Research Help

Print Journals @ the Library

In the Jack C. Taylor Library, print copies of journals are treated two ways:

  • Our most recent issues (usually the current year) are kept in alphabetical order in the reading area on the first floor of the library (across from the Circulation Desk). Scholarly journals are on the low shelves and popular managinzes are on the side wall.
  • Older issues are bound in hard cover and filed on the shelves in alphabetical order (labeled by year) on the east side of the second floor of the library.

The Library receives many physical magazines and journals, some of which are NOT available through the online databases. Do a "Journal Title" search in the Library's Catalog or check in the white binder (Fontbonne Current Periodicals) on top of the shelves in the reading room to see if a journal is available in print.

Search the Library Collections

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Search the CATALOG for print & ebooks, DVDs, streaming video, and print reference materials.



You can also do an Advanced Search.

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Search the CATALOG for course reserves. Print copies of most items are available for two-hour checkout and can be picked up at the front desk.



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Search the MOBIUS Catalog


You can also do an Advanced Search.

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Search for a specific subject or choose from the list below:

Keywords vs. Subject Headings

Keywords Subject Headings

Keywords are a good place to start and use natural language to describe your topic.

Subject headings (also called a 'controlled vocabulary') are pre-defined and then associated with the specific item in a catalog or database to facilitate searching (kind of like hashtags are attached to social media posts). 

Allow for more flexibility and can be combine in a variety fo ways.

Less flexible than keywords -- require that users know the relevant terms. 

Search looks for words any where in each record -- not necessarily together. 

Limits search to the Subject Headings or descriptor field, making results more accurate. 


Might return too many or too few results. 

Allow refining of results through related sub-headings.

Might return irrelevant results.

Results are usually right on target. 

Search Tips

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  • Learn how to use Boolean Operators or use the database built-in boolean operators.Search with the Full Text option to get access to full articles, not just abstracts or summaries.
  • Use keywords in online resources, including databases, journals, and encyclopedias.
  • Search with the Peer Reviewed option to get access to articles that have been reviewed for accuracy and creditability.
  • Scan articles to see if they are useful to you. Set aside the resource or email yourself a copy for further reading.
  • Cite articles by using the citation tools provided within the resources..
  • Too much information? Narrow your search by using specific keywords or adding additional keywords.
  • Not enough information? Broaden your search by using synonyms or trying a more general search. 

Databases vs. Search Engines

Databases         Search Engines
  • Purchased by the library.
  • Content is reviewed and recommended by librarians.
  • Information is organized.
  • Information is stable.
  • Free to anyone with computer access.
  • No review standards with regard to content.
  • Information is not organized.
  • Information is not stable; locations and content continually change.

Subject Headings

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Subject Headings are a set of terms or phrases within a controlled vocabulary that organizes similar subject matter together. This allows the researcher (you!) to find resources on common subjects more efficiently.

LC Call Numbers

The Fontbonne library uses Library of Congress call numbers to organize its collection. The classification system separates all material into 21 classes, each with its own alphabet letter. These classes are divided into smaller classes, or subclasses, identified by additional letters and numbers.

You can search Fontbonne's library catalog by call number HERE.

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What is a Digital Reference Source?

A digital reference source is an electronic version of a reference item -- encyclopedia, dictionary, almanac, atlas, etc. - that is interactive and searchable online. Some of these reference items are also available in print in the Library - check the catalog!

Database Search Tip

Take Note!

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All databases are not created equal, and sometimes your search strategies can make a big difference. Use the 'Help' files at the top of the screen or ask a Librarian to maximize your results

Jack C. Taylor Library • 6800 Wydown Blvd. • St. Louis, MO 63105
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