As our programs have grown, we’ve expanded our print and online holdings to better serve our diverse population. Alternative and Renewable Energy is one of our most recent additions to our programs here at EU. We have several different excellent resources for alternative and renewable energy including print titles, eBooks, the Environment Studies and Policies Collection Available through InfoTrac, ProQuest and LexisNexis.
Today, I’d like to focus on the energy databases that are available through EBSCO: Energy and PowerSource and GreenFILE. Log-In to the Library Splash Page. From there, navigate to the blue box with the library databases and click on EBSCO Energy Research Databases. A new window will open which looks like this:
From this screen, you can select to search in either Energy & Power Source or in GreenFILE. Energy & Power Source provides coverage of information relevant to many areas integral to the energy and power industries. This includes topics such as petroleum, natural gas, electric power, coal, nuclear power, renewable energy, and others. GreenFILE focuses on the human impact to the environment. It contains content on global warming, green building, pollution, sustainable agriculture, renewable energy, recycling, and more. If your topic doesn’t seem to fall neatly into one of these categories, you can also search both. This will bring you back more results, but you might have to wade through a lot of information that isn’t relevant to your topic. Once you select either or both databases, click the grey button marked continue.
Regardless of which combination of databases you choose to search, the screen that opens will look the same. From here, you have many options for searching. To begin with, if you know which article you’re looking for, you can try searching by Title or Author. If you don’t, your best options are to search by All Text or Subject Terms. Searching in All Text will bring you back more results, but searching by Subject Term will bring you back more relevant results. As always, you should make sure to click the boxes marked “Full Text” and “Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals”. Doing this will ensure that the results you bring back will be full text articles, not just abstracts or bibliographic entries and that those articles will come from peer-reviewed journals.
Other options for searching include language type (most of the articles will be in English, anyway) document type, publication type and even the number of pages. Unless you have already tried searching and have brought back a large number of results or you have a very broad topic that you have not narrowed down yet, we don’t suggest that you limit your search too much. Too few results can be just as problematic as too many.
You can also refine your search from the results page. The left hand task bar gives you many different ways to do this. Two options that we recommend refining by date (now that you’ve seen how many results your initial search brings back) and limiting the results by EBSCO suggested subject terms. Below, you can see the search results I received for the subject term “wind turbines”. EBSCO gives me the following related subjects: “wind power”, “wind power plants”, “electric generators”, “power resources” and “renewable energy resources”. Checking any of these boxes and clicking update will cross search the results I already received for “wind turbines” with these other terms. This can be a really effective way to further refine your search results (and your research)!
Clicking on PDF Full Text will allow you to view the entire article in a new window. From here you can print or e-mail a copy to yourself.
Questions? Contact your campus librarian! We’ll be happy to help.