Databases or Internet Resources?

When you need authoritative, scholarly information for class assignments or research, always turn to OhioLINK and your local library first. While the Internet can also be useful in the research process, you have to watch out for broken links, unverified information, questionable results from search engines, and fees for full-text materials. Web sites suggested by search engines such as Google may not provide access to the information of recognized authority and scholarly, research literature (such as peer-reviewed journals) that you need for classes or research.

  Database Internet
Creation: major information providers and publishers; experts and professionals anyone
Access: subscribers only anyone
Searching: proprietary search engine free search engine such as Google or Yahoo
Retrieval: one search gets results from a single database or from a pre-determined group of databases one search gets results from many different Internet sites
Content: publications of recognized reliability, including peer-reviewed journals must be independently verified

Some databases are bibliographic and contain citations that refer to and describe resources, either print or electronic. Other databases contain the actual digital content: articles, books, or audiovisual media in electronic format.

OhioLINK and your library create Web sites that provide access to online databases. However, the contents of these databases are not searched by Internet search engines.

Check with the reference librarians at your library. They have information about the services of your own library and further recommendations on appropriate sources (electronic or print) to meet your information needs.

November 2007