Library:Library Research Skills For Biologists/Module 4/Module 4B SearchingForArticles/Page 05 VideoScript

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SCRIPT 4B.05 Subject and keyword searching in Zoological Record

SCRIPT 4B.05 Subject and keyword searching in Zoological Record


This UBC Library tutorial introduces keyword and subject searching in Zoological Record.

To find the research literature we use an article index. Let’s use Zoological Record. This article index has extensive coverage of the zoological and animal science literature from 1864 to present.

Let’s search for articles about balanus. First we type balanus in the search box. And we’ll leave the default search field as Topic. This is sometimes called a keyword search.

We find over 2900 results with this search. These articles have the word balanus in the citation information for the article; [click on title of first article] This topic field search, also called a keyword search, finds the word balanus is in the title, or the abstract or the subject. A keyword search is a great way to find lots of information on your topic.

Now, let’s try a subject search to limit the results to the most relevant articles. To do that we first click on Search.

Now we’ll search for the word balanus in the subject descriptors. [click on subject descriptor] Each article in Zoological Record has been assigned controlled terms called a subject descriptors to describe the major subject matter of the article. We can use these subject descriptors to find the most relevant articles on our topic. We now have about 400 fewer results because we searched only in the subject field and narrowed the results to articles which are about this topic. [click on title of first article] We see that balanus is a subject descriptor for this article. This means this article’s major subject content is about this organism.

In the next section, we’ll look how we can combine concepts. [Final Slide:] You can find more UBC Library videos at the UBC channel on YouTube. See the UBC Library Teaching and Learning playlist. Also, get more help from your subject librarian, by dropping by our library information desk or through chat reference at AskAway.