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Ask A Librarian

MDS 389: Interdisciplinary Research Methods

Library resources to support students conducting interdisciplinary research

Broad search for books

Search for Books at WVU Libraries and Beyond!

Advanced Search

Google Books

Google Book Search

Link Google Books to WVU Libraries Books

When you locate a book in Google Books, select:

  • get this book in print
  • find in a library
  • you will enter the WVU Libraries Worldcat catalog

Broad search for articles


Academic Search Complete

Advanced Search



  • Use the Refine options in the left-hand column to limit your results
    • Peer-Reviewed to limit your results to scholarly sources
    • Full Text
  • Use Find it @WVU to request sources we do not own

Google Scholar and Find it @WVU

Google Scholar

  • Use Google Scholar to search scholarly literature across disciplines and formats including journal articles, material from institutional repositories and book chapters
  • Used the Advanced Settings menu in Google Scholar to get links to the Library's subscribed journals
Google Scholar Search

Google Scholar optimization

Google Scholar is linked to the WVU Library holdings with Find it@ WVU

  • WVU computers automatically link to WVU Library holdings
  • If you are not using a WVU computer (your own device or off-campus):
    • Use the settings (the gear) in Google Scholar
    • Edit Library links to include 
      • Open WorldCat - Library Search
      • West Virginia University Libraries - Find it @ WVU
  • If Full Text is not available
    • Use the Request: ILLiad button under "Request a copy of this item"
    • Login to ILLiad with your WVUID credentials
      • First time using ILLiad? Complete a short one-time registration form to activate the service
    • Enter submit at the foot of the pre-populated form to forward your request to Interlibrary Loan
    • Articles are normally provided in 24-48 hours of workdays 
  • Use the same technique using the Find It @ WVU link in any Library database

Subject specific databases

Find a suitable database 

  • Go to Databases by Subject
  • You can also navigate there from the gold databases tab on the Library homepage
  • Select the subject that broadly matches your research area 
  • Browse the list of databases and read the descriptions to choose a potential good match
  • Pay special attention if there are “Start Here” databases at the top of the list
  • If you don’t find anything promising, go back to Databases by Subject and look for distinctions in subjects
    • for example, there are individual listings for Social Sciences, Social Work, and Sociology
    • it can get confusing – experiment!
  • If you get stuck, use library chat to ask for a database recommendation at Ask-a-Librarian

Explore and analyze database functionality

  • Select the name of the database to connect to it 
  • Look at the options on the page
  • Run a few searches related to your research to test out the database
  • Use at least three different search terms and combinations to practice searching
  • Read the results to identify more terms to add to your search term list 
  • Look up words that are new to you
  • Identify database attributes, scope, and functionality 
    • Explore the advanced search options
    • Explore search refinement options available after the initial search 
    • Can you sort the results by date? Relevancy? Number of times the work is cited?
  • Note search term combinations that get the best results

Bibliographies and authors

Online bibliography search methods

Author searching

  • identify important authors
  • search for them to identify additional works that may be significant
  • you may also find criticism of their work