searching with Subject Terms

Subject Terms (also called subjects or controlled vocabulary) are the database’s “official” keywords assigned to topics. When searching with subjects, your results will most likely be more precise and relevant.

  • Clicking on the subject term (or changing the search box’s “select a field” to Subject) will only bring up results that have been labelled with that controlled vocabulary in the subject field. 
    • Tip: you can also add a Subject Term to your list of keywords. 
  • Find Subject Terms in: 
    • Database records of a source (journal article, periodical, etc.) ProQuest database record section labeled "Subject" with a list of hyperlinked search terms.
    • Thesaurus – this is a searchable list of all controlled vocabulary from the database Advanced Search in ProQuest. "Thesaurus" is circled in red.
Using ProQuest's Thesaurus

When you click on "Thesaurus" (above the search boxes on the Advanced Search page), select ProQuest Thesaurus.

The thesaurus (or other controlled vocabulary lists) used in databases uses a hierarchical system. After clicking on a term, there may be other information and terms such as:

  • Notes - details about what this subject term is used for
  • Related terms - other terms related to the subject
  • Broader terms - the bigger category this term falls under
  • Narrower terms - the more specific subcategories for this term

"Nurses" subject in the ProQuest Thesaurus, including notes on what the term is used for, related terms, broader terms, narrower terms, and options for adding to your search.

Check the boxes next to the term(s) you want to use and click "Add to search". This will add the subject term to one of the search boxes on the Advanced Search page.


Limits are tools to limit your search results based on multiple criteria. Limits can be selected from the Advanced Search page, or added/updated on the search results page.

Left column on the results page of a ProQuest search showing the limit options

Options include:

  • Full Text (only shows sources you can access immediately) 

  • Peer Review 

  • Source Type (Scholarly Journals, Books, Newspapers, Magazines, Trade Journals, Reports, Conference Papers, Proceedings, Dissertations & Theses, Audio & Video Works, and others)
    Example of source type options from the left column of results page

  • Publication Date

  • Subject (terms from the database's thesaurus)

  • Document Type (Article, Book Chapter, Case Study, Editorial, Literature Review, News, Review, Technical Report, Transcript, etc.)Example of document type options in the left column of the results page

  • Language

  • Location

  • Database (when searching multiple ProQuest databases)

  • Person or Company/organization

Database Records & Tools

Database records include all kinds of information that can be useful when evaluating a source to determine if it meets your needs, such as:

  • Abstract (a summary of the source)
  • Subjects (database's official keywords associated with this source)
  • Author information (including affiliations or credentials)
  • Publication Title (click on this to view information about the publication, such as whether it is peer-reviewed)
  • Publication Date
  • Source Type and Document Type
  • Full Text (on the page, as a PDF, or link to external site)

The record page also includes information you may need for creating your citations, such as:

  • Volume and Issue
  • DOI
  • Permalink or URL
  • Database
Other Features
  • Suggested Sources (a short list of similar sources in the right column)
  • References (links to database records for the sources included in this source's reference list, bibliography, or works cited)
  • Documents with shared references (links to database records for sources use some of the same background research as this source)


Tools available in a database record on ProQuest; includes "Download PDF", "Cite", "Email", "Print" and "All Options" buttons

When viewing a record page, tools for saving, exporting, and citing will be in the upper right corner.

Saving / Exporting
  • Download PDF
  • Print
  • Email
  • Add to Selected Items (to email multiple sources at once)
  • Permalink (stable URL that will bring you back to this database record page; also useful for citing your source)
  • Cite
  • Export to NoodleTools (log in to your NoodleTools account before using this tool!)

Menu of all save and export options in ProQuest