Locating Journal Articles - Detailed Instructions

Locating journal articles is a multi-step process:
  1. Locate appropriate citations using an online database or print index.

  2. Determine that the library owns the required issue(s) in either print or electronic format and retrieve article.

  3. If Penfield does not own the required issue order the article through interlibrary loan.

The best source of assistance with this or any library research question is the librarian at the Research Help Desk, askalibrarian@oswego.edu or (315) 312-4267.

Step One: Locate appropriate journal citations.
  1. On the home page, select the "Research Subject Guides" link, which leads to our "Research Subject Guides" page.

  2. Select the subject that most closely matches the topic on which you need articles. These links will lead you to research guides which provide, in addition to databases; Web sites, background information, and other specialized information resources relating to a particular subject.

  3. Under "Journal Articles", databases have been arranged such that the most widely used appear at the top of the list. Based on this, and by reading the descriptions provided, select a database that matches your needs. Databases which will allow you to obtain the articles through the computer will have a notation in their description that mentions FULL TEXT.

  4. Each database usually provides a keyword search that will enable you to do a simple search based on a few words describing your topic. Enter the terms you are interested in and activate the search.

  5. If you do not find articles that interest you, try different search terms. If you continue to have difficulty you may wish to try a different database, and/or consult with a librarian. For helpful hints relating to database use consult our Tips For Database Searching page.

  6. Record, print or e-mail the citation information that will allow you to locate article.

Step Two: Determine that the Library owns a certain journal title and issue.

To determine if a journal is owned by Penfield Library:

  1. Go to the Library's homepage

  2. Click on "Journals and Newspapers by Title" (Under "FIND ARTICLES AND MORE").

  3. On this page you have the option of searching for the title or selecting the title from an alphabetical list.

  4. Locate the Search for journals and newspapers: search box.

  5. In this box, type in the "name of the journal", then click Start Search

  6. You will see listings for the title outlining Penfield's holdings. In the image below you will note that Penfield owns "Business Week" in print from 1953 to the present: in (Penfield Library) Note: Journal Collection, 2nd Floor: No. 1227 (1953) - current. All print journals are located on the second floor, arranged alphabetically.

  7. If Penfield has online access to the journal you will see listings for each database that contains full text articles of the journal. In the image below you will note that Penfield has full text articles from "Business Week" available in three databases.

  8. Click on the database name (Caution: Be aware of the beginning and ending dates of the journals listed in the database, in case your article does not fall into that time period!) You will be taken to that database.

  9. To retrieve the electronic copy of a journal article:
    In the database's search box, type in the title of the article you want to find.


Sample Search Results Screen for "Business Week"
Image of journal title search request results screen


Step 3: Order the required article through Interlibrary Loan.

If Penfield does not own the article you need in print or electronic format you may order the article through Interlibrary Loan.