Using databases

What is a database?

A library database helps you find academic literature such as:

  • journal articles
  • ebooks
  • conference papers
  • book chapters
  • reference information (facts, statistics, background information)

as well as magazine and newspaper articles.

They are searchable online and often cover specific subject or discipline areas.

Many of the documents found in our databases cannot be found by searching the internet (e.g. with Google), as access has been paid for by the library. In addition, the information is more likely to be reliable and more thoroughly researched than material found on the Internet.

Where do I find databases?

Find databases on the ACU library databases page.
You must login if you are not on campus. For help, see the off-campus access page.

How to search databases

Library databases, ejournal and ebook collections all work in different ways. The best thing to do when you go to a database for the first time is to have a look at the Help information. Sometimes they will have online tutorials or guides to searching that will help you make the best use of that particular database.

Take a look at our Advanced Database Searching guide.


Most library databases will provide full text access to an entire document to read, print or save. However, some will only include a summary or a citation. When this occurs, look for the Findit icon. Findit allows you to check whether we have access to the full text in another database, or if there is a print copy available in one of our campus libraries. Just click on the Findit icon and follow the instructions on the screen.

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Page last updated: 23 Mar 2017

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