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All Topics Indexes

A definition

What the all topics or multidisciplinary databases have in common is that they all cover a wide range of subject areas or more than one discipline.

The trick to selecting an appropriate database is — research.

GALILEO provides detailed information via the "more »". Read the information for a database before you dedicate a search to it. A little up-front reading will help you eliminate the databases that don't have what you want. Some examples of brief descriptions of all topics or multidisciplinary databases are show below:

screen shot of Multi Subject database listing

Notice the brief description for both Academic Search Complete Research and Library (at ProQuest) indicate at least some articles are peer-reviewed and all topics are covered.

The Strengths of General & Multi Subject (All Topics) Indexes

The strengths of all topics databases are that they cover many topics and include some full-text articles from popular newspapers and magazines. But if you're looking for academic sources, this isn't always the best place to look.

Remember that more and more databases include full-text articles, and the articles may be from popular magazines or scholarly journals. When you get a list of results from a search, determine if the periodical is scholarly or popular. For those databases that include scholarly journals and popular magazines, you can check peer-reviewed to limit your search. However, peer reviewed articles are not always scholarly. If you cannot decide, and your research requires scholarly sources, ask a librarian or your instructor.

screen shot of database search options

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