Skip to main content
RESEARCH GUIDES ACC Home Page

ACC Libraries Tech Toolbox: Databases

Helpful resources for working with a variety of technologies available to you at ACC.

Library E-Books

The ACC Library has access to thousands of full-text e-books! Go to our page on  Online eBooks for more information, to see a list of our vendors, and to start reading!

Downloading E-Books

Thousands of our e-books are even downloadable, so you can read them on your (compatible) device!

Find out how to download some of our e-books to your computer or compatible device.

What is a Database?

What is a database?

In the most general sense, a database is a collection of data organized to be manipulated (input, edited, updated, deleted) and retrieved in some form by the user. Even when shopping online, you are retrieving information from a database.

What are library databases?

"Library Databases" is a convenient name for collections (the library has subscribed to) of published information -- books, articles, videos, music, citations to articles, and other resources -- usually in electronic format. These are collections of higher quality online resources. They are just like using the web, but with quality control of the content and, usually, extra features, such as the ability to e-mail content, generate citations, translate into other languages, etc. ACC Library Services subscribes to dozens of these databases.

Why should you care?

The library databases can be searched for information on a topic by keyword, subject, author, title, and phrase. By using them, you boost your chances of finding good quality sources that have gone through some quality control measures. And, many of the results are available in full-text that you can download or email to yourself.

Why can't you just use Google?

Google and other search engines can be useful for many purposes. However, your instructors want you to complete assignments using credible, often "scholarly" or "peer-reviewed" sources. Library databases offer sources that have gone through some quality control and can be limited that criteria. Google and other search engine results must be carefully evaluated for accurate and competent authorship.

Finding Scholarly (Peer-Reviewed) Articles

Most databases feature a check box on the results page so you can retrieve only articles that are from peer-reviewed, academic or scholarly journals. Look for a checkbox to limit your search results to scholarly or peer-reviewed journals only.  (You can search Library Databases directly by choosing a database or  from the library home page.)

For a quick search:

  • Use the search box at the top of the library home page to search for articles and more.
  • Enter the search keywords:  your keywords here
  • Your results will show in two tabs 1-- Books, movies, and music  2- Journals magazines, news (articles)
  • Choose the Journals magazines, news (articles) tab
  • For articles, you can then limit to full-text and/or scholarly (or peer-reviewed) articles by clicking those limits in the right sidebar.

Accessing Streaming Media (videos and music)

The Library subscribes to thousands of educational streaming videos and music. You can access them from any device with internet access. Off campus, you'll use your ACC eID to get in.

Page Editor

Page Editor: Margaret Peloquin Sep 2019


ACC Web Site || Library Web Site || GET HELP! || Search the Library
Contact Us • © Library Services, Austin Community College