When we refer to articles we are usually talking about articles from an academic or research journal. This may be a print journal or an ejournal. Journals are published on a regular basis throughout the year, for example monthly or quarterly, and contain many journal articles.

To search for articles in a particular subject you need to use a bibliographic database. Our databases index bibliographic information about articles such as article title and author; and publication details such as the journal where the article is published, as well as the year, volume and issue number. They also include information such as keywords, subject headings, thesaurus terms and abstracts which will help you to identify an article relating to your subject.

You will need to develop a search plan to help you use the search functions in the databases, in order to find the information you need.

The databases that you have access to will depend on the type of user you are.

Keele Staff and Students

For quick searching check Library Search. This will allow you to run simple searches across a wide range of resources. For more in-depth searching try the bibliographic databases. There is a selection of the most suitable for medical, midwifery and nursing students. Log in using your your Keele username and password off-campus.

NHS Staff

NHS users can run simple searches against the NHS Knowledge and Library Hub. You can complete more in-depth searching via the NHS-subscribed databases, such as cinahl, medline, embase and more. These are available via the platforms Ebsco, Ovid and Proquest. You can find a list of available databases on our NHS Resources page. You will need to log in using your NHS OpenAthens username and password to access full-text.

To find an article you need to already have quite a bit of information about that article, including:

  • the title of the article
  • the author(s)
  • the journal that article is published in
  • the year the article was published
  • the volume and issue of the journal where the article was published
  • the page numbers for the article if possible

Try to find as much information as you can. It won't be wasted, you'll need it for your reference.

Then you can start searching:

  • NHS users can go to the Articles for the NHS page and try the options presented there to find your full-text article.
  • Keele users can go to the Articles for Keele page and try the options presented there.
  • You will find our journals lists on our Journals page; check that the holdings cover the year, volume and issue that you are looking for.
  • Check the Keele A-Z list of ejournals for the journal title and see whether the issue you need is available.
  • Check the NHS Browzine Journals list of journals for the journal title and whether the holdings include the issue you are looking for.
  • Check whether the article is available via open access by searching on Google Scholar.

If you cannot find the article ask a member of our staff or apply for an inter-library loan.

When you are searching databases for journal articles you may find that you can get access to the full-text of some articles but not all the articles. This is because although we have subscribed to the database for the bibliographic information we do not have a subscription to all the journal titles it contains.

Where we have a subscription to the journal title you should automatically see a link to the full-text within the database. If you do not see a link it is worth checking on our journal lists to see if that journal title is available in a different database or in case we have the print format.

If you need an article that we do not have full-text for you can request an inter-library loan and we will try to get it for you from another library.

You'll find more help on finding articles in our Online Guides and Support section.